"Full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing" could be a summary of thismodern-age disaster movie. In 2010 the "Deepwater Horizon" drilling rigoff the coast of Louisiana failed in spectacular fashion, bursting intoflames and spewing millions of barrels of crude oil into the Gulf ofMexico in what was the worst oil-spill in American history. MarkWahlberg plays the well-respected electrical 'Mr fixit' Mike Williamson the rig, reporting to the Operations Manager Jimmy Harrell (KurtRussell). <br><br>The exploratory project is way-behind and BP are not happy. Big-wigsfrom the company add support to Donald Vidrine, the BP site leader, inapplying mounting pressure on Harrell to press on regardless withoutall the necessary and time-consuming tests by Schlumberger beingcompleted. Rogue numbers in further tests are waved away as 'glitches'.A familiar story of corporate greed and pressure overriding theexpert's better judgment.<br><br>When disaster strikes it strikes quickly, with some spectacular andexciting special effects that leave the audience especially hot underthe collar. Female support is provided by the comely Andrea Fleytas(Gina Rodriguez), given the almost impossible job of keeping thefloating bomb on station as chaos reigns about her. As an audience weare back on familiar ground here from classic Irwin Allen disastermovies such as "The Towering Inferno" and "The Poseidon Adventure". Whowill make it, and who won't?<br><br>A more telling question here is "Do we care?" and unfortunately for thefilm, the answer is "Not really". This feels a callous thing to saywhen this was a real and recent event and eleven people and – astouchingly illustrated at the end of the film in tribute – many of themfamily men with young kids, never went home again. But film-wise, weonly really get bought into the fate of Williams, whose back-story,with cute wife (Kate Hudson) and cute daughter (Stella Allen) we get tomeet and sympathize with. <br><br>We get a minimalist view of Fleytas's backstory, but only enough toprovide a recurring "Mustang" reference. And that's it. All the othercharacters are just two-dimensional "rig crew": cannon-fodder for thespecial effects team. The screenplay by Matthew Sand and MatthewCarnahan really doesn't deliver enough heft to get us bought in.<br><br>While the special effects are good, the sound design isn't, with muchof the dialogue being incomprehensible.<br><br>All the acting is fine, with the ever-watchable John Malkovich nicelyportraying the corporate head you love to hate. Wahlberg as welldelivers enough range to make you forget in this "action mode" that hewas also in "Ted". And Rodriguez as a junior lead holds her own againstthe big guns in what is a creditable performance in a big film role forher. <br><br>While "Lone Survivor"/"Battleship" director Peter Berg neatly providesan insight into life on and around rigs, and (via subtitles)descriptions of the drilling process which I found interesting, thiscomes down to the sum of a tense build up, an hour of freneticdisaster, and then a whimper of an ending. Where were some of thedramatic scenes of conflict in the congressional hearing that thefilm's opening implies might come? Where are the scenes of ecologicaldisaster and local financial ruin to add emotional angles to the story?None of this is really exploited and the whole concoction comes acrossa bit "meh" as a result. Not a bad film by any means. But not one Iwill remember in a month or two's time.<br><br>(Agree? Disagree? For the graphical version of this review and tocomment please visit bob-the-movie-man.com. Thanks.)
Drama / Thriller
Drama / Thriller
In April 2010, there is no oil exploration operation in the Gulf of Mexico to compare with the Deepwater Horizon oil rig with its size or sheer depth of its drilling. However, the project for the BP oil company is beset with technical difficulties to the point where the general operational supervisor, Jimmy Harrell, and his Chief Electrical Engineer, Mike Williams, are concerned potentially dangerous trouble is brewing. Unfortunately, visiting BP executives, frustrated by the project's long delays, order curtailed site inspections and slanted system tests to make up for lost time even as Harrell, Williams and his team helplessly protest for the sake of proper safety. On April 20, the workers' fears are realized in the worst possible way when the rig's various structural and system flaws spark a catastrophic cascade of failures that would create a massive blowout and explosion that threatens them all, even as it also begins the worst environmental disaster in US history.
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