Saturday, October 5, 2013

Frittering away my advantage

Welcome to the day Gravity -- Alfonso Cuaron's first movie since his 2006 masterpiece Children of Men -- comes out where you are.

You, if you live in the United States, that is.

I live in Australia, so I got it a day earlier. Two days earlier, really, when you consider that movies come out on Thursdays here, and we've got a day on you to begin with.

This is not particularly usual, as movies often don't come out here until three weeks to a month after they come out in the U.S. Not with Gravity, though. We get Gravity first.

So have I seen Gravity yet?



It's looking like it'll be next Wednesday -- Tuesday where you are, you who live in the United States -- before I see it.


I had Australia Opening Day as a day free from childcare, when I could have strolled into any theater at any time of the day and laid my eyes on a movie I have been anticipating specifically for something like two years, and abstractly for the nearly seven it's been since I saw Children of Men.

But I had a full day already scheduled, including shopping before having a friend over for dinner, and completing some other time-sensitive odds and ends. I knew it wasn't going to happen.

However, the pull was strong. I really considered chucking those obligations and just going for it anyway.

Why I didn't:

1) My wife and I have discussed seeing it together. We have pretty easy access to babysitters these days with several family members living in the same city, and we've barely made use of them yet. We have a guilt-free babysitting session coming to us.

2) The IMAX theater at the Melbourne Museum is playing Gravity only from 4 p.m. onward. During the day, they have to show those shorter IMAX movies about aquatic creatures and the Serengeti, so they can get a few extra bucks from the people going to the museum. I couldn't see a 4 p.m. show because I had to pick my son up at preschool at 5:15. This is probably not the only place in Melbourne to see IMAX 3D, but it's definitely the closest, and it stands a great chance of being the best. Museums generally go above and beyond in presenting you the full IMAX experience.

And I understand 3D and IMAX are both musts for this movie. I don't know why they're a must, per se, because I've intentionally avoided learning anything more than the basics about Gravity. That means clamping my hands over my ears and closing my eyes no fewer than three different times the trailer came on at the theater.

I do know that there's supposed to be an "unbroken" take that lasts something like 18 minutes. That's the Alfonso Cuaron I know and love. I put "unbroken" in quotation marks because unlike during Children of Men, there may be digital trickery involved with this one. But Cuaron at least owns up to the trickery. In fact, I also heard something about him inventing a new camera or a new technique in order to do the shot. I can't be more specific, though, because like I said, I've been in zero information mode about Gravity, and will remain so until next Wednesday.

I do know that it has a 97 on Metracritic, the sum total of a whopping 42 positive reviews. That 97 also includes zero mixed reviews and of course zero negative reviews.

Wednesday. Wednesday. Wednesday. It can't get here soon enough.

Well, at least I can think of it this way: I only have to wait for it to be Tuesday in the states.

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