Gravity

Alfonso Cuaron‘s Gravity landed with a huge splash this weekend, earning near-unanimous critical praise and exceeding all box office predictions to become the biggest October opening in history. Much of the appeal lay in the film’s verisimilitude. As several reviewers put it, Gravity is the closest that most of us non-astronauts will ever get to space.

But wowing general audiences who don’t know the first thing about actual space travel is one thing. Passing muster with experts is quite another. While astronaut Buzz Aldrin wrote that he was “extravagantly impressed,” astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson took to Twitter to point out everything the movie got wrong. Hit the jump to see what they had to say.

In an article for THR, Aldrin, who has previously called out After Earth for its lack of realism, raved that Gravity got the zero gravity experience right:

I was so extravagantly impressed by the portrayal of the reality of zero gravity. Going through the space station was done just the way that I’ve seen people do it in reality.

Though he noted some imperfections, including the curious lack of clouds over Earth, he concluded that he was “very, very impressed,” and hoped the film would stimulate public interest in space exploration.

In contrast, although Tyson acknowledged that Gravity “depicts a scenario of catastrophic satellite destruction that can actually happen,” he couldn’t resist pointing out what details the movie got wrong in its execution of that scenario.

Tyson’s critiques weren’t limited to the film’s technical blunders — or really, even the film itself.

Like Aldrin, Tyson isn’t shy about speaking up when films get science wrong. Sometimes, Hollywood even listens. James Cameron famously updated the star field in Titanic after Tyson informed him that the map was completely incorrect for the date and time.

But Tyson also understands that these details aren’t everything. Despite Gravity‘s many errors, Tyson said he liked the movie overall.

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