Film Review: The Finest Hours

The Finest Hours

Based on real events, The Finest Hours is an engaging adventure drama. There are some schmaltzy moments, but the film entertains throughout.

Bernie Webber is a member of the Coast Guard at Cape Cod. When a pair of oil tankers are battered in a 1952 storm, Bernie and his team concentrate on how to reach them. Back on land, Bernie’s sweetheart Miriam worries about his safety…

Director Craig Gillespie mixes disaster movie with drama in The Finest Hours. Set in the early 1950s, the film certainly has nostalgic appeal. The opening scenes in particular immediately situate viewers in the era. Music goes a long way to setting the scene, as does the brilliant costume design. In a way, the film feels like a throwback, with its wholesome characters. There is a charm to this quaintness, more than anything else.

The characters are developed as much as they need to be for the purposes of the plot. Protagonist Bernie is given sufficient depth to explain his actions later in the film. His relationship with Miriam gives the film heart, and makes it easier for the audience to empathise with him. The crew of the tanker are given enough material to interact believably in the perilous situation. Although their fates are important in The Finest Hours, the film concentrates more on giving depth to its protagonist.

Gillespie’s direction has drive in the action sequences. The level of energy fits the tone of the film. Special effects are good, as is the production design. The level of discomfort of both the rescuers and stranded seems accurately portrayed. Chris Pine is well cast as the classic American hero. Casey Affleck is good in a fittingly subdued performance. Holliday Grainger appears authentic in her role.

The Finest Hours is formulaic in its narrative, yet the tone and action sequence are commendable. The film harks back to an earlier era, which is no bad thing.

Previews: Fantastic Beasts sneak peak, Me Before You and more!

Lots of film-related goodness in this week’s previews, including a Fantastic Beasts sneak peek, the Me Before You trailer and more…

Fantastic Beasts Sneak Peek

For the Harry Potter fans out there, a Fantastic Beasts sneak peek. Actors including Eddie Redmayne and Katherine Waterston discuss their characters in the upcoming film. With a screenplay by J.K. Rowling herself, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is set for release on 18th November 2016.

Me Before You Trailer

Me Before You is an adaptation of Jojo Moyes’ bestselling novel. The film features an array or British talent, including Emilia Clarke, Sam Claflin, and Matthew Lewis. The film concentrates on Lou, a young woman, and her burgeoning relationship with Will, you she acts as a caregiver for. Me Before You will be released in UK cinemas on 3rd June 2016.

The Finest Hours Trailer

Inspired by a true story, The Finest Hours tells the story of the a mission to rescue the crew of an oil tanker off the coast of Cape Cod. The film stars Chris Pine, Casey Affleck and Eric Bana. The Finest Hours hits UK screens on 19th February 2016.

Hail, Cesar! Featurette

George Clooney, Channing Tatum, Scarlett Johansson and others talk about the making of Hail, Cesar! in the above featurette. The Coen Brothers direct the Hollywood Golden Age-set comedy. With a magnificent cast, Hail, Cesar! arrives on UK screens on 4th March 2016.

Grimsby Clip

Sacha Baron Cohen’s new comedy is Grimsby. The film is about a Grimsby football fan (Cohen) who reunites with his brother, a deadly MI6 agent (played by Mark Strong). Penelope Cruz and Rebel Wilson also star in the action comedy. Grimsby will be out in UK cinemas on 24th February 2016.