BY THE COMMANDER
2 (out of 4 stars)
Unless you’ve been born in the last four years (which would make you too young to be able to read this review) you probably are well aware of the 2010 Copiapó Mining accident (aka Chilean mining accident). However, if you don't remember the exact event, it was a mine collapse where a group of 33 miners were trapped underground for 69 days awaiting rescue. While this event dragged out in the news and became less dramatic as time went on, it was still one of the greatest rescues in mining history. While I won't get into the politics of mining, I will say it is one of the most dangerous jobs on the planet, since over 99% of minors that are trapped in a mine collapse and never get to see daylight again.
This film is based on the book, “Deep Down Dark” by Hector Tobar, who wasn’t one of the trapped miners, but was able to recant the stories obtained from the men that were trapped. Hollywood then adapted it into a screenplay and movie starring Antonio Banderas and Lou Diamond Phillips.
I have mixed emotions about this film. There are things I enjoyed and others I didn't. I liked the fact that they didn't spend a whole lot of time at the beginning trying to explain who all of the different characters were, as they do in all those Hollywood disaster movies, using up valuable screen time for unnecessary characters and subplots. This screenplay jumped right to the heart of the story, which was the mine collapse, and the events that took place leading up to the rescue.
What I didn't like about this film was the ending. I felt it was flat with no emotion. The producers showed the real miners who were trapped underground, by using a scene taken from “The Last Supper” as the miners sat around a wooden table having a feast on the beach. Then instead of matching up the actor with the actual person, they just showed the miner and his name. There was no cohesion. Without showing you a side-by-side comparison, you couldn't match anyone, thereby making the scene irrelevant. So much more could have been done. Instead, this scene just fell flat and left you leaving the theater empty handed. Instead of that great moment, like having your team throw the winning touchdown, you felt like you just lost the game, leaving the stadium with your tail between your legs.
This is not a movie that needs to be seen in the theater, as there was no spectacular cinematography that required a big screen. There are many scenes where the screen is pitch black. I would recommend you wait for this to come out and watch it on your home theater system. Make sure you turn off all the lights, because most of this film is shot in very, very dark places.