Cooper's spaceship travels around (and very close to) the event horizon of Gargantua.

Romilly explains to Cooper...

Romilly: Gargantua's an older, spinning black hole. It has what we call a gentle singularity

Cooper: Gentle?

Romilly: They're hardly gentle, but the tidal gravity is so quick that... ...something crossing the horizon fast might survive. A probe, say.

Now even if we consider that Cooper's ship was going at a very fast pace, how did he and Brand survive Gargantua's gravity?

Note: I'm assuming the fact that Gargantua is a black hole and should have immense gravity. So even ahead of the event horizon it should be huge.

  • 4
    Hi, when quoting text you don't need to say where you've got it from. We'll assume it's from the film unless otherwise stated. Also, when quoting text can you use actual text instead of picture blocks. It makes it easier to search on.
    – Valorum
    Apr 5, 2017 at 11:08
  • 1
    Thanks! I'll keep it in mind. Also I shared link because this is just a part of communication. If anyone misses out the context, he/she can read a bit more on the given link.
    – Rajesh
    Apr 5, 2017 at 11:11
  • This question is possibly better suited for physics.stackexchange Apr 5, 2017 at 22:19
  • Even though there are apparently good explanations based in apparently good science - the black hole contained a thing (possibly only existed at all in order to house such a thing) designed to let Cooper wander around in time and talk to his past self and daughter. So, of course he's gonna be allowed in unscathed. : ) Apr 6, 2017 at 7:23

1 Answer 1


If you're in free fall, the gravitational force has no effect on you at all, no matter how strong it may be. The only thing that causes problems is the tidal force, which is the difference in the gravitational force between your top and your bottom.

The bigger the black hole, the weaker the tidal force at the event horizon. This question calculates you need about ten thousand solar masses to make crossing the event horizon survivable.

For a black hole massive enough, the tidal forces at the event horizon could be even weaker than Earth's tidal forces from the moon. Since the mass of Gargantua is said to be at least 100 million solar masses, the tidal forces encountered could very well be imperceptible.

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    @Rajesh Yes, that's the tidal force, as mentioned in my answer. But the bigger the black hole, the weaker the tidal force at the event horizon.
    – Mike Scott
    Apr 5, 2017 at 11:33
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    Brings to mind Larry Niven's short story "Neutron Star". Tidal forces played a pivotal role in the plot line...
    – BobT
    Apr 5, 2017 at 13:58
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    One word: spaghettfication. Apr 5, 2017 at 14:27
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    What Mike Scott is saying is that spaghettification doesn't apply until you're well past the event horizon for large black holes like Gargantua. Apr 5, 2017 at 20:49
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    As far as I know this is correct, super-massive black holes wouldn't "spaghettify" you like a normal black hole would. So you could actually fall inside without dying right away. The problem is that once you get inside there's a super-hot plasma grinder waiting to vaporize you. On a side-note: the movie is full of bogus science, just look at the Goofs-Section on IMDB. At some point it's even stated that the black-hole based star-system also contains a neutron-star they wanted to slingshot around.
    – r41n
    Apr 6, 2017 at 6:48

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