Three Words: Go. See. Gravity.
I don't care if you're not big on space movies or if you don't like Sandra Bullock's cheesy one-liners from Miss Congeniality. Get yourselves to the biggest cinema you can find and I never thought I would ever promote this - go see it in 3D. It is like nothing like you've ever seen and I guarantee it will leave you breathless.
The long 20 minute opening shot in which the camera seems to float through space following 3 astronauts on a routine mission, is mesmerising. The dialogue between astronauts is playful and there seems to be a relaxed casual atmosphere, until they receive news that a Russian space shuttle had blown itself up, and that space debris going at some ridiculous speed was coming towards them. Dr Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) and Commander Matt Kowalski (George Clooney) are the only two to survive this catastrophe.
Stone and Kowalski are now stranded. Not in a foreign country where they face language barriers or worry about pickpockets, but in the vast emptiness and silence that is space (for the record, space seems like a helluva scary place to be stuck in!). From here on, we are taken into their nerve-wrecking, nail biting journey to get themselves into another space shuttle and return home. I don't want to give anything else away but I will leave you with this picture - the closest shuttle is hundreds of kilometres away, Stone and Kowalski are joined together only by a tether, they don't have much oxygen left in their tanks and they seem to be floating at the speed (or not existent speed) of a nearly-dead snail.
Alfonso Cuaron (writer and director), who previously wrote/directed Children of Men (another must-see), has created a wonderful masterpiece. He has given his audience the gift of a wonderful cinematic experience and participation in this movie. C'mon, 99.9% of the world's population will never have the chance to go to space, so if you've always been curious, watch this movie and you'll get to experience just that. You'll be taken into this thrilling, scary, sometimes claustraphobic and insurmountable ride that will get you so emotionally involved. Confession: I was whispering, nudging, gasping, fidgeting and I'm pretty sure at one point I was subconsciously holding my breath in fear I would waste my own oxygen!
Bullock and Clooney are both outstanding. I didn't expect a lot of out Bullock to begin with, but the ex Miss Congeniality totally kicked ass and if she doesn't get nominated for an Oscar, I'll be forever disappointed. Both actors combined with Cuaron's great direction, breathtaking cinematography and superb sound/lighting/visual effects, this film is by far the best of 2013.