Movie review: Captain Phillips (2013)

‘Captain Phillips’ is a 2013 action thriller film based on a historical incident in which a merchant mariner, Captain Richard Phillips was taken hostage by Somali pirates in the Indian Ocean as part of the Maersk Alabama container ship hijacking in 2009, on which the pirates were led by Abduwali Muse. So, it’s a movie centred on a ship being hijacked and then a captain being taken hostage. I had only seen the movie’s trailer recently and I’m not that fancy of it. How could this be interesting?


But I was wrong. No wonder this film successfully generated universal acclaim and overwhelming positive feedbacks. It is even nominated for a number of awards including Best Picture and Best Actor on upcoming Golden Globes and Academy Awards. After watching the film just now, I’m really surprised that it performed so good that I’m speechless for a moment. I’m impressed that a story of a ship hijacked by pirates could be delivered to such a dramatic piece of film. And furthermore, it’s not a short film. It’s taking a bit over two hours and still perfectly engages the audiences to follow up with the story development as the tension builds.

I believe the true story of Captain Phillips would not be that dramatic as shown in the film. I guess some parts are added in or created fictionally to further exaggerate or dramatize the event, and I’m okay with it. If not, the event would have just been finished in a movie less than an hour. Accompanied with great direction, screenplay and cinematography, this film didn’t disappoint, and definitely delivered way beyond my expectation. But still it’s not perfect as I find it is taking a bit too long and some parts are a bit draggy.



930353 - Captain Phillips

Tom Hanks is incredible on his performance as the lead role here. I have not seen him on big screen for quite some time. As Captain Phillips, he yet contributed another superb acting. Truly wonderful. I do think he stands a high chance for Best Actor in several upcoming awards. The last scene when he was finally saved at the very crucial climatic moment, and then having a break down when he was brought over to medical check, is showcasing another best of Tom Hanks’ performance, full of heartfelt emotions. Also credit to the much lesser known actor, Barkhad Abdi for portraying the pirate leader so well that in the end, both of them put up for a great show.

Generally, ‘Captain Phillips’ is an interesting, thrilling, exhausting, incredibly intense and powerfully acted film. If you are looking for light or pure fun from a movie, then this is not for you. ‘Captain Phillips’ is for ‘serious business’…I mean it’s for satisfaction of professional critics and awards’ judges. It do gets a huge thumbs up from me too. Out of 10 points, I rate this film a total of 8.1. Such a high rating from me, which proves that it is one of the best films released last year according to my opinions.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)


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