High in the Air With the Ghost of Roger Ebert–“Gravity”

by Steed Dropout
Oct. 7, 2013
Berkeley, Ca


If you really want the story and credits and all—Google it.

It was Kubrick’s 2001, Billy Wilder’s “Spirit of St. Louis,” (about Lindberg’s crossing the Atlantic), a little “Speed” (runaway bus) and an angel film, like “Heaven Knows Mr. Jordan.”

Roger Ebert, the most generous of film critics would score this a 3 and Siskel would have thumbs downed it.

Vincent Canby would have treated it as a before Oscars action yarn and praised it with faint dams.

Mick LaSalle jumped out of his seat.

Pauline Kael would have teed off on this Ace Hardware epic.

When Clooney sips vodka as a ghost and gives a canned speech, I can hear Kael’s bones tinkle.

Bullock emerging from water, recalls Jaws.

As the film opens up in the air, way up, you may feel trapped. But soon you’ll be biting your popcorn bag as one thing after another goes wrong. “I get a bad feeling about this mission,” Clooney says. Me too.

The bad feeling is how this film appropriates Bullock’s “Miss Congeniality’s” klutziness, this time at the controls of a Russky spacecraft. Pass the borscht.

I kept committing the fallacy of comparisons, thinking about how much more developed these characters are compared to Kubrick’s, whose most interesting character is a gay computer, later borrowed for “I Robot,” in which the bot comes out, definitively.

Perhaps too well developed, as if twelve writers smoothed this out.

Clooney plays Mr. Up in the Air (“Mr. Back Pack”).

Bullock is how old now? (Miss Back Pack).

Do they face-lift necks? Hers was smooth as an onion, almost stinging the eyes. And she’s so svelte—a real athlete. Editing out the sags?

Clooney plays an astronaut who uses mission control like a night club audience.

Although I dreaded being lost in space, it was over in what seemed a light year.

I won’t give away the plot. I leave that to Google.

Can you see this with fresh eyes? I did.

The eyes don’t have it here. Eye candy without enough sugar to satisfy.

One thumb up one butt.

These views do not reflect those of reel movie critics.

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