Captain Phillips

*****

It sucked!It'll be on cable.I liked it.It was good!It was awesome!! (3 People gave this 4.33 out of 5)
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Captain Phillips

Directed by: Paul Greengrass
Cast: Tom Hanks, Barkhad Abdi, Catherine Keener, Corey Johnson, Michael Chernus

Once upon a time, pirates roamed the high seas and commercial vessels were on constant guard, always leery of being attacked by a hostile ship flying the Jolly Roger. You’d have thought that by now all that kind of stuff no longer existed. If you did think that pirates no longer roamed the seas looking for ships, think again, because off the coast of Somalia modern day pirates run rampant. Case in point: the MV Maersk Alabama, an American cargo ship that was hijacked on the high seas and whose then Captain, Richard Phillips, was held hostage by Somali pirates in April of 2009. The events of that incident and Phillips book comprise the story of this incredibly tense, nonstop nail-biter of a film.

It’s a tribute to the masterful directing of Paul Greengrass, that even though you know the outcome, it doesn’t matter. You can’t take your eyes off the screen. Another reason for this is a guy named Tom Hanks, who once again proves he is one of the top actors of all time. His performance is flawless, and in the last four minutes of the film he shows us how amazing he really is, you will never forget it.

Can you tell I liked this one? So far it ranks number 2 on my best of the year. Here’s the storyline in a nutshell:

“Captain Phillips” is a multi-layered examination of the hijacking of the U.S. container ship Maersk Alabama by a small crew of Somali pirates. It is simultaneously a pulse-pounding thriller and a complex portrait of the relationship between two men, each with opposite goals; commanding officer, Richard Phillips (Hanks), and his Somali counterpart, Muse (Abdi) who takes him hostage. Set on an incontrovertible collision course 145 miles off the coast of Somalia, both men find themselves paying a human toll for forces outside of either’s control.

The fear, panic and emotional pain every character in this film endures is utterly tangible. Finally, here’s a film that grabs the audience and doesn’t let go until the very last second, if then. It’s also one of those times when the movie outshines the book, not that the book is bad it’s not, it’s just that Greengrass’ vision for the film is just riveting and the performances of Hanks and newcomer Barkhad Abdi are so compelling that it puts you right there in the boat with them. One more word about Abdi, he so embodied the character and endowed him with such humanity that as horrible as the actions of the character are, you kind of liked him as someone forced to take desperate action. Now that’s pretty hard to do. I hope we see him again in an equally good film.

Ok, so my take on the film; sail right on over to that theater, plunk down a few doubloons, and get ready for some high seas excitement. Har-Har!!!


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