Director: Peter Berg
Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Kurt Russell, John Malkovich, Gina Rodriguez, Dylan O'Brien, Kate Hudson
Runtime: 1 hr 47 mins
Rating: PG13 (Some Intense Sequences)
Released By: Golden Village Pictures
Official Website: http://www.deepwaterhorizon.movie
Opening Day: 29 September 2016
Synopsis: On April 20th, 2010, the world’s largest man-made disaster occurred on the Deepwater Horizon in the Gulf of Mexico. Directed by Peter Berg (Lone Survivor), this story honors the brave men and women whose heroism would save many on board and change everyone’s lives forever.
What runs through your mind when you watch a disaster movie?
“What if I was the one stuck in the situation? Would I be still be able to think and make my way out alive?”
“Hell, that wasn’t a very smart thing to do! Serves you right for not being able to survive this!”
“Boy, how do all these people still manage to look like movie stars despite the terrible, terrible circumstance they are in?”
One thing for sure, you will be able to walk out of the theatre safely when the end credits roll. That is, after you’ve gulped down your share of snacks, while seated comfortably in a cushioned chair (in an air conditioned hall, no less).
After thrilling your senses with action packed movies like The Kingdom (2007) and Battleship (2012), director Peter Berg brings one of the largest man made disasters to the big screen. Based on the 2010 Deep Horizon explosion and oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, this 107 minute movie brings viewers to the heart of the action, and explores the evergreen question of what is the price of corporate greed?
As you would expect from other disaster movies which celebrate the human spirit (and the all mighty American heroism, of course), this one features stories of how characters led others to rescue fellow crew members. You also get the corporate villain who is conveniently painted as the one single cause of the disaster. But at the end of the day, you will still be thrilled by the harrowing action sequences that will leave you hoping that you will never have to face such a situation.
Berg reteams with Mark Walberg, who worked with him on Lone Survivor (2013). Here, Whalberg plays Mike Williams, who was the chief electronics technician of the oil rig. The good looking actor puts his rugged charm to good use, while maintaining the dignity of playing a real life character. He is joined by Kurt Russell’s Jimmy Harrell, who was the offshore installation manager when the disaster happened. The two veterans are put in spotlight as they go all out to ensure the safety of the crew.
Playing the baddie is John Malkovich, the sneaky villain you’d love to hate. There are also family members (Kate Hudson, who plays Walberg’s wife) worrying back home. Oh, there’s also a heroine played by Gina Rodriguez to appeal to a wider demographic.
Most of us are not familiar with how oil rigs work, and the filmmakers have done a decent job with bringing us close to the action. The movie does not waste much time explaining the whys and hows – you will be coming face to face with non stop explosions, raging fires and lots of shaky camera shots to get a taste of what it might have been like to be near the disaster. Although there isn’t much to expect with the predictable storyline, you are engaged from start to finish because you know this is a true story.
When the movie ends with descriptions of what happened to the key characters, as well as a list of the deceased, you can only sigh and ponder how much life is really worth.
(This disaster movie offers nothing new, but it is a solid piece of work that will keep you engaged from start to finish – and wish that you will never be involved in such an unfortunate incident)
Review by John Li