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Deepwater Horizon – Film Review

Most people wouldn’t recognise the name of the film, but when you mention the BP oil spill in 2010 they get you straight away. The news at the time was filled with reports of the gallons of oil that was flowing into the Gulf of Mexico, a bad news story that carried on from April until July. It was the largest oil spill in the United States waters. Public opinion and disgust was pointed at BP, with the view that they were utterly reckless, however, many onlookers failed to see that of the 126 crew members who were on board the vessel, seven were employees of BP and 11 actually perished in flames.

Peter Berg captures this drama that will go down in history and conveys the tragedy through film. Deepwater Horizon includes an impressive cast of veterans including Mark Wahlberg, Kurt Russell, John Malkovich through to Kate Hudson. The storyline follows the lives of the engineers, technicians and a whole host of crew members who ended up having to do the impossible on the 20th April 2010.

Berg’s talent for telling a story through non-fiction narratives and by leaning on initiate documentary style filmmaking can be clearly seen in Deepwater Horizon, as could be seen in his other two successes Friday Night Lights and 2013’s Lone Survivor.

The film is full of visual experiences that are overwhelming whilst delivered with starling humanity. He uses Mark Wahlberg’s character as he walks through the rig, having banter will his fellow co-workers, whilst Berg’s aim was to use these scenes as a casual way to talk the audience through the rig and understand the ins and outs of the film – very clever.

It’s a compelling film to watch but not fun. You will be fixed to the film whilst you are cowering, cringing or covering your eyes at the explicit way the story tells and relives the horrific tragedy. The pain of those who were actually involved is expertly conveyed by Berg in his storytelling and effects. He also touches on why this has to happen, who was to blame and how can it be avoided.

It’s a great film to watch and carries a lot of interest and is a great commemoration for the victims and for this the film must be applauded.


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Date: 27th September 2016
Deepwater Horizon – Film Review

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