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Captain Phillips (2013): Tom Hanks, Barkhad Abdi, Barkhad Abdirahman, Faysal Ahmed, Mahat M. Ali


Captain Phillips is a true story based on the 2009 hijacking by Somali pirates of the US MV Maersk Alabama.   This harrowing tale is a gripping thriller between Captain Phillips, Tom Hanks, the crew of the Alabama, an unarmed ship, and the US Navy against the Somali hijackers. The film opens with a lone ship traveling in open waters on a delivery route near the Cape Horn off of Africa.  The Somali pirates speed towards the Alabama with the plan of overtaking the ship and it contents with the objective of bringing in millions for the warlords based Somali.  The $30k offered is a mere pittance.  Nothing will stop the pirates.

Muse, Barkhad Abdi, is brilliant as the lead hijacker who forcefully overtakes the ship and the captain.  In one poignant scene, Muse, looks into the eyes of Phillips, and says, "Look at me.  I am the captain now!"  The crew safely hidden, turns off the electricity and begins the process of trying to save the captain and the bridge crew.  Phillips is taken hostage on the lifeboat and herein begins the terrifying saga between the three Somali pirates and Captain Phillips.  At 145 miles off the Somali coast, the US Navy and the Navy Seals seek to overcome the pirates and take Phillips back to safety.

Captain Phillips is a bone chilling and edge of your seat film.  The courage of Phillips and the determination of Muse is hands down captivating.  Captain Phillips, aptly reminds everyone to never take on the US Navy.  The filming in the small lifeboat capsule captures the sweat, anger and fear between all the players. 

The story, the script and the acting is Oscar worthy so far in 2013.  Captain Phillips, indeed, could be the film of the year.   The audience is riveted and rooting for the Phillips from start to finish.  Yet, the acting of the Somali pirates also touches a chord.  The emotions are high and the crescendo of the film makes for a moving experience.  All and all, the movie is well told and portrays an American hero.   Must see in 2013.


Notes:  The director of the film kept Hanks and Abdi and other pirate actors from meeting until the scene on the bridge of the ship. Also, the line mentioned above was ad libbed by Abdi.  Hanks on The Today Show mentioned the closeness of the actors on the lifeboat was a gritty experience. Today, ships in the open ocean carrying cargo travel together and not alone.

 

Captain Phillips - Trailer




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