The Finest Hours

(2016)

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Title:
The Finest Hours
Release Date:
25th January 2016
Runtime:
114 min
MPAA Rating:
PG-13
Genres:
Directors:
Craig Gillespie
Writers:
Paul Tamasy, Scott Silver
Languages:
English
Stream Quality:
1080p / 720p / 480p

Storyline

In February of 1952, one of the worst storms to ever hit the East Coast struck New England, damaging an oil tanker off the coast of Cape Cod and literally ripping it in half. On a small lifeboat faced with frigid temperatures and 70-foot high waves, four members of the Coast Guard set out to rescue the more than 30 stranded sailors trapped aboard the rapidly-sinking vessel.

Ratings

Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 63%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience 68%
IMDb Rating 6.8

Casts

Ben Foster as Richard Livesey
Casey Affleck as Ray Sybert
Chris Pine as Bernie Webber
Eric Bana as Daniel Cluff
Holliday Grainger as Miriam Webber

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Gino Cox 12th May, 2016

Three intersecting stories, of which one works very well

"The Finest Hours" presents three stories, or perhaps one story from three perspectives. The stories are perhaps better described as intersecting rather than interwoven as developments in each storyline have relatively little effect on the other story lines other than points of intersection. The most successful story is one of survival aboard a doomed ship in a fierce storm. Casey Afflect delivers a brilliant performance, possibly the best of his career, as an engineer who must win the respect of the crew and devise a seeming impossible plan to ensure their survival. But the putative hero of the story is played by Chris Pine as a disgraced seaman thrust into a leadership position who manages a heroic rescue by alternatively slavishly adhering to regulations and blatantly disregarding them, but steadfastly pressing on by sheer obstinacy and succeeding by dumb luck. The least successful story is a romance between Pine's character and a local girl who somehow manages to afford a car on a switchboard operator's salary, walks through snowdrifts in high heels without slipping or marring her shine, defies convention and embarrasses her boyfriend by proposing marriage, and barges into the all-male preserve of the Coast Guard station to demand that the commander commit an unconscionable act of cowardice in an exchange that might have been ghostwritten by the screenwriter's five- year-old daughter. Having never read the book, it's difficult to tell what parts were embellished for dramatic impact, but much of the story seems hopelessly contrived. Critical pieces of equipment (radar, compass, radio) malfunction and miraculously return to service as if on cue. At one point, a large group of bystanders race off in support of the rescue effort and one expects them to activate certain items, but strangely nobody does until the love interest does, almost as an afterthought, and everybody else decides to follow suit, leaving the audience wondering why they went there if they didn't intend to do it in the first place. At another somebody shouts out a number referring to a group of people he could not possibly have counted. This is another film that the #OscarsSoWhite and advocates of gender pay parity would rather audiences not see. It's basically a story of real men in the 1950s male-dominated era doing manly things while the womenfolk stay at home being supportive, raising children and mourning those who sacrificed their lives supporting their families. It was only four years after Eisenhower ended segregation in the military and the Coast Guard and various maritime labor unions were probably about as integrated as the Ku Klux Klan. But this would never do in the twenty-first century when studios feel pressured to compromise dramatic structure in favor of political correctness. Consequently, two subplots seem to have been added and/or expanded to provide more diversity for audiences who prefer diversity over drama. One involves a black seaman whose cowardice results in the death of a Caucasian who takes him under his wing. The second is the romantic subplot, which is given roughly equal weight and screen time with the two other through lines. The story is not particularly interesting. The girl is a typical chick flick heroine – pretty but not gorgeous, more cherubic than voluptuous, virtuous and steadfast to a fault, with an anachronistic feminist streak. Both subplots could have been easily eliminated. Perhaps the film would not have been quite the critical or commercial disappointment if they had been sharply trimmed or eliminated. The theme and moral seem weak. A theme concerning luck and happenstance undermines some of the effect, as do several plot contrivances, such as the equipment malfunctions. The episode is supposedly one of the greatest sea rescues in history, but it's presented as the consequence of doggedly plodding along in blind subservience to duty rather than anything one would ordinarily equate with heroism. Technically, the film is top shelf. The period props, costumes, settings and make-up all seem authentic. There is a refreshing lack of distracting jiggly-cam shots. The special effects seem realistic. It lays on the schmaltz fairly heavily at points, but what can one expect from Disney? It might have been more compelling if it had concentrated on the survival story, eliminated the love story and trimmed the rescue story.

Reviewed by mark smith 7th February, 2016

Loved this movie, the whole family will love this pulse pounding roller coaster

This director has pushed the bounds of new camera angles. The story was brought to life in a very dramatic way. A story about people who run into burning buildings when were all running out. Told in a new novel way, that draws you in. This movie riveted me to the seat, read the amazon reviews for the book...same thing. I've been very suspicious of Disney movies recently and will only let my kids watch them after I've seen them. This movie is safe for the family, a little to intense for the young. But it is the way movies should be made to create role models for the youth to emulate. Real Men, Real Heroes I believe there is a move to discredit movies like this. I'm been on sail boats in waves 1/4 the size in this movie and I was wondering if I was going to make it.

Reviewed by bankofmarquis 2nd February, 2016

Edge of your seat action

The FINEST HOURS is a rip-roaring, edge of your seat action thriller that will keep you guessing all the way to the end. There....that should get me on the poster. That said, I will have to admit that I had low to middling expectations going into this film and it exceeded my expectation in almost every way. Starting with the Cast. Chris Pine (good ol' Cap't Kirk) stars as Bernie Webber a mid-level Coast Guard officer who is flung into the forefront when an oil barge splits in half in very rough sees during a storm. Pine presents Webber not as a square-jawed hero, but a real person with doubts and insecurities but a strict code of ethics and when his Capt. (the always capable Eric Bana) sends him out for what could be a suicide mission, he goes out. While Pine holds down half of this movie, Casey Affleck holds down the other half as the leader of the group of survivors on the oil tanker. Normally, I am not a big fan of Affleck's work, but in this movie, I sure am. He is a man of few words and tells much with his expression. If there is a "squared jawed hero" in this movie, it is Affleck. These two are supported by a veritable who's who of "that guy" actors. Ben Foster, John Ortiz, Michael Raymond James and good ol' Abraham Benrubi are just the tip of the iceberg, so to speak, of wonderful character actors filling the roles of other Coast Guard members and crewmen of the doomed ship. Only Holliday Grainger as Pine's strong-willed fiance fails for me, but I blame a weak written character more than her acting for that one. But, make no mistake, it is the action that makes this movie exciting. From the opening where the oil ship splits in half through the attempt to get out to the ocean to find the doomed ship to the actual rescue itself, I was on pins and needles, literally vaulting myself up out of my seat to get over a wave at one point. Director Craig Gillespie, not known as an action director, does a nice job of leading us through these scenes, I am anxious to see what he takes on next. I hope it is another action flick. Is it a great film? No. The opening (after the tanker accident) drags and the movie bounces around in tone trying to find out what kind of movie it wants to be, but once Pine and company goes out to sea to rescue, the movie zips along just fine. 7 (out of 10) stars and you can take that to the Bank (of Marquis)

Reviewed by Paul Allaer 31st January, 2016

Good ol' fashioned disaster-and-rescue drama is better than the

"The Finest Hours" (2016 release; 117 min.) brings the telling, "based on a true story" we are reminded, of a daring rescue attempt at sea. As the movie opens, it is "Wellfleet, MA, November 1951", and we get to know two Coast Guarders who are out on a double date. Bernie (played by Chris Pine) is immediately smitten by Miriam *played by Holiday Grainger). The movie then shifts to February 17, 1952, where Bernie and Miriam are attending a party, and they decide to get married in April. Later that night, as a nor'easter is bearing down, the Pendleton tanker is in serious trouble, and before we know it, Bernie is ordered to assemble a crew and go out to find any survivors of the Pendleton. To tell you more would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out. Couple of comments: this is a big budget movie from Disney Studios, directed by Craig Gillespie ("Lars and The Real Girl"; "Million Dollar Arm"). If you have seen the movie's trailer (which as been inescapable in the theaters in recent weeks), you know exactly what you are in for: a bigger-than-life, against-all-odds rescue attempt of the crew of the Pendleton tanker, which has split in two, by a four man crew of the Coast Guard in Chatham, MA. Don't ask me how the Pendleton's remaining half tanker doesn't sink! I think it has something to do with the boat's balancing tanks, but in the end it doesn't matter, as we are here to witness some of the wildest open sea disaster scenes you'll ever see. In a sense, this reminds of "Titanic", except that the action scenes are pumped up and on steroids. Chris Pine (as Bernie) and Casey Affleck (as the Pendleton's main guy) are fine, but to be honest, they and the rest of the gang are all second fiddle to the special effects. I know that it's all CGI, yet it looks so darn realistic! The movie has a great orchestral score, courtesy of veteran composer Carter Burwell (his score for "Carol" received an Oscar nomination). Also make sure to stay through the movie's end titles, as we then get a bunch of period pictures from the Boston Globe and other news sources with the real life people from the events (and likely the source of the costuming for the film). Last but not least, this is released both in 2D and 3D, but just know that the movie was shot in 2D and then converted into 3D (I saw it in 2D). Bottom line: "The Finest Hours" is a good ol' fashioned disaster-and-rescue drama that is much better than the "experts" would have you believe. "The Finest Hours" opened nationally this weekend, and the Friday evening screening where I saw this at here in Cincinnati was attended okay but not great. somewhat to my surprise. Regardless, if you are in the mood for an effects-heavy but very realistic disaster-and-rescue movie, I encourage you to check this out, be it in the theater, on Amazon Instant Video or eventually on DVD/Blu-ray (although a movie of this kind just begs to be seen on the big screen). "The Finest Hours" is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

Reviewed by DarkVulcan29 ([email protected]) 31st January, 2016

If you liked The Perfect Storm, then give The Finest Hours a look.

Takes place in the early 1950's where a giant storm dominates the seas by breaking a tanker truck in half, with only a few hours left to survive, the crew id does what they can survive. A rescue ship is sent to try and get to them, but the question is will they ? I love the early 50's look, it captures it so perfectly. Everybody gives a good performance, almost nobody stands out. The storms scenes are also well shot, you'll feel caught up in the storm also. It keeps you on the edge of your seat. It's easy to compare this to The Perfect storm(2000), it has the same feel to it. I hope you won't be disappointed by this.