On Friday afternoon all my girls–all four of them (as we have picked up an extra for a couple of months)–were off doing their own thing. My husband had left his carpentry project to watch the Apple Cup, and I decided that I would go see Gravity, a movie whose premise has intrigued me since I first encountered it. I told Bruce where I was off to and, to my surprise, he leapt up and said, “I’ll go with you.” So off we went.
The movie was visually beautiful. As a reviewer had recommended, I insisted on seeing it in Imax and 3D, and I found myself feeling completely aspin and dodging satellite debris, along with Sandra Bullock’s character. I was astounded with the filmmakers’ choice to not visually represent Dr. Ryan Stone’s backstory, and then–a significant shift–this choice felt brilliant. That her father wanted a boy, that she had lost a child, that she had to claim her own power and her own life in order to keep it–all of this compelled me viscerally. I don’t want to give the movie away if you haven’t seen it, but I will say that it–as I had hoped–was a metaphor for every individual’s life, including mine. I don’t think you have to have lost a child to find yourself weeping when George Clooney’s character says, in his understated way, “You lost a kid. It doesn’t get rougher than that.” We’ve all lost something. We’ve lost ourselves. In order to go on, we have to make a choice to go on.
When I went looking for an image for this post, I found this discussion by astronauts as to whether or not the effects in GRAVITY were realistic.