Apart from the stunning VFX (those render times must have been horrendous), I enjoyed the fact that the movie was NOT about saving humanity. There was no portal to close that was about to let an alien invasion take place. There was no evil super villain.
Yes, that did make it refreshing. Just plain old real adversity.
The one major inaccuracy that I've not seen anyone talk about? All EMUs have SAFERs attached to them, even when attached to the arm. These Simplified Aid for EVA Rescue packs are a little propulsive unit that fits onto the main backpack and are designed specifically to allow astronauts to move around and return in case of trouble. So Stone should have been able to stabilise and return to the shuttle on her own. I looked, she's not wearing one.
Now one could have made the argument that this was before these were introduced, back when the bigger MMU was being tested - that famous picture of Bruce McCandless doing the first untethered EVA looks remarkably like what Clooney is doing (and he says he is testing it) - in the 80s I think it was and following a typical old Hubble repair mission profile, except the film is much more likely to be set in the future with the Tiangong station completed, the ISS completed, and shuttle missions at STS-157 (we ended at 135).
Also, the station tends to have railings and handles all over it, ideally an astronaut can move across most of its surface without ever untethering (in actual fact, astronauts always remain tethered), so I was quite surprised to see Stone take numerous risks leaping from one rail to the next. Considering that she was always missing things, I would have thought that she'd be clinging on for dear life. Granted she was in a bit of a hurry.
And airlock doors wouldn't fly open like that, that would have smashed an astronaut's helmet or sent him/her flying away.
Finally, I'm pretty sure the Soyuz flight suit has to have an external power source etc. and whilst when she's detaching the parachute she has the umbilical, she doesn't later have it when she's transfering to the Tiangong. In fact, technically, she'd be wearing the Sokol suit, which isn't designed for EVA at all. However, maybe in this near future they are?
Yep, I wish I hadn't spend the last 2-3 years or so researching about this stuff for my own story, I wouldn't have noticed stuff like this.
Edit - conversely, I buy that Kowalski decides to detach himself, since Stone doesn't have an adequate anchor to pull him in. The act of pulling on the tether would have exerted force on the ropes around her leg and at the other end, which would likely have come loose as a result. You know, for every force there is an equal and opposite reaction?
Last edited by redxavier (2013-11-16 12:30:33)
Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were. But without it we go nowhere. - Carl Sagan