Monday, February 04, 2013


Kate picked me up for easy breezy movie night at the Daly City theater.
"Let's go see 'The Impossible'! I said, because the previews presented Ewan McGregor as the star of a feel good true story of 2004 Tsunami Survival. Kate watched the previews and agreed. In perky moods, with popcorn and Diet Coke, we picked our seats in the theater.
"Are we going to cry?" Kate asked as the lights dimmed.
"Probably." I said, and settled in for what I thought would be a PG-13 tragic and touching tale of strength and the bonds of love.

'The Impossible' gets to the tsunami pretty quickly, which is horrible. And horrible. And horrible. People said the first 20 minutes of 'Zero Dark Thirty' was hard to watch, and I, who gets queasy at violence, found it not that bad. The first 30 minutes of 'The Impossible' is the basis for a class action lawsuit I am filing against Warner Bros.
On and on, with gaping open wounds and dead bodies, and then more wounds. Oh, the wounds. Big, huge, hanging wounds, which are then dragged along the debris. Pulling dried insides out of one's own throat while vomiting? That was during a mellow part of the movie, where I wasn't holding my purse up in front of the screen and hissing, "Dear God in heaven, please make this fucking stop."
Kate was crying out of sheer anxiety. I almost walked out three separate times, particularly when the director takes us underwater so we can see (repeatedly) how fucking agonizing it was to have been swirling around in the sharp debris. Which causes horrible wounds. Which you see. Over and over and over while people scream in their understandable pain.
There should be a support group for people who have seen this movie. We should be getting FEMA money. I am never going on a tropical vacation again. This movie feels like punishment for having boring problems.
So, just to recap, do not see 'The Impossible' unless you want to be the most stressed out you've ever been in your life for 1 hour and 54 minutes.

PS: I am 80% sure I was sitting next to Suze Orman...


Michael Strickland said...

God, I wish I had read this before seeing the painful movie a couple of months ago. If you do start a support group or figure out how to get money from FEMA for our shared PTSD, please sign me up. Even with the perfect Ewan MacGregor shirtless for half the movie, I still could hardly watch the whole movie. In fact, it was ONLY because he was shirtless for half the movie that I made it through the whole thing.

And the Suze Orman detail is perfectly bizarre. I'm sure it was her just because of the following maxim, "Always be polite to lesbians watching obscure, serious films in Daly City movie theatres. They always turn out to be Suze Orman."

Beth Spotswood said...

I'm so glad I'm not alone on this. My roommate posted this on Facebook and some of the comments were like, "What did she expect?" "This tragedy must be honestly portrayed!" etc.
But for some reason, The Impossible just went way too far into the realm of gruesome.