127 Hours

Viewed – 01 February 2011  Cinema

This wasn’t a movie that immediately appealed to me when hearing all the hype.  Granted anything from Brit Director Danny Boyle is not going to be without merit, but honestly … how interesting can a story about a man stuck under a rock actually be?  Very interesting is the answer, as we follow the true story of adventurer / adrenaline junkie Aron Ralston (James Franco) as he explores and pot holes his way around the cavernous Utah canyon.  All seems well, as he frolics with a couple of girls he meets along the way, but once alone again, he makes the mistake of exploring one particularly deep canyon, and that’s when disaster strikes and he ends up with his arm wedged under a fallen rock, unable to escape.

Danny Boyle’s approach to this horrifying situation is completely remarkable.  Never has the concept of one man in an isolated environment been so riveting, as Aron struggles, dreams and hallucinate whilst also documenting his plight on camera.  Boyle fills every moment with tension, humour, a great soundtrack and plenty of feeling, aided by imaginative use of split screen, trick photography and clever special effects.  Add to this a stunning performance from Franco who is so believable and heart-breaking.  This is a movie that even if you know the outcome, which many will, it’s the journey to that outcome that leaves one drained and also euphoric.  You feel every second of Aron’s agony and his eventual triumph against impossible odds – and I came away very impressed.

One of the few movies that really is as good as you will have heard.

Verdict:  5 /5

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