Kernel Rating (out of 5):
MPAA Rating: PG-13 Length: 114 minutes
Age Appropriate for: 13+. Some cursing and some kissing, but this movie isn’t about those things. As a recreation of the 2004 tsunami and its impact on Thailand, the film has a harrowing, terrifying portrayal of the natural disaster, with numerous characters dying as a result, a large amount of corpses and gory wounds, and an overly disarming atmosphere. For audience, it’s incredibly squeamish in a way we’re not used to experiencing in film.
‘The Impossible’ is getting flack for its focus on a British family’s attempts to survive in Thailand after the 2004 tsunami, instead of making the story broader and including more victims who don’t happen to be white. That’s a fair criticism, but the film’s performances and its shocking portrayal of the tsunami’s devastation are riveting.
By Roxana Hadadi
It’s staggering to realize the Dec. 26 tsunami that took place as a result of an earthquake in the Indian Ocean, that killed about 230,000 people in Asian coastal nations like Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, and Thailand, was eight years ago. Where has the time gone? What has happened to the people affected, to the regions impacted? News coverage was insane in the days and weeks after the tsunami, and then, of course, the stories disappeared. Jettisoning the tsunami to our minds again is “The Impossible,” with its fairly true story of a family struggling to find each other after the disaster. With strong performances and harrowing visual effects, “The Impossible” is overwhelming in both good and bad ways—even as it raises questions about how we come to care about tragedies.