Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Near Death And 127 Hours To Go

If you don't already know the story, 127 Hours is that new Danny Boyle flick based on the true story of Aron Ralston who had to cut off his own arm back in 2003 after five days of being pinned at the bottom of a canyon. James Franco is just awesome here. But let's go beyond the basic story elements (which were great) and discuss the clarity of emotion this movie emitted... Rather, let me retrace the experience I had while watching the thing. And believe me, I am aware this is not how everyone will react and perhaps the pieces of the whole came together in just the right way to make me feel an emotion I can't say I've ever felt before.
Firstly, I felt for Aron. He was a cool guy and a believable human being, which is hard to come by even in true stories. But when I came to realize just how dire his situation was and why it had come to this, I really connected with the reality of strain he had almost intentionally forced upon his relationships. So I felt for the guy.

Secondly, as the event came up... the arm breaking and subsequent cutting off... something happened to me, something that has never happened to me, not in a movie or in a real life situation... the film struck a nerve... literally. And with that strike came a sound. And when that sound jolted out of the speakers... I went blind. For thirty seconds I sat there unable to see what was happening. I was thoroughly freaked. Slowly the colored specks cleared from my eyes and I could see the rest of the act, but I felt this warmth rise up in my body. "Am I gonna be sick?" I had to ask myself. I felt queasy. I couldn't get cool rolling up my sleeves. I couldn't get warm rolling them down again. And my ears began to ring.
The movie ended. I exited the theatre. And I felt... dare I say... amazed. Never in my life have I felt like that. Not a horror movie in the world has ever pulled off that sense of connection. But this flick brought it. I'm not saying this is the greatest film ever made or anything that extreme. But it surprised me... intensely. And that is a rare thing.
Definitely give 127 Hours a chance in theaters. Now maybe I should go have a visit with a doctor...?

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