Tag Archives: Bullock


4 Oct

‘Gravity’: Amazing visuals, hairbreadth escapes but a story that never quite soars

By Tom Meek
October 4, 2013


Some might wonder how the director of “Y Tu Mamá También” and “Great Expectations” (bet you forgot about that 1998 foray starring Gwyneth Paltrow and Ethan Hawke) arrived at a space odyssey such as this. Likely the international success of “Y Tu Mamá También” opened a few doors for director Alfonso Cuarón, and his follow-on, “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban,” which was the best segment of the overheated wizard series, enabled the Latin auteur to play freely with special FX and blockbuster-aimed gadgetry. Two films later he capitalized on that and wowed critics and audiences alike with the bleak future-scape thriller, “Children of Men,” registering perhaps the first perfect fusion of grand vision and epic scale in the new world order of digital filmmaking.

100413i GravityDevelopment of “Gravity” began shortly after “Children of Men” (in 2006) and took nearly six years to complete because of the need to invent technology to make the film possible and the degree of complexity and time required for some of the special effects, which are far beyond typical green-screen chicanery. For what’s onscreen and the $80 million budget spent, it looks like every minute and every penny was poured into every scene. The film is nothing short of a miracle in filmmaking and should be held as such.   Continue reading

The Heat

1 Jul
Cambridge Day, Here and Sphere

‘The Heat’: Feig’s funny, filthy-mouthed buddy cops are going to clean up Bahston

By Tom Meek
June 30, 2013

“The Heat” is funnier than it should be. Part of that’s because director Paul Feig has a way of taking flimsy ideas and strong comedic actors and creating lightning in a bottle. He did it with Melissa McCarthy and Kristen Wiig in “Bridesmaids” and does so again here. If there’s any doubt that it’s more the actors than Feig, I’ll simply point to McCarthy’s recent woeful outing in “Identity Theft.” It’s not so much what he does with the material but the chemistry he educes between his stars and how they build something infectious from thin setups.

063013i The HeatThe premise behind “The Heat,” which was shot in in our glorious city of Boston, though it doesn’t look so much like the Boston you and I know, is pretty much the same old comedic cop buddy story popularized by Eddie Murphy and Nick Nolte in “48 Hrs.,” and later, Mel Gibson and Danny Glover in the “Lethal Weapon” series, except here, the oddball pairing is women and the focus is more on the funny than the dark and grim, though people do get shot in the head enough and blood does spurt.  Continue reading