kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
Kate ([personal profile] kate_nepveu) wrote2013-10-22 10:19 pm
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Gravity

The critical consensus seems to be fairly well-defined regarding Gravity: visually stunning (IMAX 3D or nothing), lousy dialogue, Sandra Bullock isn't the best choice to carry so much of the movie.

Perhaps so much emphasis on the last two warped my expectations, but I didn't think it was that bad? Yes, there is a particularly nonsensical bit of dialogue where Clooney's character draws out Bullock's character's backstory, which he unquestionably should have known beforehand (and if he had, that particular point was emphatically not the time to bring it up). But I thought Bullock was fine, she kept me right there with her in the story.

(There's a point . . . maybe 1/2 to 2/3 of the way through? . . . where the movie skates on the edge of disaster. To me, it does recover, but just by the skin of its teeth. That is wholly the script's responsibility, though.)

Yes, the visuals are stunning. (This article about the special effects is annoyingly split up over several pages, but it does bring together information from a bunch of different sources.) I did see it in IMAX 3D and it did not make me sick (unlike, say, the last two of the Matt Damon Bourne movies), and most of the time it struck me as fairly unobtrusive, though the occasional coming-right-toward-you! moments made me roll my eyes a bit. I am vastly unlikely to see anything else in 3D, though, since the trailer for this December's Hobbit was hideously artificial looking.

Two last thoughts: Ed Harris is the voice of Mission Control. Why don't I have Apollo 13 on disc, and more importantly, why isn't the book Apollo 13 available electronically? And now I have even more feelings about visiting one of the space shuttles last month. *sniff*

Trailers:

Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit: I have read the early Jack Ryan books. This feels nothing whatsoever like them. (Say what you will about what Ryan turned into, when he started he wasn't young and he wasn't fundamentally an action hero or a spy—he has his action hero moments, but at base he's an analyst.) Also, even though I have never seen a movie with Chris Pine, I still instinctively want to punch his face every time I see it.

47 Ronin: Really? Keanu Reeves is the destined hero of a fantasy-Asia because he's a half-breed? REALLY?

Thor: The Dark World: I will require spoilers assuring me that none of the women are fridged before I attempt to make time to see it.

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty: I had this down in my notes as "Stiller midlife crisis (magic realism?)", before the title reveal. Then I looked up summaries of the story, and I am fairly sure that the movie has comprehensively failed to understand it.

Ender's Game: even if I didn't want to NOT support Orson Scott Card, this entirely fails to give me a Battle School vibe, which is the thing that makes the book interesting.

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug: a.k.a., LotR: Some More Prequel-ish Stuff via Peter Jackson's Id.
skygiants: Eve from Baccano! looking up at a starry sky (little soul big world)

[personal profile] skygiants 2013-10-23 02:51 am (UTC)(link)
Relatedly, I'm afraid to see Gravity because Apollo 13 traumatized me as a child.
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[personal profile] mmcirvin 2013-10-23 02:45 pm (UTC)(link)
Marilyn Lovell's nightmare near the beginning of Apollo 13 was inspired by a real nightmare that was in turn inspired by the movie Marooned. It's the circle of life!
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[personal profile] boxofdelights 2013-10-23 03:15 am (UTC)(link)
even if I didn't want to [refuse to] support Orson Scott Card
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[personal profile] lnhammer 2013-10-23 03:41 am (UTC)(link)
I like the Walter Mitty short story (despite its misogyny) and some aspects of it are part of my family's in-jokes (along with My Life and Hard Times). The trailer I saw made the movie look like it had nothing whatsoever to do with the story aside from a certain type of overactive imagination, and even that was overinterpretted into ... something almost else.

Jack Ryan as a young action hero lol whut.

---L.
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[personal profile] jorriespencer 2013-10-23 04:37 am (UTC)(link)
I thought Bullock carried the movie well. It was nice to see her doing something different too, as I've mostly seen her in romcoms—although I recognize that's not all she's done.

I think this was the best 3D I've seen, in that I never once thought about the 3D, which always brings me out of the movie (though I do actually like 3D).

[personal profile] auriaephiala 2013-10-23 06:28 am (UTC)(link)
"Apollo 13" is an amazing movie: it can keep me on the edge of my seat even though I know the ending.

Did you check for the book under its original title: Lost Moon: The Perilous Voyage of Apollo 13 (1994), by James Lovell and Jeffrey Kluger?

(Anonymous) 2013-10-23 02:46 pm (UTC)(link)
I have the hardcover version of Lost Moon. My usual policy about objects is that if someone will love it, I'll give it away (lots of exceptions)*. Do you want to own it forever? I can mail it to you.
* for example, it sits on the shelf next to my autographed copy of Andrew Chaikin's "A Man on the Moon" in its original paperback form. I spent half an hour chatting with him because nobody else was in the signing line at the time, and it turned out we had a mutual friend. I don't want to give that one away.

I didn't see any problem with Bullock's performance. We saw it regular (not IMAX) 3D. It was fine, but I think it would have looked good in 2D as well. I know people who are staying away, presuming vertigo.

I want the Stiller Mitty movie to play at the same (fictional) movie theater in which I want to see the Fellows Romeo & Juliet - the one with really good projection but no sound. I presume the Stiller movie is some sort of travelogue, as it bears no resemblance to the Thurber story.

Laura Dickerson
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[personal profile] prk 2013-10-23 07:06 am (UTC)(link)
Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit: I have read the early Jack Ryan books. This feels nothing whatsoever like them. (Say what you will about what Ryan turned into, when he started he wasn't young and he wasn't fundamentally an action hero or a spy—he has his action hero moments, but at base he's an analyst.)

Could they mean Jack Ryan Jr?

I only read the first of the books (Teeth of the Tiger), but I seem to recall him going off and doing field stuff involving terrorists.

(There's a point . . . maybe 1/2 to 2/3 of the way through? . . . where the movie skates on the edge of disaster. To me, it does recover, but just by the skin of its teeth. That is wholly the script's responsibility, though.)

Can I ask which bit (with appropriate spoiler warnings for anyone else who hasn't seen it)?

prk.
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[personal profile] buymeaclue 2013-10-23 11:52 am (UTC)(link)
I am really confused that the Thor preview kinda makes me want to see it. I have never in my life found Thor interesting. What has happened, brain of mine?!?
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[personal profile] metaphortunate 2013-10-23 06:14 pm (UTC)(link)
What is it about Chris Pine's face? So punchable.
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[personal profile] oyceter 2013-10-23 06:19 pm (UTC)(link)
47 Ronin with Keanu Reeves?! ...sigh. Really, Hollywood?

It's sad that I was surprised to see they did in fact cast some actual Japanese people in speaking parts and didn't whitewash the story.
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[personal profile] cofax7 2013-10-23 10:24 pm (UTC)(link)
I thought Bullock was fine, but not amazing. And yeah, a certain percentage of the dialogue was fairly clunky: it's hard to believe Kowalsky, as mission commander, didn't know [spoiler deleted] about Stone. Actually, most of what he was asking about he should have known.

Still, I did like the simplicity of the story. And they didn't shoehorn in a romance or anything, which I suspect the studio would have liked them to do.
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[personal profile] silmaril 2013-10-24 11:53 pm (UTC)(link)
My first reaction to the 47 Ronin trailer was to cringe, because really? really? seriously?, and my second reaction was to imagine your reaction and cringe even worse.

(I was entertained that some of the fight settings were apparently lifted from Legend of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time, though.)

Why is Chris Pine an auto-face-punch trigger, she asked curiously?

I hadn't come across anyone who suggested Sandra Bullock was a weak choice, and she didn't feel weak to me either, not at all.

(Anonymous) 2013-10-29 01:28 pm (UTC)(link)
My initial impression was that Gravity was written by someone who loved A13, but thought it had way too much boring family stuff on the ground and not nearly enough explosions in space. Also, Sandra Bullock was great, and this was probably the best leading role for a woman in a SciFi movie since Ripley