I absolutely loved this movie from start to finish! The visuals were truly stunning and really made you feel like you were there hanging in the vacuum of space with the astronauts. The movie gives you a definite appreciation for how awe inspiring it must be to be floating in space 600 km above the Earth. The threat felt real! When the debris thrashed the shuttle and Sandra's character is spinning out of control alone, I breathed "she is so screwed!" under my breath in the theater because the realism was so gripping.
Now, I know that astronauts can have fun in space, but did anyone feel like the beginning of the movie where Clooney's character is essentially joy riding on his jet pack around the shuttle and telling stories, a bit jarring? My first thought when I saw that scene was that Clooney's character was acting a bit unprofessional and unbecoming for an astronaut that is supposed to be experienced.
This was his last mission. He wasn't afraid of the consequences. I mean, what are they gonna do -- ban him from outer space? And who's gonna go get him while he's goofing off.
ALso, I think someone form mission control encouraged him to enjoy his ride.