127 Hours (2010)

You know, I’ve been thinking. Everything is… just comes together. It’s me. I chose this. I chose all this. This rock… this rock has been waiting for me my entire life. It’s entire life, ever since it was a bit of meteorite a million, billion years ago. In space. It’s been waiting, to come here. Right, right here. I’ve been moving towards it my entire life. The minute I was born, every breath that I’ve taken, every action has been leading me to this crack on the out surface.

Aron Ralston

After I was puzzled by the massive success of Danny Boyle’s last directorial effort, Slumbog Shit-in-there, I wanted to see if he could redeem himself with the 219th Film of All-Time on IMDb, 127 Hours. It recently received six Oscar nominations including Best Picture, Best Actor and Best Adapted Screenplay. I was happy that the movie expanded this weekend that I could finally watch it. It is a fantastic film.

Best Actor nominee James Franco plays Aron Ralston who penned the book “Between a Rock and a Hard Place” after his ordeal. The setting takes place  in April 2003 where Aron is hiking in Moab, Utah where he slips trying to climb Blue John Canyon where he gets his right forearm crush beneath a boulder. As the title suggests, Aron is stuck in the canyon for almost a week with little food and water.

Aron tries in vain to remove the rock from sheer brute strength. Survival mode kicks in where Aron tries to chip away at the rock with a cheap pocketknife that eventually dulls it. As the hours drag on, Aron has to deal with the brutal elements of extreme hot and cold, malnutrition, dehydration and having the sense of claustrophobia. Feeling a sense of his impending doom, Aron uses his video recorder to document his harrowing journey to break free.

Slowly, his mind beings to drift away to his parents played by Treat Williams and Kate Burton, not being in his sister, Sonja’s wedding (Lizzy Caplan), recalling his fling with Rana (Clémence Poésy) and having a chance meeting with lost hikers, Kristi (Kate Mara) and Megan (Amber Tamblyn). Soon, Aron has to make a choice between killing a part of himself or killing his whole self.

I have never been so physically moved with a movie that would make me weak in the knees. That’s what this film has made me feel afterwards. It’s no surprise that there is an arm-cutting sense in this movie. I thought that it would more gruesome than it actually was. It was a brief bit of horror on-screen. The film actually made me want to throw up. That has never happened with a gory horror movie. That has to say something about Danny Boyle’s way of directing. His fernetic pace actually work here where Aron is slipping into a claustrophobic madness.

Judgment:  My faith is restored for Danny Boyle. Case closed.

Rating:  *****

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About Branden

Branden: I am just your average movie nut that reviews films. Gives his take on pop culture and Hollywood happenings. Dreams to have his own thriving website and make a living doing what he is passionate about.

Posted on January 29, 2011, in 2010, Academy Award Nominee, Action, Adventure, Biopic, Drama, Running Feature, Suspense, Thriller, Top 250 of All Time on IMDB and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. 127 Hours may be more a social media-driven cinema stunt than story, but it has triumphant moments, transcendent imagery and Franco’s Oscar-nominated performance. Good review!

  2. Branden, i thought it was a good movie and well-made but at no stage was i actually moved by Ralston’s plight, which kind of indicates the film failed to do what it set out to.

  3. Glad you enjoyed this Branden! Definitely in my top 3 movies of 2010 🙂

  4. Put that so well Branden, I found it a great journey with Aron and seeing him manage to free himself after the trauma of being trapped.

    (I hated Slumdog too!!!)

    • Oh, thank you. I wondered how he managed to cut his arm off, then when I saw what he did. I was dumbstruck.

      P.S. I’m glad that somebody hated Slumbog as much as I do.

  5. Glad to see Boyle working on something that is in his wheelhouse again. His direction was excellent in ‘Slumdog’ but the film itself left you wanting more.

    This film does not have the same flaws.

  6. I like that Danny is working on movies in different genres, but sometimes they miss the mark like Slumbog or Millions.

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