jess kroll

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The Impossible

Posted by jesskroll on February 3, 2013 at 3:15 AM

The Impossible, 2012

4 / 5


The Impossible is a painful film to watch. The characters, story and dialog are so poor the film would be better without any of them (and the score is so overblown that it should also be completely removed). Furthermore, the lack of actual Thai characters, or the fact that the only victims we see are tourists whose vacations have been ruined and not the tens of thousands of Thais whose lives and homes were lost but still sought to help these same foreign tourists, smacks of marketing bias at best and blatant racism at worst. On the other hand, the staging of the tsunami, the raw brutality of it, the nervous, panicking, horrific imagery and Naomi Watts’s performance are all so powerful that they make the film painful to watch in the best way. The entire tsunami sequence is beyond comprehension, seemingly so authentic to an event that has happened and could, we fear, happen again. Personally, I became extremely physical uncomfortable (damn near passed out) from the unrelenting onslaught of danger and misery and the sheer torture of witnessing these characters struggle to recover in the aftermath of nature at its most sadistic. While all of the artifice of film, from characters to dialog, are supremely lacking, the experiential aspects of filmmaking, imagery and visual storytelling, are astonishing, powerful, brutal and amazing examples of just how painful, in both good and bad ways, film can be.


(Note: yes, this is longer 150 words for a movie that isn't either 4.5 or 5, but this is a special case which merited a more considered response. Plus it's my site, so I'll do what I want. And no one reads this anyway.)


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