Watched a movie today that had slipped under my radar called “The Impossible”. Considering my son’s upcoming school project on tsunamis, The Wif thought we might be able to file this one in the “research” category. I pride myself on my ability to remember completely useless trivia and keep abreast of movie/celeb talk but I must admit this based-on-a-true-story film about one family’s amazing experiences during the 2004 tsunami completely blindsided me. Honestly, I only saw the trailer to this about a week ago, when The Wif showed it to me.
Starring Ewan Mcgregor and Naomi Watts, the story starts right before the 2004 tsunami hits. Mcgregor and Watts, playing the mother and father, have brought their three sons on a Christmas vacation to Thailand. After enjoying themselves for a day or so, they head to the swimming pool. During their pool side time, the first wave of the tsunami strikes. It was completely terrifying to see such a massive force of nature, even just on the movie screen. I can’t even begin to fathom the fear running through those people’s minds in those few moments of the waves striking.
From the opening scenes to the ending credits, this movie completely involves you emotionally; each character in the film feels credible and completely human. None of the performances felt forced or over dramatic. Having been a fan of Mcgregor for years, his role as a distraught father stuck making a very difficult decision (parents will wince at the quandary he faces) was one of his best. Watts, although a great actress has never been one of my favorites. I’ve never disliked her, I just have never been blown away by her roles up to this point. Her role in this movie, however, was an incredible display of her acting. Portraying a woman so deep in shock that she can ignore her own physical ailments (and they’re pretty graphic injuries she suffers) in the interest of others, she is most definitely deserving of the accolades being mentioned in the same breath as her name. The actor portraying the eldest son, Tom Holland, will be one to watch too. The emotional depth this young man was able to delve into was impressive. I definitely look forward to seeing more of his performances.
The bottom line is that even though there were a couple little story “hiccups”, there were none major enough to take you out of the raw emotional experience of this film. I can’t even think of how horrible it would be to watch all you care about wash away right in front of you.
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