Posted on Monday, December 23rd, 2013 by David Chen
Alfonso Cuarón’s Gravity is one of my favorite films of the year, a non-stop thrill ride with innovative camera work, sound design, and animation. The movie’s apparent verisimilitude impressed me so much that I spent some time reading about how accurate it was from people like Neil DeGrasse Tyson, Andy Howell, and Michael Massimino. Turns out, the film takes significant liberties with some of the facts and physics (shocker!).
While the film is probably one of the most accurate depictions of space ever put to film, this accuracy makes the places where it ISN’T accurate all the more bothersome. The thing is, each one of Cuarón’s decisions makes complete sense. Every single scientific inaccuracy I’m about to list can be interpreted to be in service of the story, which totally delivers when it comes to tension and character development.
Nonetheless, now that I’ve started noticing these issues, I can’t ever stop noticing them. So, here are five scientific inaccuracies in Gravity that will now bother me forever. Spoilers for Gravity follow.