Sunday, October 13, 2013
Captain Phillips: Waterlogged
There's a scene early in this based-on-a-true-story thriller when Captain Phillips (Tom Hanks), binoculars in place, focuses on a pirate skiff rapidly approaching his cargo ship off the coast of Somalia. He sees the pirate captain staring back at him through his binoculars.
This is not a good-guys-bad-guys movie. It's a battle between worthy opponents.
Captain Phillips is doing what he must do and so is Captain Muse.
For all its high-seas adventure, however, this flick did not blow the Movie Slut out of the water.
Yes, there were some brilliant scenes and some fine acting, but a few problems kept her from full enjoyment. The most important: Why was a cargo ship coasting through known pirate-infested waters without any security? Not even a handgun. (Doesn't every American have one of these?)
But seriously, this plot point was difficult to swallow. And it turns out, it should be. Although the movie doesn't delve into this, according to some sources and a lawsuit, the real Captain Phillips disobeyed orders and, to save time and money, took his ship too close to the Somali coastline.
So do movies have to cleave to the truth? Absolutely not. But when they fabricate and force the viewer to cleave to disbelief, that is a problem.
Hopefully, you'll be able to suspend with disbelieve though the MS could not. And while she's at it, why was the most despised company in the US — Haliburton — mentioned in a positive light more than once in this movie?
There's nothing MS hates more than being manipulated. Instead of making Dick Cheney's company appear more warm and fuzzy, these plugs pulled her out of the movie, leaving her thinking it was a pretty fishy tale.