Movie Review: The Impossible

Posted: December 25, 2012 in award season, movie reviews, movies
Tags: , ,

The Impossible very well may be the best film I’ve seen this year. It’s a film that still sticks with me even though I saw it weeks ago. There are stunning performances from Naomi Watts, Ewan McGregor, and Tom Holland. I dare you not to be moved by it.

The Impossible

Starring: Naomi Watts, Ewan McGregor, Tom Holland

Premise: The Day after Christmas in 2004, Thailand was hit with a devastating tsunami. The Impossible follows the story of a family vacationing in Thailand for Christmas. Maria, Henry and their three sons thought everything was normal, until a huge wall of water descended on their vacation abroad. The family is separated and forced to find ways to survive, and get back to each other.

My Review: Hundreds of thousands of people were affected by the tsunami, but The Impossible is based on a true story of one family’s fight to survive it. And it’s a fight that must be watched. I don’t know what it’s like to be separated from my loved ones due to a natural disaster, or really any disaster. And after watching this movie, I hope I never have to find out. The images and scenes in this movie are so vivid, whenever I think about it I feel like I am reliving it.

This is thanks in part by the wonderful directing of Juan Antonia Bayona. He doesn’t glorify the tsunami, he gets into the nitty gritty of it all. His decision to cast the impeccable Naomi Watts could not have been better. Watts is really the one to watch in this movie. Her performance, as Maria, the matriarch of the family is really what holds the movie together. Her fight, her struggle, despite a shattering injury is so extraordinary, I can’t help but want to learn just exactly what this family went though. Watts shows every emotion on her face in this movie. She doesn’t sugar coat things for her son Lucas (Tom Holland) when they find themselves separated from the rest of their family. In fact, her young son steps up to help his mother never crumbling in defeat like I’m sure I would have numerous of times. They both fight to save each other, and their performances are outstanding.

Ewan McGregor, though a smaller part as the movie focus’ more on Maria and her son, has an equally emotional performance that moved me to tears. I still tear up just thinking about hit. Henry never once gave up looking for his family, even when he was forced to abandon his other two sons with a fellow survivor in order to search for Maria and Lucas. His decisions were almost more difficult than those of his wife and other son. Do you fight to put your family back together, or protect those young innocent lives who you know are alive and who are looking to you to protect them from further harm?

The Impossible is a movie a you cannot miss. You must watch it, and you must watch it in the theater. The effect of the wave is so brilliant and realistic it’s something that needs to be marveled at on the big screen. And don’t get me wrong, what happens just after the wave hits is just as devastating as the actual wave itself. For a half an hour Watts and Holland are beaten down by relentless waves of water leaving you feeling just as exhausted and spent as they are when the current finally secedes.

Give these actors Oscar Nominations…NOW.


Rating: 4 ½ Stars





  1. steandric says:

    Excellent review. Thank you.

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