Some movies affect you more than others, especially if they’re based on true events. The Impossible is a different kind of a disaster movie offering an engaging and emotional story. We will be following a family who finds itself right in the strike zone of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. Real life is the ultimate storyteller offering surreal stories full of powerful concepts that really did happen. You have this beautiful island, stunning beaches and a whole lot of happy people. And then, in mere moments, this heaven on Earth turns into a living hell.
Some of the scenes in The Impossible hit me so hard that I just randomly start thinking about them. And while the one where the wave hits is certainly an impactful one, I still can’t shake the one with Naomi Watts trying to come up for air. This is the stuff nightmares are made out of. The Spanish director Antonio Bayona (The Orphanage) will put you front and center amidst this horrific situation. I still can’t fully comprehend how the fuck did he pull this off. These are huge sets that look utterly realistic, just like someone used high-quality filming equipment in a middle of a disaster.
To make things even crazier, the filming location is the actual motherfucking resort! The rebuilding process took some time but it looks just as stunning as it did on that fateful day in 2004. It took a whole year for the production team to put together those scenes showing just how committed they are. I had no idea what happens when the tsunami hits and The Impossible showed me exactly that, in vivid detail. However, apart from stunning visuals, this movie also offers a very moving story about a family torn apart. Get ready for an emotional journey like no other with any traces of cheap melodrama. The experienced cast led by Ewan McGregor and Naomi Watts did a terrific job. I especially liked the performances of our three young and very talented actors.
Doctor Maria Bennett is a happy woman. She, her husband Henry, and their three kids just landed in Thailand. They intend to spend their Christmas holiday there, in a beautiful sunny resort. Everything seems perfect. The sea is warm, the sun is shining and everybody is having a lot of fun. However, not too far away, in the Indian Ocean, a big earthquake shakes both the ground and the water. And a huge wave starts traveling towards Thailand. What happens next is a devastating nightmare…
Now, I know that all of this seems rather dark but I assure you that The Impossible is not such a bleak movie. It realistically looks at this situation without sensationalism and emotional milking. Something that could’ve easily happened just like in other, similar movies. On the other hand, the scale of destruction is almost unimaginable. 230.000 people are no longer with us because of this tsunami. And those who survived are still reeling from that tragic disaster. It is our human fate to overcome these obstacles and persevere.
Director: Juan Antonio Bayona
Writers: Sergio G. Sánchez, María Belón
Cast: Naomi Watts, Ewan McGregor, Tom Holland, Samuel Joslin, Oaklee Pendergast
Fun Facts: Many of the survivors of the Tsunami were extras in this movie.