Deepwater Horizon reenacts the horrific events that took place on the 20th of April 2010. Situated in the Gulf of Mexico, the Deepwater Horizon oil rig experienced a catastrophic blowout. This huge blowout resulted in a huge explosion and unstoppable fire. As the hellish blaze tor through the huge rig, countless acts of bravery were carried out by the crew. But the tragedy claimed the lives of eleven men, with a further seventeen workers injured. What followed, became known as the BP oil spill. The biggest ecological disaster in American history.
It's fair to say, that there have been many disaster movies made over the years. Most of them have a terrible narrative but generally have had great success at the box office. However, what makes Deepwater Horizon stand out from your usual disaster film. Is that it is actually based on a true historical event. Successfully delivering a compelling account of ordinary people who carry out extraordinary acts. As they are caught in a horrific scramble for survival.
For me, this was the first film that I had seen from the director Peter Berg. I'm sure you will agree, that Berg does an outstanding job re-creating the enormity of the disaster. Instead of relying on CGI, berg chose to create an impressive realism. Creating a huge replica of the actual Deepwater Horizon oil rig. Possibly one of the largest sets ever. Add to this some incredible camera work and the end result is one of the most amazing cinematic experiences. It's clear that this film would have been best seen on the largest screen possible.
On top of that, the cast provides a respectful multi-layered performance. Yes, first and foremost this is an action blockbuster. So don't expect Oscar-winning performances. But, for me, Deepwater Horizon is easily Mark Wahlberg‘s career-best performance playing real-life hero Mike Williams. Add to that, a powerful performance from Kurt Russell and it's fair to say that these two are the real standouts. However, the casting of John Malcovich who plays the corporate villain is a masterstroke too.
Now, the three leads do carry the film. However, the rest of the cast do a fine job. Kate Hudson is great playing the wife of Mike Williams. Providing a touching sense of the horror felt by the loved ones who are watching the disaster unfold. Both, Dylan O'Brien and Ethan Suplee are great. But all of the vast cast do a great job delivering an incredibly tense journey.
All in all, Deepwater Horizon does a great job of providing a detailed explanation of the sequence of failings that caused the explosion. It is visually amazing and had countless nominations for achievements in sound. But it's true strength is that it succeeds in providing a fitting tribute to the bravery of those involved.