The Impossible ****
The impossible, great direction and actors work without false melodrama. Good film that dignifies the disaster genre.
Based on a true story, yes, conveniently makeup for film and changing some things and names to find an easier international distribution, something perfectly legal from the business point of view (remember that film is primarily an industry), Juan Antonio Bayona again hit the mark as it did with The Orphanage. Both films have in common the same theme, the family. They also share the same approach: mix the characteristics of a certain genre director staff look on his characters. The result is a curious alliance between the keys of commercial cinema and art house films that effectively keeps Bayona in balance and complement at all times. Both films also have in common a great job of its actors. This is essential to the way in which arises Bayona tell his story, keeping close to the characters, in this case even more strongly next to The Orphanage, because it is not fictional creations, but characters inspired by real people. Respect is imposed without abridging freedom in no time director to build the dramatic moments. Rather the opposite is true: it is respect for the characters and the real tragedy is portraying what makes a key to tell the story. This respect for the real tragedy of the tsunami in Thailand and its protagonists imposes a tone of sobriety in the treatment of plot and character that prevents any excess or free melodrama. Thus, the film is coated with a likelihood the more terrible because it is more believable. And so it is more mature than any other exercise of the generic formula for disaster film shot so far. The sobriety and maturity of the film derives much of that respect for the subject, which ends up being also a respect for the audience who are not harassed in an attempt to wrest tears by way of hyperbole banal tragedy that often characterizes other doomsday movies.
Of course The Impossible has a spectacular and impressive scenes of the tsunami, the sea invaded the land and get customized protagonists experience through sound and visual approach and planning that extends in duration and intensity that brief point of the matter Clint Eastwood gave us in Hereafter. For ten minutes we witness the brutal experience of being washed away with Mary, the mother who plays Naomi Watts, and her son Lucas, played by Tom Holland. The sound and images team up to make us feel in the water.
But it soon becomes clear that, contrary to what happens in the cinema of catastrophe, the disaster itself here is not the protagonist, but the trigger for the real story, which is an adventure of survival and overcoming adversity without tears easy or epic resonances. Quite the contrary. Bayona choose a spectacular visual planning which does not fall into the trap of being carried away by the sheer magnitude of the disaster until it became a spectacle. Because his subject are people at all times, not just characters.
This respect is also the origin of three moments that set the tone of maturity and strength of the film. The first reaction shows a child's horror at seeing the destruction in the body of his mother and immediately after a moment of embarrassment to see the naked breast. The second gets put on the throat when the parent calls the grandfather of his children. The third is a kind of funeral song by those who perished in the disaster, which were never found, the memory of the fallen that each player will always through those words and objects. Memory is, how fragile is shown in the general public as spend a few days of the tragedy and a new tragedy explodes somewhere else, because even in this neighbor of our society sympathize soon tires to mourn the dead themselves and shows avid and voracious in seeking new catastrophes. Those three moments collected the real success of The Impossible and the resolution of other sequences and visual talent director to work with the camera panning and blurring the separation between the audience and the characters to situate almost within the film itself. It is worth noting here the work of directing actors, which has managed to get the greatest naturalness even the younger cast members. In that sense, the two younger brothers are an example of simplicity in which involvement not appreciated that sometimes makes the children in the film interpretations. Children this movie really look like children, not monsters wiseacres. As Tom Holland with Naomi Watts as a perfect duo, fully capable of hitting within living hardest times the characters they play. Holland reminded me of two other great works of young actors, Christian Bale in Empire of the Sun and Jamie Bell in Billy Elliott. And to be honest it's hard to think of an intense moment of wasted talent in the filmography of Ewan McGregor as he plays with a phone in this movie.
I do not deny that the film has a plot tour somewhat limited, but I think that also work to your advantage. The credibility of the story would be lost unnecessarily prolonging the footage or introducing more situations and scenarios. It is more likely as we are presented, focusing on the arc plot development of the experience of these characters in the first person.
This truly is an intimate story in a spectacular setting.
On the other hand is not as morbid as it might have been, and even if viewers can not be separated from the tissue, not a film that seeks to tear easily. In conclusion: a great job.
The impossible is fully exportable, fully effective for all audiences, anywhere in the world.
Miguel Juan Payan
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