Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Gravity - Alfonso Cuarón

I quite liked it.

An astronaut repairing a satellite gets caught in a debris storm and finds herself cut off and isolated. Somehow she attempts to gravitate back to earth.

One of the biggest arguments about such movies starts with 'realism' and scientific accuracy. For me it was accurate enough. A couple of days back we caught some real footage of the hubble being repaired at one of the science museums. Without running a microscope over things, I'd say gravity looked pretty close. Other scientific concerns, the heights of the satellite's, the orbits, the under suits, the axis on which stuff explodes, the propelling , etc are probably all valid inaccuracies, however its not stuff that bothers me particularly. We've all seen movies with bigger inaccuracies, in science, in character development, in what not, and lived to like them.

The bigger problem was that the plot was rather thin, and that was perhaps part of the reason the movie stopped short of being great for me. But I still loved the visuals, and it still evoked all those feelings for me, disorientation, awe, alienation, longing, isolation, connection, fear... I loved the little things they had done to bring out those feelings, in terms of camerawork, foreign language keyboards, getting rid of Clooney, stuff which all added up to build on that raw emotion.

Overall, it was definitely worth a watch, specially in 3D at a hall. There would be nothing left of this on a small screen watched with interruptions. 

Friday, October 04, 2013

Life of Pi - Ang Lee

Liked it overall.

Its based on the book, and sticks to the story pretty faithfully. A young boy from Pondicherry, Pi , finds faith  of multiple hues, even as his family seem rather irreverent. ( And need I say , practical and sensible - but thats just me! ). The family plan to emigrate to Canada, along with many animals they owned while they ran the zoo. There is a storm, and then we have the story of Pi's survival. Him and the tiger. Its a story told in flashback, as a grown up Pi narrates his incredible story of being in a life boat out on the ocean with a couple of animals, who die soon, leaving only the tiger. And then in the very end, as we profess disbelief, he gives us the option of another story , with no animals.. a tad more sordid, ( and need I say , a tad more believable! )

I can't really understand most of the deep meaning and symbolism of either the book or the movie. After reading tons of analysis on the net, I can't say that  I understood the point about religion.. The better story ? I mean really ? You'd choose god created the earth in 7 days and Noah saved the gazillion species in the world in his ark because its a better story than evolution ? God saved Pi and not the others because its part of his grand design? leaves me cold this strange god.

However I had really enjoyed reading the book, just because I found it gripping. The movie was less so.. but it had its own charm, although a lot of it is just those beautiful shots of the sea, the sky and of course or Richard Parker.

Loved Richard Parker!

Overall its ok, didn't find it great or exceptional. 

Thursday, October 03, 2013

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy - Tomas Alfredson

Didn't like it.

Far too many characters and I couldn't understand what was happening most of the time.

There's a mole in the british secret service, planted by the russians. A retired guy from the service has to be pressed into service to uncover him, after another attempt goes awfully wrong.

I think i would need to watch it on a larger screen with the brightness turned up considerably, and keep a notepad of all the characters, their names, their nicknames and their faces, just to figure out who is who.

As for what the f*** really happened, was there a spy or wasn't there, and who was it.. I can't say I could understand it even at the end.