Movie Review – The Perfect Storm

The Perfect Storm

Directed by Wolfgang Peterson

Starring George Clooney, Mark Wahlberg, Diane Lane, Karen Allen, William Fichtner, Bob Gunton, and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio.

I will confess, I had zero expectations towards The Perfect Storm. The TV spots weren’t grabbing me, and most descriptions I read online made it sound like some kind of lame Titanic wannabe. I was going to skip over it completely this summer, but I’ve seen a few other blockbusters now, and the trailer for The Perfect Storm seemed to be in front of each one. The trailers made it look better than the TV spots, and so I took a “what the hey? I’ll see it” attitude towards it.

Capt. Billy Tyne (Clooney) is the captain of the Andrea Gail, a swordfish boat, and he’s hit the biggest slump of his career. The fish just aren’t biting for him, and the season is coming to a close. His crew, led by a rookie (Wahlberg) is starting to lose faith in their captain. Things just aren’t good for this crew. Out of desperation, Tyne takes his boat out one last time, knowing that the fish are out there, and that this time they’ll bite for him. He takes the boat further out than ever before, and he hits paydirt. They get a hold full of fish, but their ice machine is broke. They’ve got to get home, and quick. It’ll mean plowing through a hurricane, but they’ll do it. But, unbeknownst to them, the hurricane has escalated into a once-in-a-lifetime phenomenon known as a “perfect storm.” Can the crew survive this perfect storm? Will the rookie get back home to his girl, who’s weathering the storm at home? Will the coast guard rescue the crew in time?

This is just one damn good movie. I don’t know what life on a real fishing boat is like, but if it’s anything like this, sign me up. The crew are just a bunch of average folks, and reminded me of my time on a gravel crusher all those summers ago. All the advertising seems to be leaving out the sub-plot about the Coast Guard’s search, which is just as good as the main plot. Mastrantonio adds just the right touch as the captain of a rival boat, and a love interest for Clooney. The special effects are just amazing. We get to see cargo ships and supertankers trying to weather the storm. And the ending! It actually made me cry. A few minor quibbles (the score was done by the same guy who did the music for Titanic, and at times it sounds like Titanic leftovers), but don’t let that stop you. SEE THIS MOVIE!

3.5 Nibs

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