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Movie Reviews
by Todd Pearage

Deepwater Horizon (1/10/2017)

Rated PG-13 for prolonged intense disaster sequences and related disturbing images, and brief strong language.

Starring Mark Wahlberg, Kurt Russell, John Malkovich, Gina Rodriguez, Dylan O’Brien and Kate Hudson

Directed by Peter Berg (Lone Survivor, The Kingdom and Friday Night Lights)

Todd's Rating: Theatre Worthy

Dynamic ImagePeer Berg delivers a good old fashion disaster flick…but this one actually happened.

In April 2010, there is no oil exploration operation in the Gulf of Mexico to compare with the Deepwater Horizon oil rig with its size or sheer depth of its drilling. However, the project for the BP Oil Company is beset with technical difficulties to the point where the general operational supervisor, Jimmy Harrell, and his Chief Electrical Engineer, Mike Williams, are concerned potentially dangerous trouble is brewing. Unfortunately, visiting BP executives, frustrated by the project's long delays, order curtailed site inspections and slanted system tests to make up for lost time even as Harrell, Williams and his team helplessly protest for the sake of proper safety. On April 20, the workers' fears are realized in the worst possible way when the rig's various structural and system flaws spark a catastrophic cascade of failures that would create a massive blowout and explosion that threatens them all, even as it also begins the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history.

The Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion in the Gulf of Mexico stunned the world and this movie is spectacular and unsettlingly realistic. Berg doesn’t just wow us with explosions and special effects, he wants to get our hearts pumping with adrenaline and some righteous indignation. This wasn’t just the biggest oil spill in history, 11 workers died in the disaster and Berg lays the blame firmly at BP’s door.

The first half of the movie shows us the 12-hours before the tragedy. Honestly it’s a little slow and filled with so much information about the rig, drilling, tests and worst case scenarios. We also get introduced to the key players, both the good guys – rig workers and the bad guys – the suits.

But stick with it because when the action starts it is relentless and intense until the credits roll. Berg masterfully shoots the chaos with quick cuts and hand-held cameras, which adds to the intensity.

Wahlberg and Russell are perfect and very convincing as the hardened men of rig and when faced with certain death they rise up like heroes do.

Although I was familiar with the story, I had no idea who died and who survived so I was glued to my seat. And I think you will be too…it’s “Theater Worthy.”

A man and his wife are seen in bed together, they then start to kiss and sex is implied. We also see a man in the shower, but no nudity is seen.

The violence is intense and graphic at times. Both the rig exploding and fire are very realistic-looking.

There is one use of the F-word and multiple uses of the S-word.

  1. How would you describe the difference between the BP executives and the oil rig workers?

  2. Why do you think the executives don’t listen to them?

  3. Read Proverbs 16:18

      Pride goes before destruction, and haughtiness before a fall.

  4. How can you protect yourself from “destruction”?

  5. Read James 4:6

      God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.

  6. How can you practice humility this week?

Todd Pearage Todd Pearage is a movie buff at heart, but he's not your traditional film critic. Todd is a blue collar film geek, from his job years ago at Blockbuster to his heartfelt online movie reviews. But Todd isn't just a film geek. He has worked with middle and high school students since 1991 as a youth pastor and is currently on staff at Calvary Church in Souderton, PA. Todd and his wife Lynda have three children, Brianna, Caleb and Addyson.

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