Just a couple of thoughts about THE FINEST HOURS – a Coast Guard rescue movie based on a true event of a tanker that split in half off of Cape Cod in the very early fifties (actually 2 tankers split). Since the movie takes place during a pretty severe “Nor’Easter”, the cold of the screen emanates out to the audience. Suggestion come to the movie dressed very warmly. Hard to explain but you can easily start feeling cold watching this film which then makes the movie watching experience a bit uncomfortable (bring a snack too as cold tends to make one hungry).
I must say the previews for this film just locked me in as a must-see, action thriller, sea rescue, true story. When looking for show times out of the corner of my eye I saw the metrics of the reviewers and must say I was surprised that the number was less than glowing. I think that played in my mind a little bit as I went to this movie and watched it unfold in front of me.
I am not sure if it’s because most of the actors had rather thick eastern Massachusetts accents or it was just a bad movie print (or I’m getting old)but it was pretty hard, especially at the beginning, to catch all the words of the actors. Also there was sort of a back story about a prior, failed Coast Guard rescue that was an important part of the store and wasn’t explained well at all.
Plus they also use some Coast Guard and ocean terminology that took awhile for you to understand. What it meant within the context of the movie definitely was important and let me to in other ways led to me as a watcher feeling like I’ve missed some parts of the movie.
Let me top it off to share my frustration in tying to find a version of this movie on the big screen that WAS NOT in 3D or IMAX (both of which are generally just a “money grab”). A well made film with solid special effects doesn’t need screen enhancements unless it is trying to cover up some less promising part(s) of the film
So I’m clearly not glowing so far in this review and other hiccups I thought were some of the scenes were set out in incredibly bad weather yet the boats weren’t rocking. Or at points the actors are in this big storm and their hair is staying in place or snow not sticking to car windshields at all etc.
I sound like I’m picky but I just didn’t feel like I was “taken away”. The sub-story of a budding love affair was drawn out and really not that apropos. Folks it was a coast guard sea rescue…stay there and focus.
It is not that I didn’t like it…rather I was so amped up to see it and it just dragged as the it didn’t pull you to the edge of your seat like it should have. Decent acting jobs from Chris Pine (Captain Kirk, Jack Ryan etc.); Casey Affleck, Eric Bana but nothing remarkable or remotely memorable.