Claustrophobic films seem to be doing well nowadays. All over the place we see films popping up, mostly horrors, that feed themselves on lonely, isolated and cramped places. We've seen Phonebooth, Buried (Both reviewed on this blog) and now we have Danny Boyle's latest creation. I think I'd have been more content if the movie had've carried on for another 33 minutes. Then it would've been 127 minutes. Guessed the movie yet?
Like many other films that are set almost entirely in a small space and only starring one person, it's not the most difficult of plots. Aron Ralston (James Franco) is a small town man wishing to follow his dream as a guide. He goes out hiking and rock climbing, ocassionally taking a break to help some hot girls enjoy themselves. But all takes a turn for the worse when one boulder slips and traps his right arm. Trying to avoid insanity, Ralston films video messages for his family off his attempts to escape and how his attempt at survival is going. Water starts to run out but there is plenty of urine. With little or no sleep (debates rage as to whether he slept) hallucinations begin to come to light and food runs out as well. Yes, Aron Ralston's experience is a brilliant depiction of hell.
Aron was so drunk he couldn't ride his bike.
Hopefully will be a short review, a lot less out there to discuss. A good movie. Mainly down to Franco's performance. One of the best performances of the year and completely worth it's Oscar nomination. Unfortunately, the other four nominations are also the best performances of the year. In fact, this is one of the strongest acting years for a long time and I'm really struggling to decide on my final decision. But let's talk about Franco. His incredibly subtle performance is stunning. When asked about factual accuracy, Ralston said that the performance was as close to a documantary as it could be but still remain a drama. Rather than going for the over the dop desperation that we saw in Buried earlier in 2010, Franco opted for a calm, mildly disturbing performance that also showed Ralston's boredom. It really is a stunning performance and any other year would be likely to win the Oscar. Will he win this year? Unlikely, but he deserves it if he does. Plus, he's hosting... That may not help him.
Technically it was excellent. Brilliant music and stunning camera work. Danny Boyle is one of my favourite directors and he once again proves himself worthy. If Inception and True Grit weren't nominated, 127 Hours would get the cinematography gong without a doubt. Unfortunately, they are and so 127 Hours is a dark horse here. There are some brilliant songs, particularly If I Rise, which has an Oscar nomination in ANOTHER close category. I See The Light and We Belong Together will give it a close fight. But we shall see soon. My main issue with this movie was the hallucinations and the flashbacks. Sometimes, they were perfect. But there were too many of them and not all of them helped. It came to a point where they just seemed to be put in there to make the movie a decent length.
A really good movie. Sorry for the short post. There isn't a lot to write about in such a short and one manned performance. But see it. It's worth it. Though, one man, claustrophobic movies seem to have a trend when it comes to star ratings on my blog... Hmmmm.
Best Bit? The insanity causing Ralston to create a gameshow. Funny as well as touching.