'Gravity' Gets a Scientific Smackdown by a Real Astronaut

[caption id="attachment_205742" align="alignleft" width="300"]Gravity Warner Bros.[/caption]

"Gravity" is technically a sci-fi space drama, but writer-director Alfonso Cuarón tried to give the Tang mixture as much real juice as he could squeeze in, a la silence in space even during explosions and such.

Unfortunately, though, he missed the reality mark on a few notes, and a real-life astronaut — no, not that crazy lady in diapers — was all too delighted to bring this story back down to earth a bit. 

Speaking to Vulture, former 'Merican astronaut Scott Parazynski — a dude who served in the Astronaut Corps for 17 years, completing five shuttle missions and seven spacewalks, so he's pretty legit — broke down all the zero grav missteps in the movie, though he did say that he "loved" the movie.

Here are five of the biggest things we learned from the chat. Obvs, there are spoilers floating all around this thing.

1. Space buzz

Cuarón made a point of making this movie vewy vewy quiet, but Mr. Parazynski maintained that there would be a pretty constant noise going on for these astronauts if truth really met this fiction.

"When you're in your spacesuit, actually, there's a very comforting hum," he said. "You're always hearing the purr of your fan, which is your lifeline, it's what circulates your oxygen through your suit. You're hearing the crackle of the radio. It's just kind of a reassurance that you're still connected. When your spacesuit goes completely silent, that's a really, really bad day."

Well, no one's arguing that the movie pair were having a gee golly splendid day, though, are they?

2. No flight zone

The astronaut's free-flying high jinks made for good, lovable character development and all, but it wouldn't have gone down like that on a real mission.

"You would never, ever fly like George Clooney's character did. So you know, he's flying in close proximity to the Hubble Space Telescope. If you were to do that, you would plume the solar arrays, bend them and make them probably inoperative. So it was just all wrong." All wrong. Oops!

3. Flubber tears

So, space tears don't go the floaty way of certain other bodily outputs (helloooo upchuck). Instead, the expert said they "pool in your eyes like a blog, like in the movie 'Flubber.'"

Ten points to him for using that obscure children's movie reference in a serious sentence.

4. Where's that nappy, Sandy?

Sandra Bullock wasn't exactly raging with sex appeal in the movie, but there were some wardrobe slips which erred on the side of making her look purty, according to the good ship lollipop astronaut.

"[T]he fact that Sandra wasn't wearing either a liquid-cooled ventilation garment or a diaper under her spacesuit was an EVA faux pas," he claimed. "She came out in this form-hugging Lycra underwear, which I must say looked really good, but she wouldn't have been well postured to withstand the temperature extremes of minus 200 in the shade and up to plus 300 in the direct sunlight. And she wasn't even wearing socks, which I thought was interesting. Frostbite would be a real threat there."

5. He didn't have to let go, Jack.

Almost as devastating as that time we found out Jack Dawson coulda fit on that wooden plank too in "Titanic," Mr. Parazynski called bull on the need for George Clooney's character to oh-so-valiantly let go.

"I think all he would have needed to have done would be to crawl up on her, and basically rope-climb up toward the space station. Or just lightly pull and he could have flown himself up to the space station. There would be no continuing motive force to continue to pull him away ... He would have just floated there," he explained.

Have your mind blown even more by reading the full interview at Vulture.

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