Between a rock and a hard place indeed…
Cast: James Franco, Kate Mara & Amber Tamblyn
Directed by: Danny Boyle
Screenplay by: Danny Boyle & Simon Beaufoy
The Incredible true story of Aron Ralston (Franco), an extreme sports enthusiast, whon after getting his arm trapped by a boulder whilst canyoneering alone in Moab, Utah resorts to extreme measures to survive.
If you were trying to figure out why Danny Boyle would opt to make a film based in one location with just one character for the most part – where said character finds himself trapped, literally between a rock and a hard place for the duration of the film – after his triumphant night at the Oscars with feel-good smash-hit Slumdog Millionaire, just take a look at his CV. The Brit director has spent his career to date mixing it up. But with Boyle bringing back A.R. Rahman to score the picture after his impressive work on Slumdog, and once again basing his film on a true story, 127 Hours most certainly shares some DNA with Slumdog Millionaire.
Boyle’s film’s thrive on energy and pace and despite the subject matter here, Boyle still manages to cut fast, shoot from every angle, and use split-screens to great effect allowing the film to feel like its constantly moving even though we never actually do. A.R. Rahman’s brilliant score helps too, pumping aggressively when required and restraining beautifully for the more emotional moments.
When it comes to ‘that’ scene involving a cheap knife, it’s grim for sure and Franco nails the intensity of it but actually all the pre-release build-up of people being sick and fainting in the aisles should be ignored because it is watchable, and so important not to miss it.
A lot of people are talking about it being James Franco’s year with the young actor appearing in around five films throughout 2011. He’s terrific here, acting on his own for practically the entire film, Franco goes through all the stages of emotion possible and his delivery of each one is perfect.
Naturally, all the hype surrounded one scene but don’t be put off. Boyle’s film is a hugely inspiring account of just how strong the human spirt truly can be.