Captain Phillips is the true story of a cargo ship that is hijacked by a group of Somali pirates. Tom Hanks portrays Captain Richard Phillips, who was taken hostage during the ordeal.
If you followed the story from 2009, you know the ending. If not, don’t worry, I won’t spoil it for you here. Suffice it to say that the tension of the film is well designed and will keep you compelled throughout no matter whether you know the story or not. I followed the story briefly when it broke and new where it was going but was drawn in the whole time nonetheless…
The story is well written and expertly executed both from the directing stand point as well as the acting. The resources for this film were huge with the use of naval ships and authentic locations serving well to provide a rich backdrop. The use of the shaky cam technique gets a little over-used at times, but otherwise the director did a great job creating a tension that’s consistent without being over-bearing.
The acting is excellent. Hanks is in prime form and just makes you feel emotionally drained by the end but with this sense of sad relief that somehow breaks in you during the process of watching his experience through the film. Barkhad Abdi as the lead pirate is intense as are the rest of the actors portraying the pirates. Catherine Keener plays the wife of the captain but is only in the film for a short time.
The film is really well done, I would try to catch it in the theater if you can, it’s great on the big screen.
reviewed by Sean McKnight