We saw The Impossible in the cinema yesterday. It’s a hollywood movie, so my expectations were written in stone before we even got to the theatre. I expected a relatively emotional but predictable film about a family’s struggle to survive a disaster, but that was it. Hollywood movies are mainly flat, no depth (with regards to cinematography, not acting), cliché scripts. On the contrary, I was surprised.
The film was well shot and deliberately put together from the beginning. The camera is placed deliberately and moved deliberately in every shot. The mise-en-scene was impeccable. I’ve never seen any films from this set of directors, but they’ve proved themselves.
Then there was the script. I expected the norm for this kind of film, emotional, pulling heart strings, but no depth and very little meaning. I was wrong again. There was a beautiful allegory a little while into the film. One of the children of the family is in a refugee camp after the wave, and is looking up at the stars. He’s joined by a stranger, who explains to him that some of the stars he is looking at have already burnt out; they don’t exist anymore, but their light was so strong that we can still see them today. He says, ‘So they’re dead?’ and she says yes. He asks her, ‘How can you tell which ones are dead?’ and she replies, ‘It’s impossible.’ and I think that it’s a tragic but perfect allegory for the situation of the thousands of deaths from the Tsunami. You couldn’t tell who was dead and who wasn’t. And I’m glad that they derived the title of the film from that line, because it’s beautiful.
tagged as: The Impossible, Tsunami 2004, on,