2) The micro-level detail is nearly as impressive as the thrill-ride aspect.

Though Gravity isn’t one hundred percent scientifically accurate, the set design nevertheless feels, to a non-expert, genuinely convincing. The baffling controls of a Russian space station, the bulkiness of the space suits and even the way bits of random garbage float in the air inside zero-G spacecraft all add to the sense of an eerie, fascinating, beautiful and scary world of otherness.

2001 was the first Hollywood production to make us feel that painstaking research went into the production design, but the overwhelming increase in technical achievement makes 2001 and even Apollo 13 look primitive by comparison.