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127 Hours

A dramatic film directed by Danny Boyle, starring James Franco, and based on the true story of Aron Ralston who was trapped alone in the desert.

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We Often Find Ourselves At Our Strongest During Our Weakest Moments....

  • Apr 4, 2011
Rating:
+4
 I can almost guarantee that most everyone had seen and heard the news reports about the search for Aron Ralston and the harrowing experience he had gone through. Most of the details of his time in the Canyonlands National Park in Utah were shared in his autobiographical book called “Between a Rock and a Hard Place” that has inspired this film. Co-written and directed by Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire), “127 Hours” was critically acclaimed and gave James Franco a best actor nomination in the recent Oscars. It was also in the running for best picture and won “Best Song” in the Critics Choice awards.

Aron Ralston (James Franco) is a canyoneer who enjoys nature and the solitude that he gets from it. One day, after biking across the massive National Park in Utah, Aron meets two hikers and after showing them directions, sets off to do some more exploring on his own. Suddenly, a freak accident renders Aron stuck in a tight canyon with his arm kept in place by a boulder. Aron is now helpless and there is no hope for rescue since no one knows where he is. (we all know what happens)
 
                               James Franco as Aron Ralston in "127 Hours."

                               James Franco, Kate Mara and Amber Tamblyn in "127 Hours."

                               James Franco as Aron Ralston in "127 Hours."


It’s always hard to make a film in one enclosed space and one character that takes most (if not all) of the film’s burden. Such a film would require careful direction and the right actor for the job. “127 Hours” is a masterfully woven tale that has those two things going for it. To keep the film interesting and moving, Danny Boyle goes into the premise of the source material through interwoven emotions and a display of sheer human drama. The emotions when one is stuck in a helpless situation are on grand display; anger, fear, panic and regret are all played into the screenplay through masterful timing and execution. What Boyle does to keep the matters and emotions focused is quite simple but the trick was how he injected them into the screenplay.
 
He gets into the mind of the title character through the use of his musings, his wants, his regrets and his past. Through this approach, the urgency and scary nature of Aron’s situation becomes a vital element in the film. It was simple and yet calculated. You feel the want of the title character through his musings about a party with Scooby Doo, his regrets about not returning phone calls and how he may have missed certain opportunities. Aron becomes a character that anyone can find an attachment to; he feels very human and very vulnerable. Yet, even as he experiences mild paranoia and panic, he manages to keep things together. Aron may panic at times, but he keeps his composure as he works to find a way to escape this dire situation. Boyle and Franco make for a very good collaboration; the two seem to complement each other’s talents and style. I would go as far to say that one wouldn’t be successful without the other in this film.

                        James Franco as Aron Ralston in "127 Hours."

                        James Franco as Aron Ralston in "127 Hours."

                       James Franco in "127 Hours."
 
I would have to say that the film also has its chare of unnerving scenes as anyone who had heard the news reports and read the book would have an idea to what lengths Aron had to go to escape his “bar less” prison. The scenes with Aron’s struggles were indeed difficult to watch; not so much as it was gory or bloody, but Boyle just had me invested emotionally with the character; I was rooting for him to pull through and I felt his moments of desperation. From Aron’s efforts to stay high-drated, to keep warm, and finally the final act of the film, I felt each and every moment of pain and emotion due to Boyle’s careful designs and Franco’s effective acting. The film has a few supporting characters as portrayed by Amber Tamblyn, Kate Mara and Lizzy Caplan; Treat Williams and Burton portrays Aron’s parents, and they all serve to assist the viewer in feeling attachment for Aron’s character. It is always nice to get to know the lead’s wants, desires, pain and regret especially in a film like this.
 
Not really sure how Boyle did the shots, I would imagine that he must’ve modeled the sets from the real spot where it took place. The cinematography was spot-on, as we see the beautiful landscape that Aron likes to frequent; I would love to go there myself, so I don’t blame anyone for exploring those canyons. There were small alterations to the film to assist its pacing, (like the hidden pool scene) but the film was factually accurate.
 
“127 Hours” serves as a cautionary tale for explorers. I am all for solitude and being alone, but one needs to keep everyone informed where one might be. Accidents happen, and sometimes they cannot be avoided, and during these times, the strength of the human spirit as well as the natural instinct to survive just shines through and through. Most of the time, we learn about ourselves during desperate situations. We find ourselves at our strongest during our weakest moments.
 
Highly Recommended!! [4+ Out of 5 Stars]

Poster art for "127 Hours"  Poster art for "127 Hours"

We Often Find Ourselves At Our Strongest During Our Weakest Moments....

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April 06, 2011
Excellent review here WP, I thought Franco should have got the Oscar.
 
April 05, 2011
I like this one too. I still think Boyle's at a low point in his career though. I'd like to see him return to a more independent, lower profile, style of film making.
April 16, 2011
what is your favorite Boyle flick?
April 16, 2011
Toss up between "Trainspotting" and "28 Days Later". Everything he's done since "28 Days Later" has been too flashy for my tastes, although I did like this a lot more than either "Millions" or "Slumdog Millionaire".
 
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More 127 Hours reviews
review by . February 25, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Epitaph in Blue John Canyon: Aron Ralston (1975-2003)
What's the odd of being stranded in the bottom of a Canyon solo and then having a boulder fall on you and trapped your hand in between?! That's one in a trillion chance, isn't it?      The footage in this movie is simply awesome! I love Canyons and have been to a great many in the U.S. but I would never dream myself of being trapped the way Aron Ralston was. And the story of the movie goes on to show how he survived it after 127 hours (5 days or so) of life threatening …
review by . April 16, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
**** out of ****     Danny Boyle is one of the most ambitious and talented filmmakers in the business, today. He made "28 Days Later" and "Slumdog Millionaire", both wonderful, and now he has made "127 Hours". But this time, there is not one, but two men behind all the magic. James Franco stars in this film, and he acts as Boyle's other. Without Boyle, Franco would be screwed; and without Franco, so would Boyle (maybe). I know Boyle as a stylistic genius and powerful story-teller. …
review by . February 17, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
A true story, that had only started to fade from our memory was brought back to our attention by James Franco and Danny Boyle and is now up for a couple of awards. 127 Hours tells the story of Aron Ralston, a 27-year old climber, who trapped his right arm between a boulder and the wall of a small slot canyon in the vast Arizona desert. While your choice to go to this movie or to stay away may be based on the climax, you would be foolish to judge this movie on that scene alone.   …
review by . January 06, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
   Danny Boyle deserves all the credit in the world for this directorial achievement. Personally, I think he did an outstanding thing taking on a subject which is hard to put on screen for one hour and half and keep you interested in the character and keep things entertaining: the true story of Aron Ralston, a mountain climber who had to resort to one of the most desperate measures in order to fade death.      A profound survival story that doesn't get too melodramatic …
review by . May 06, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
A Real Ordeal Becomes a Fascinating Stream-of-Consciousness Survival Story
Watching the first twenty minutes of 127 Hours I was repelled by what I was watching, and not just by Aron Ralston's rope, either.  It doesn't help a review when you want to be uplifted and inspired after a long, hard day at work.  What started as his ordeal became mine and will most likely become yours as the aforementioned protagonist climbs through the arid, rocky, rugged redish-orange Utah terrain.  Experienced, yet unsuspecting, the lone hiker falls into a cavern with …
review by . December 31, 2010
It's not often that I see a preview that grabs me as much as the one for "127 Hours" did. Scenery straight out of a Road Runner cartoon, excitement, adventure, and... hey, wait a minute, this isn't about that guy who... oh crap, it IS about that guy. Yes, THAT guy, the one who got trapped by a boulder while hiking in a remote area of Utah and cut off his own arm to free himself. I remember reading about him - his name is Aron Ralston -- when this happened in 2003. I also remember …
review by . March 29, 2011
A cautionary tale
28-year old Aron Ralston was an experienced hiker and climber who set out for a day of fun in Canyonlands that changed his life forever.  He fell down a crevice, a boulder pinned his arm, and he was unable to free himself.  Over the next five days, Aron recorded his thoughts on his video camera and dreamed about his family and friends, then, with no food or water left, decided to end his ordeal.   This movie is filmed almost like a documentary, a virtual one-man show for James …
Quick Tip by . March 22, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
James Franco just keeps rising as one of the most interesting and underrated actors in Hollywood. Ever since seeing him play James Dean in a made-for-TV biopic, I've been watching him very carefully as he chooses his roles. For a while he got a lot of supporting and a few leading parts in big budget action films, but he's showing his acting abilities lately in more independent and character driven films. Last year was a good year for Franco as he starred in two great films (the other being …
review by . January 01, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
I think there is inherent in mountain climbers and outdoor thrill seekers a certain degree of arrogance. To subject yourself to extreme environmental conditions and believe that you’re capable of taking them on requires a great deal of confidence, if not something of a superiority complex. I say this as someone who has never scaled a mountain and has absolutely no intention of ever doing so; perhaps it’s coming from a place of jealousy, since being unwilling to take a risk has not allowed …
Quick Tip by . March 22, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
REALLY well done film. Went in very skeptical of how they could make a two hour film from a guy stuck under a rock... and a story for which we already know the ending. Both director and actor made for a phenomenally visceral ride -- very hard to watch (not for reasons you'd expect actually), but really well made.  LOVE this director's unique and palpable style!! I was left with the same feeling I had after watching Slumdog Millionaire... boy would I love to see a movie THIS good every …
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Wiki

127 Hours is the true story of mountain climber Aron Ralston's remarkable adventure to save himself after a fallen boulder crashes on his arm and traps him in an isolated canyon in Utah. Over the next five days Ralston examines his life and survives the elements to finally discover he has the courage and the wherewithal to extricate himself by any means necessary, scale a 65 foot wall and hike over eight miles before he can be rescued. Throughout his journey, Ralston recalls friends, lovers, family, and the two hikers he met before his accident. Will they be the last two people he ever had the chance to meet? Written by Fox Searchlight Pictures  
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Details

Director: Danny Boyle
Genre: Adventure, Drama, Thriller
Release Date: 28 January 2011 (USA)
MPAA Rating: R
Screen Writer: Danny Boyle, Simon Beaufoy
Runtime: 94 min
Studio: Cloud Eight Films, Film4, Everest Entertainment
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