The Impossible Directed by: Juan Antonio Bayona Starring: Tom Holland, Naomi Watts, Ewan McGregor Rating: Not Yet Rated Release Date: December 21, 2012
TRAILER SCORE: 8/10
Thoughts by TSR: After The Orphanage I would gladly watch anything Juan Antonio Bayona does, but I was a bit leery of this one. I just didn’t understand why we needed to focus on a rich white family on vacation instead of any of the people who actually lived there. While that feeling still lingers, this trailer does make The Impossible look like a powerful story of hope, love, and survival.
Once I accepted the fact that this is the story the film chose to tell I found it very effective. The main trio – particularly Ewan McGregor – looks terrific. There is some really excellent craft work too. The picture is gorgeous from beginning to end, with the shot of people releasing floating lanterns being especially beautiful. Most notable, though, is the depiction of the tsunami. It’s sure to be one of the most impressive, difficult to watch sequences in any film this year. But that’s not the focal point. This is more interested in the aftermath, and that’s equally poignant. Taglines often rub me the wrong way. Between Damien Rice’s cover of U2’s “One” and the haunting images surrounding it, however, “Nothing is more powerful than the human spirit” works like gangbusters.
The Impossible is based on a real family’s experience, so their story should not be discounted. Yes, I would rather see a film told from the point of view of those whose entire livelihood was affected by the event. Maybe someday Hollywood will be interested in making that film, but for now we have what still looks to be a very moving story.