Saturday, October 1, 2016

Deepwater Horizon

Plot: The explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil drilling platform which lead to the giant BP gulf oil spill that lasted 89 days in 2010. The film follows electronics tech Mike Williams (Mark Wahlberg) from saying goodbye to his wife Felica (Kate Hudson) to his helicopter ride to the rig, through some troubling preliminary problems, into the incident that steadily gets worse and worse and worse. Mr Jimmy (Kurt Russell) plays the chief of the rig, and he is the tough, seasoned oil driller who gets co-opted by the evil BP engineers. Andrea (Gina Rodriguez) plays a bridge operator, and the only woman on board.  [imdb]    [photos]

Review: Like other disaster movies, we meet the characters slowly at the beginning including some of their families, then we get to know the situation, and the director foreshadows some problems ahead. Soon there is a fire and explosions, and people are dying, and everyone is struggling to survive. Tense, exciting. What is going to happen? Who is going to die? When will the Coast Guard come?

Mark Russell's Jimmy was well acted: he was principled and practical. I can imagine someone just like that. Mark Walhberg's Mike represented a regular person who became a hero in the situation. Gina Rodriguez's Andrea seemed realistic too, spunky or scared depending on the situation. The characters were the strongest part.

Deepwater Horizon was not too melodramatic just a few extra hugs at the end; Not too preachy either, though they could have skipped singing the O'Jay's Money, Money, Money to emphasize how the company skimped on safety.

I liked the prayer on the deck of the cargo ship at the end. I liked gritty men all kneeling. I think that could have happened too. 

Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Kurt Russell, Gina Rodriguez, Kate Hudson

Directed by:
Peter Berg

The Music:
A mix of electronic and acoustical music. The music is low key and in the background rather than in your face. 

The Visuals:
I thought the visuals were great, and I never thought they were fake. I recall looking up a photo of the real Deepwater Horizon fire, and it looked just like the movie poster. 

4.0 stars: .

More: I did a safety report on the Deepwater Horizon disaster for work, and they left out some of the safety problems, like alarms ringing that got ignored, and how the main dock where the life boat was got blown-up.

Even More: I forgot how good For the Love of Money (Money, Money, Money) was. Love that bass part.