The next two-and-a-half weeks sees three of the year’s biggest film festivals set to unfold across the Northern Hemisphere – Venice, Telluride and Toronto.
Things kicked off last night in Venice where Alfonso Cuaron’s “Gravity” had its world premiere to rave reviews from the various outlets in attendance. Here’s some select quotes:
“At once the most realistic and beautifully choreographed film ever set in space, Gravity is a thrillingly realized survival story spiked with interludes of breath-catching tension and startling surprise… Smart but not arty, dramatically straightforward but so dazzlingly told as to make it a benchmark in its field.” – Todd McCarthy, THR
“Offers in abundance the sort of eye-popping, screen-filling spectacle that demands to be viewed in a theater. Not unlike earlier triumphs of 3D and vfx innovation such as “Avatar” and “Life of Pi,” though conceived along less fantastical, more grimly realistic lines… ” – Justin Chang, Variety
“Visceral, knuckle-chewingly tense stuff. The camera floats as weightlessly as its subjects, but the shots (often extended, but always in a way that favors storytelling above showboating) are always clear, and more often than not composed with meaning and artistry.” – Oliver Lyttelton, The Playlist
“A genuinely tense and exciting lost-in-space thriller, Alfonso Cuaron’s exhilarating and often spectacular 3-D film is a real pleasure, driven by top-notch lead performance from Sandra Bullock and George Clooney as well as some seriously cool special effects. Despite some lapses into sentimentality, Gravity sustains its simple concept and turns out to be a real audience pleaser.” – Mark Adams, Screen
“This is a film that has to be seen on the big screen (and, one would presume, IMAX where possible). Only the canvas of cinema can provide the grandeur, scale and – when it comes to the sound design – the volume to tell such an epic tale… ” – John Bleasdale, CineVue
“A visual triumph even if its storytelling is less than sure-footed… The production design is meticulously detailed. The one problem with ‘Gravity’ is that the plotting never quite matches its visual imagination. There isn’t the same urgency or plausibility here found in JC Chandor’s recent, similarly themed All Is Lost… Even so, this is a film that, at its best, really does induce a sense of wonder” – Geoffrey MacNab, The Independent