Tag Archives: macguffin

A Rebuttal to ‘Gravity: A Lifetime Movie in Space’

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Gravity (2013)
Directed by Alfonso Cuarón
Written by Alfonso Cuarón & Jonás Cuarón
90 min.

The following is a rebuttal to a recent Smug Film review, ‘Gravity: A Lifetime Movie in Space‘. Mild spoilers.

Gotta disagree on all counts.

Let’s go through it. The 3D diorama effect was kind of essential here, because it’s a film in a setting where people are literally thin slices floating on a plane of nothingness. It created strong contrasts between Bullock and the stars, debris and earth, and even the thumb-printed glass of the helmet and the actor’s faces. There’s one moment where a space station, a person, and the Earth are all in frame, separated by hundreds of miles, and all perfectly in focus because of a lack of atmospheric distortion. The 3D made that distance come alive in a way it can’t in 2D. It’s about gulfs, impossible blank gulfs, and that’s why it’s one of the only truly essential uses of 3D I’ve seen yet. About the only other one I can think of is Cave of Forgotten Dreams, which used it to bring out distances of millimeters of depth on a wall. Seems like 3D is at its best when it’s working with the very small or the very large.
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Any Day Now: ‘Based On A True Story’ My Ass

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Any Day Now (2012)
Directed by Travis Fine
Written by Travis Fine and George Arthur Bloom
97 min.

Spoiler-free.

What does ‘based on a true story’ mean?

The phrase gets used a lot to promote movies, and both your average joe and your above-average joe, when seeing said phrase, typically assumes it to mean that the basics of the story are true. Maybe there’s some artistic license here or there, some composite characters or whatever, but the movie bears enough resemblance to the actual facts that the phrase can be used in good faith.

This assumption is usually correct. Most movies ‘based on a true story’ are, in fact, that. But occasionally, they aren’t. Occasionally, the phrase is used as a deception. The filmmakers and/or producers know that the movie will have more pull if the phrase is there, so they stick it on a poster or promotional material, even though the film is entirely fictional.
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