The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

BP oil spill exposed in “Deepwater Horizon”

“It was the worst oil disaster in U.S. history.”

Deepwater Horizon is a biographical disaster-thriller movie about the 2010 explosion of the oil rig with the same name off the coast of Louisiana, which led to thousands of gallons of petroleum being leaked into the Gulf of Mexico.

A film based on such a scarring event is usually hit or miss. However, Director Peter Berg hit the nail on the head with this one. Unlike his last movie at sea, Battleship, this one staged the action well and was brave enough to openly place the blame on BP. He captured the horrors and grisly chaos. With this film, the lives of the 11 lost are remembered, and the impact of the event is felt. From the start of the movie, there were ominous and discreet signs hinting that something bad was coming. For the audience who knows that tragedy will strike, these hints were clear and it was only a matter of time before the drama began.

What really stood out to me was the cast. I really thought they were amazing. Playing fictional characters is one thing, actors can make it their own; however I think it’s harder and more pressure for them to play real people during a terrible situation that actually happened. Mark Wahlberg had a lead role, playing Mike Williams, who was the Chief Electronics Technician on the oil rig. When the explosion happened, he spent most of the time saving others; he is the first person we meet in the movie – him and his wife Felicia, played by Kate Hudson. Other notable performances came from Kurt Russel, Gina Rodriguez, Dylan O’Brian and John Malkovich. Russel played Jimmy Harnell, or as everyone called him “Mr. Jimmy.” He spent the rest of the movie after the explosion with his eyes swollen shut and bleeding from multiple places, but still surged on and performed his moral duties as the offshore installation manager.

The special and visual effects in this movie were astounding. There were a lot of effects involved in making this so if they had lacked in any way this movie could have gotten a slightly worse response. Much of the focus was on the flaming chaos that had become of the rig; it turned into a floating tower of fire. Naturally with fire everywhere and the whole structure falling apart, everyone had injuries here and there. At one point I had my hands over my eyes because someone’s leg had gotten stuck under a huge piece of metal. But it wasn’t the leg itself that was stuck, it was the protruding bone. At least from what I saw of that, it looked pretty realistic.

Just as John Malkovich’s character mentioned, things are comprised of many parts – if one falters the whole organization (or in this case, movie) suffers. Every aspect of this movie was essential in creating an ideal disaster film, and they were all outstanding. Watching a fiery hell in the middle of the sea with people covered in mud, blood, and soot running for their lives while dramatic music plays left an intense sad feeling. Overall, it is a must see.

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