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Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Summer Film Club Series: August

Thank to you everyone who has attended the previous films in our Summer Series, you guys are the best!

Our films for the month of August are: Gravity and The Martian

Thursday, August 17th at 6:15 pm

Gravity (click for trailer)

Gravity is a 2013 British-American epic science fiction adventure film directed, produced, co-written and co-edited by Alfonso Cuaron.  It stars Sandra Bullock and George Clooney as astronauts who are stranded in space after the mid-orbit destruction of their space shuttle, and their subsequent attempt to return to Earth.  Cuaron wrote the screenplay with his son Jonas.  At the 86th Academy Awards, Gravity received ten Academy Awards nominations and won seven, including, Best Director (for Cuaron), Best Cinematography (for Lubezki), Best Visual Effects, Best Film Editing, Best Sound Mixing, Best Sound Editing, and Best Original Score (for Price).

Gravity received critical acclaim.  Critics praised the acting, direction, cinematrgraphy, visual effects, and use of 3D.  It currently holds a 96% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes and Matt Zoeller Seitz, writing for gave the film 4/4 stars, saying this in his review, "If Gravity were half as good as I think it is, I'd still consider it one of the great moviegoing experiences of my life, thanks to the precision and beauty of its filmmaking.  If anyone asks me what Gravity is about, I'll tell them it's a tense adventure about a space mission gone wrong, but once they've seen and absorbed the movie, they'll know the truth.  The root word of "gravity" is "grave."  That's an adjective meaning weighty or glum or substantial, but it's also a noun: the place where we'll all end up eventually.  The film is about that moment when you suffered misfortune that seemed unendurable and believe all hope was lost and that you might as well curl up and die, and then you didn't.  Why did you decide to keep going?  It's a mystery as great as any in physics or astronomy, and one we've all grappled with, and transcended."

Thursday, August 24th at 6:15 pm

The Martian (click for trailer)

The Martian is a 2015 American science fiction film directed by Ridley Scott, based on Andy Weir's 2011 novel The Martian.  Matt Damon stars as an astronaut who is mistakenly presumed dead and left behind on Mars.  The film depicts his struggle to survive and others' efforts to rescue him.  The film's ensemble cast also features Jessica Chastain, Kristen Wiig, Jeff Daniels, Michael Pena, Kate Mara, Sean Bean, Sebastian Stan, Donald Glover, Aksel Hennie and Chiwetel Ejiofor.  The film received critical acclaim and has grossed over $630 million worldwide, becoming Scott's highest grossing film to date.  It received seven Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay for Goddard.

The film currently holds a 92% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes and Matt Zoeller Seitz, writing for, awarded the film 3 1/2/4 stars, saying this in his review, "It is predictable, but that doesn't hurt its effectiveness.  The most fascinating thing about the film is how it leans into predictability rather than make a show of fighting it.  in the process, comes up with a tone that I don't believe anyone has summoned in this genre, certainly not at this budget level.  Of all the stories you've seen about astronauts coping with the aftermath of disaster-including "Mission to Mars" and the visually superior and more aggressively melodramatic Gravity, which is more a self-help parable with religious overtones, The Martian is the most relaxed and funny, and maybe the warmest.  Strangely like Alien, Scott's breakthrough 1979 thriller, and maybe his follow up Blade Runner as well, The Martian makes the future look at once spectacular and mundane.  For all its splendors, the world that enfolds the characters is simply reality: the time and space in which they happen to be living."

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