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Yet another opportunity lost to great visuals
I believe we've reached a point where special effects are so amazing in their look and feel that we are losing sight of the power of characters and stories. Gravity is the perfect example of this. The visuals are actually emotional and powerful and the necessary setting for such a story. But they should not be what truly move us. Gravity lacks so much of what many of the great science fiction writers provided us with, the chance to see events that have not happened, but could, and the effects on human beings beyond the obvious fear and panic (Ray Bradbury's incredible Kaleidoscope of course is the standard by which any lost in space story is measured). No doubt the intent was to show only Stone's experiences from her point of view but it would have been interesting to see Kowalski's journey and thoughts.
Another problem with Gravity in my opinion is the obvious references to Alien, 2001 and other science fiction films. And it seems totally ridiculous to take off your space suit when the danger of a lack of oxygen or pressure is everywhere. But we all know why that happened.
I'm positive that the brave astronauts in our space program have always been the best of us without being perfect. Their skills, courage and inspirational lives are what I wanted Gravity to capture. Instead it seems to either trivialize their quality or distort it depending on the particular scene. The courage to fear ratio is definitely off in Gravity and the character's reflections and conversations are irritatingly shallow.
So many lost chances to explore events which our astronauts have always had to deal with potentially. I was very disappointed in this film for that reason above all else.
Bless the Beasts & Children (1971)
My favorite movie
Quite simply my favorite movie of all time. This is because of what it meant to me when I was growing up. Some movies are great because they impacted us when we were young. That is the case here. And it remains one of the rare movies that present the way many parents neglect and abuse their children. Another movie to me that captures many of the same elements is The Breakfast Club. The characters are shown as, some would say, troubled kids, but they are in fact survivors of unloving parenting. Seldom have movies shown the causes of the characters problems as well as this one. The conclusion of Bless the Beasts & Children shows how little adults can feel about children and how misplaced their priorities can be. This is a movie we can all learn from.
I hope they never remake this film.