Daniel’s Critical Corner: “The Finest Hours”

It Would Be Much Warmer In SPARTA !!!

Hello Everyone !
~ Welcome to Daniel’s Critical Corner ~
Take Some Time to Enjoy:
The Finest Hours


Walt Disney Pictures’ rousing rescue adventure has finally splashed down,
and it is guaranteed to chill you to the bone !  Especially if you forget your
jacket.  Heck, theaters are pretty cold this time of year.  No matter where
you reside (tropical or tundra) “The Finest Hours” will shiver your timbers !

This harrowing true story stars a fine fellow who most of you will recognize
as Captain James T. Kirk from the recent “Star Trek” flicks, Mr. Chris Pine.
It would have been great to have William Shatner on board, if only to hear
his version of a New England accent.

The action takes place near Cape Cod, in the early fifties.  A dashing dude
(a crewman in the Coast Guard) is trying to woo Lucille Ball’s doppelgänger.
Bernard “Bernie” Webber (Pine) initially puts his best foot forward.  But he
flubs up and the aforementioned foot winds up in his mouth !

Miriam (played by Holliday Grainger) is an adorable dame, yet Bernie says
she looks like Yogi Bear !  Or was it Yogi Berra ?  Well, Miriam is sporting a
fur coat and he makes a rather grizzly joke.  Oh, I remember now, he says
she resembles Smokey the Bear !  Beats Fuzzy Wuzzy, I suppose.

Fuzzy…  Whoops, I mean Miriam…  Just giggles daintily and falls head over
heals for the enthusiastic Bernie.  After a few dates, they decide to attend
a sock hop (or whatever dance parties were called back in 1952).  Bernie’s
quite the dancer, and he teaches Miriam his moves.

As they twirl about, Miriam asks Bernie to marry her !!!   He has a hissy fit
and runs outside.  He thinks his job’s too dangerous, and that he might be
hurt in the line of duty.  She says she is willing to take that chance…


I’m A Chicken When It Comes To The Sea !!!


These two characters do have a certain amount of chemistry, and Holliday
is a great actress, but everything seems rushed.  She also becomes a total
worrywart right away.  Miriam’s role in the movie is borderline gratuitous at
times.  Nevertheless, every romantic element stays afloat.

Bernie has to get permission from his boss to marry Miriam, but as he tries
a giant winter storm’s wrecking havoc on the ocean.  Several ships nearby
are in peril, and it ain’t long before our hero has to leave his lady high and
dry !

Miriam attempts to call, but Bernard doesn’t want to brawl about a squall, so
he risks it all.  He is put in charge of a rescue mission, with only three other
sailors willing to help him !  Turns out, an oil tanker (The SS Pendleton) has
snapped in half, and hope for the survivors is sinking fast !!!

All he has at his disposal is a small boat designed to hold a few people.  The
problem is, there are roughly thirty guys aboard the troubled tanker.  But he
is determined to make it work !  Drawing inspiration from Titanic’s Rose, and
all the people she saved on her little plank…  Oh, wait…  Never mind.

Meanwhile, the salty dogs on the Pendleton are doing what they can to keep
away from a watery doom.  Ray Sybert, a soft-spoken bloke (Casey Affleck)
manages to employ some crazy survival techniques !  At first, the crew balks
at his suggestions, but Ray’s advice buys them time…

Bernard is riding the waves (in grand fashion) with his small crew on his tiny
Tinkertoy tugboat.  Everyone’s telling him he should turn back, and that this
rescue mission is insane.  Bernie won’t hear any of it.  Not only because his
ears are iced-over, but because this is what he signed up for !!!


We’re In Trouble.  My Dinghy Is Frozen Solid.


When the floating thimble arrives at its destination, the suspense becomes
almost unbearable !!!  My tummy was in nautical knots as the Coast Guard
guys try to figure out what to do.  People are poised to perish !!!

What happens next is literally one for the history books !  All of the actors
bring this true story to life, in memorable ways.  Pine is unforgettable, and
Affleck really rocks (the boat) !  Eric Bana plays a top banana with plenty
of aplomb, and Ben Foster is also on deck.

The special effects really make a splash in this amazing period piece.  Each
huge wave created by the sinister snowstorm is intimidating and formidable
(and every scene is flooded with magnificent performances) !

 Come rain or shine, check out “The Finest Hours”  !!!


Would I Recommend This ?  Yes

Daniel’s Critical Rating:  8 out of 10

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