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The Impossible 

Special effects outshine the plot and acting


The Impossible, directed by Juan Antonio Bayona, follows Maria (Naomi Watts), Henry (Ewan McGregor) and their three sons as they arrive at a Thailand resort in time for Christmas 2004, just as the disastrous tsunami hit. This isn’t a movie about the larger effects of the tsunami, but a very insular tale about beating the odds. As interesting as this one family’s story is (the movie is based on true events), once on a big screen, the plot doesn’t carry for the duration of its feature length. But the special effects—the giant wave surging, hitting land and so on—are pretty convincing. Watts and McGregor, both strong actors, mostly just yell after their three sons, the former wearing enough make-up to look beaten-up and earn her an Oscar nomination, whether or not it’s actually merited.

The Impossible
Rated PG-13 (MPAA) · 107 min. · 2012
Official Site:
Director: Juan Antonio Bayona
Writer: Sergio G. Sánchez
Producer: Javier Ugarte
Cast: Naomi Watts, Ewan McGregor, Tom Holland, Samuel Joslin, Oaklee Pendergast, Marta Etura, Sönke Möhring and Geraldine Chaplin

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