This week in theaters, recent Academy Award winning Director Danny Boyle is back with another ground-breaking, rock-tumbling film 127 Hours led by the charismatic and easy to watch (other than when he’s bleeding all over himself) James Franco. The film tells the real life story of Aron Ralston, a man who was trapped in a cave for (you guessed it) 127 hours. Though the film has its moments of being a thrill ride it’s also an amazing character study of what exactly drives Man to do they things they do.
Check out the full review and find out why you should see the film below…
- Director: Danny Boyle
- Writers: Danny Boyle and Simon Beaufoy (screenplay), based on the book “Between a Rock and a Hard Place” by Aron Ralston
- Actors: James Franco, Kate Mara, Amber Tamblyn
- Original Music by: A.R. Rahman
- Cinematography by: Enrique Chediak and Anthony Dod Mantle
Mountain climber Aron Ralston becomes trapped under a boulder while canyoneering alone near Moab, Utah and is forced to cut off his own arm in order to try and survive.
- James Franco: This is primarily a film with 90 minutes of Franco’s face on the big screen with almost no other actors to help him out, which a lot of pressure for an actor but one that he handled well. Not only was he incredibly charming and endearing, but he was able to captivate the audience and keep them interested in his journey from start to end. Nicely done!
- The Grotesque Arm Scene: I don’t always like graphic scenes, but the gore in this film was accurate, necessary and well built up to. Some people are walking away from this film only talking about this ONE scene, but the fact is they did a great job of showing that the scene was just a portion of the journey he wen through and that it was more than just a violent act but the result of many things adding up to one — in an odd way — right of passage. This was a life-changing experience and one that Aron is not ashamed from but admits himself that it helped him grow and learn the beauty of life in the hardest way possible.
- The Self-Made Video: Watching the videos that Franco’s character made — which were made to mimic the real life videos that Aron Ralston actually made — was probably the highlight of the film. Not only were they able to bring in some much needed humor to lighten the mood at times, but they showed you that it was Aron’s amazing positive spirit that helped him get through the ordeal. He never gave up and continued to fight, rationalize and even joked about his situation until the bitter end. When you finally see him breaking, even when he’s trying not to, it really shows the heart of the character and the reality of the situation he was in.
- Adaptation: This is a hard story to move from reality, to a book and then to a big screen mainly because most the story mainly takes place entirely in the characters head. For the most part it’s about the character reflecting on his own life and dealing with emotional, mental and physical exhaustion of his ordeal. Though these are all very powerful things they’re hard to visually portray when you literally have one actor stuck in a cave.
- Less Is More: With the above being said, they did come up with some very interesting ways of visually representing what he was going through, but sometimes I felt like they almost brought too much to him and didn’t focus on what was the most important part of the film — a guy who’s trapped with (almost) no way out and no one to help him. I think less would have been more in this cause and some more time alone with him in the cave could have helped. BUT that being said, without bringing in all the things that they did, they would have had a hard time selling that to audiences so I understand and respect the choices made. Sadly it did make me feel like the additions made this just a good and when it was quite close to being a great one. (I did feel like Buried did a better job by taking the risk of having ONLY Ryan Reynolds on screen and still making the film feel like a film).
- I got nothing.
This is an interesting film, unlike anything else in theaters, an amazing story, it’s a good adaptation that will have you cringing, crying and even laughing along with Franco and his pet rock. It’s worth the price of a ticket just make sure you don’t go in thirsty ort have dinner plans after!
127 Hours in theaters November 5th!