Reviewed by: John Decker
|Featuring:||Tom Hanks … Captain Richard Phillips
Barkhad Abdi … Muse
Barkhad Abdirahman … Bilal
Faysal Ahmed … Najee
Mahat M. Ali … Elmi
Michael Chernus … Shane Murphy
Catherine Keener … Andrea Phillips
David Warshofsky … Mike Perry
Corey Johnson … Ken Quinn
Chris Mulkey … John Cronan
Yul Vazquez … Captain Frank Castellano
Max Martini … SEAL Commander
Omar Berdouni … Nemo
Mohamed Ali … Asad
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|Director:||Paul Greengrass—“The Bourne Ultimatum,” “The Bourne Supremacy,” “United 93”|
|Producer:||Michael De Luca Productions
Scott Rudin Productions
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|Distributor:||Columbia Pictures, Sony Pictures|
“Out here survival is everything.”
“Captain Phillips,” a drama based on true events in the life of Richard Phillips, is highly suspenseful for a mostly non-action film. Due to the meticulous camera work, spectacular acting, particularly by Tom Hanks and a couple of the lead pirates, and overall timing in the film, it is a thrilling portrayal of a recent historical event (2009), with some controversial facts changed or ignored by the producers. These piracy events aren’t so rare. The film also does a good job of showing the desperation held by individuals in the Somali community, all while not excusing their corruption. There is a warm down period at the end of this film which is very unique and worthy of any filmmaker’s attention. It is gripping and emotional, a fantastic example of what the media of film can accomplish through subtlety.
I thoroughly enjoyed this film. There isn’t too much to say about it without giving things away unnecessarily. I like that the trailers which I observed did not give away the whole story.
The amount of profanity in this film is very minimal—a few words spoken by Somali Pirates in haste. It is also not emphasized. There is no sexuality what-so-ever, inherent to the story.
The violence in “Captain Phillips” is also minimal, at least for what one might expect from such barbary. There are some pretty brutal but necessary violent acts at the very end which are 80-90% off camera. The lack of gratuitous nature of what is shown on camera of this violence is commendable. It is respectful to family audiences and is a good example of what can be done in films to portray explicit events without actually putting it on the screen.
Enjoy “Captain Phillips” with your friends, your family, your teenagers and perhaps even younger ones if you believe they can handle the tension. It’s a very well made, suspenseful film and an excellent drama.
Violence: Moderate / Profanity: Minor / Sex/Nudity: None
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.