Film review: Thai Cave Rescue Drama by Ron Howard ‘Thirteen Lives’

The only real problem with thirteen livesAn intriguing account of the rescue of 12 Thai boys and their coach from a desperate strait when they are stranded in perilous caves during the monsoon, is that the same story has just been told in the documentary. Rescue last fall. Yes, of course, big-budget feature-length films starring well-known actors can attract much more clients than docs. But the fact that Ron Howard’s sometimes teased new drama will only be in theaters for a week before it begins airing on August 5, will drastically reduce the number of people who may have experienced this thrilling tale on the big screen, as it was clearly designed by that Howard and colleagues consider. Too bad, because it’s a delightful movie, both emotionally and as a production.

Telluride Review: “The Rescue”


Rescue It was a very notable documentary, and well worth it, as it explored the daunting challenges faced by the brave rescue team and the characters of a middle-aged macho group, mostly professional British, who set out to do little if anyone, others would have an idea of ​​how to save the children; The group was trapped for two weeks in an inaccessible corner of the labyrinth cave in the far north of Thailand.

One could say that this realistic action thriller will be a virtual proposition that cannot be missed, given its suspense and human elements. Sure, the film is deeply frightening, dominated by many undifferentiated participants and culminated in a recognizable happy ending, but it’s the lure of creepy suspense and the vivid narrative of what the rescue involves that mostly carries today.

The monsoon came early in 2016, but nevertheless there were no warnings about how quickly the cave would fill with water once the storm broke out. The boys apparently entered the cave to perform some kind of ritual, but before the group really knew what had happened they were trapped, unable to get back the way they came due to a sudden downpour. Storms are rarely unknown in the area, but trap falling was a new thing and was not expected to be something like this.

Very quickly, it became clear that the task of rescuing the boys was beyond the capabilities of the locals and that some experienced experts had to be found at once if there was any hope of saving the children. Answering the call were some veterans of the British Armed Forces: Rick Stanton (Viggo Mortensen), a 60-year-old retired diver; John Volanthen (Colin Farrell), an underwater veteran who frequently joined Stanton on his expeditions; Richard Harris (Joel Edgarton), diver and anesthesiologist; and Chris Jewell (Tom Bateman), who comes up with a seemingly far-fetched plan to save the kids. Ultimately, 17 Navy SEALs were enlisted for this endeavor; In fact, a Thai diver died, while another died a year later from a blood infection.

The heroic doctor from the movie “Rescue” recounts the dramatic mission to rescue the children trapped in the Thai cave: “I was sure it wouldn’t work”

The obstacles were so enormous and numerous that the odds of success were slim, to say the least: the passages through the cave system seemed hardly large enough for the young man to slip through, let alone the old men with equipment; The rocky surfaces were sticky and slippery; Communication was difficult. With each passing day, the chances of finding the boys and getting them out alive diminishes dramatically.

At the same time, the scene near the entrance to the cave soon took on a carnival-like atmosphere; In addition to the countless army and police authorities, only the media and curiosity crowded the jungle area, where row after row of fast food tents appeared. One wouldn’t want to call the scene festive, but it certainly took on the appearance of a tourist destination.

The style of the film coincides with this chaotic scene in a clever way. Except for the Trapped Boys, everyone here is always in motion, and the style pairs brilliantly with the nerve-wracking nature of the story, every minute. Form and function are in healthy harmony here. Filming on location in Thailand as well as in Australia, director Howard has enlisted the services of Thai cinematographer Sayombo Mukdeprom, who has expanded his career in recent years by collaborating with international filmmakers such as Luca Guadagnino on Call me by your name And the sobsand with Apichatpong Weerasethakul memory.

Together, they adopt a gritty, sloppy, and extremely sloppy visual approach to material that speeds up the action nonstop. At roughly two and a half hours, the film could have profited from losing another 10 minutes or so, or by investing a few moments to provide at least a climax in the lives and careers of the veterans who, despite their presence, could have made a difference. ages, they were willing to enter the fray and risk their lives in this extremely dangerous challenge.

thirteen livesfrom MGM, gets a one-week theatrical release on July 29 and starts globally August 5 on Prime Video.

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