The Perfect Storm

"Weak"

The Perfect Storm Review


I do not like boats. I get seasick. I hate being on the water.

As it turns out, I'm starting to dislike movies about boats, too. They also make me seasick.

The Perfect Storm is a movie about a boat, the Andrea Gail, a swordfishing boat (or "swordboat" in that hip Gloucester, Mass. parlance) that sets out one fateful day, ending up smack dab in the worst storm that ever was.

Under the leadership of washed-up fisherman Billy Tyne (George Clooney), a gaggle of seamen aim to pull the motherlode out of the sea, despite the fact that the season is ending and that everyone on dry land warns them of impending bad weather. Never mind, these guys pour into the boat and head for deep water, with the likes of young Bobby Shatford (Mark Wahlberg), who must leave behind his girlfriend Christina (a haggard Diane Lane). Oddly, almost everyone in the film seems to be a divorced parent "just trying to get by."

As it turns out, the stupidest fishermen in the world live in Gloucester, Mass. (or at least that's how the movie portrays them), and when storms collide with the jet stream (narrated in an ill-advised weatherman subplot by Christopher McDonald) things get ugly. Trouble heats up when the ice machine breaks, and Billy and the boys have to decide what to do with their unexpectedly huge catch of fish, destined to make them all rich: Wait out the storm and let the catch spoil, or drive through a hurricane to get the cash.

I don't need to tell you they go for it. And when it rains, boy does it pour, with the chowderheads steaming up 100-foot waves and combating all manner of trouble to get back to port, all the while with Linda Greenlaw (Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio) raving at them to turn around like a shrieking sea hag and the single moms waiting it out at home. But greed is powerful, and they pay no heed to Linda. In the end, these are not heroes, they are men to be pitied. (Note that I intend no disrespect to these men, but the families who sold their rights allowing their portrayal as buffoons deserve to be ashamed. As a footnote, they've filed a lawsuit against the filmmakers.)

Other subplots like a capsized sailboat and an aborted Coast Guard rescue manage to fill up well over two hours of butt-numbing run time. For some reason, director Wolfgang Petersen to fill space with melodramatic exposition -- the guys don't even hit the water until 40 minutes have gone by.

After hours of listening to Hollywood's version of the Boston accent and bearing witness to Man vs. Nature played out to its terminus, you'll finally grow tired of what I must admit are some dazzling special effects. Twister looks like a sissy next to these waves. For good or for bad, they are truly nauseating -- just like being on the boat.

But effects don't get you very far if the story isn't there, and with The Perfect Storm, it ain't. Ultimately, this is a Very Special Hallmark production with big production values. Barely.

Maybe the funniest thing is a little plea in the press notes to this film begging us critics not to reveal the ending of the film. I won't tell you how it ends... I'm just glad it ended at all. Why do movies like this always take themselves so seriously?

Sheesh, a little rain never hurt anyone.

Gone fishin'.



The Perfect Storm

Facts and Figures

Run time: 130 mins

In Theaters: Friday 30th June 2000

Box Office Worldwide: $325.8M

Budget: $120M

Production compaines: Warner Bros., Baltimore Spring Creek Productions, Radiant Productions

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

IMDB: 6.4 / 10

Cast & Crew

Starring: as Capt. Billy Tyne, as Bobby Shatford, as Christina " Chris " Cotter, John C. Reilly as Dale " Murp " Murphy, as David " Sully " Sullivan, as Alexander McAnally III, as Melissa Brown, as Alfred Pierre, as Linda Greenlaw, as Mike 'Bugsy' Moran, as Edie Bailey, as Todd Gross, as Bob Brown, as Irene 'Big Red' Johnson, Janet Wright as Ethel Shatford, as Sgt. Jeremy Mitchell, as Capt. Darryl Ennis, Todd Kimsey as Lt. Rob Pettit, Chris Palermo as Flight Engineer Borgers, Wiley M. Pickett as Sgt. Millard Jones, Hayden Tank as Dale Murphy, Jr., as Debra Murphy, Jennifer Sommerfeld as Alfred Pierre's Girlfriend, as Douglas Kosco, Sandy Ward as Quentin - The Old Timer, Melissa Samuels as Pam - Todd Gross' Assistant, Steven Barr as Commander Brudnicki

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Colossal Movie Review

Colossal Movie Review

It's rare to find a movie that so defiantly refuses to be put into a...

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

It's unlikely that Guy Ritchie could make a boring movie if he wanted to. This...

Snatched Movie Review

Snatched Movie Review

It doesn't really matter that the script for this lively action-comedy is paper thin: teaming...

Jawbone Movie Review

Jawbone Movie Review

Boxing movies aren't usually this thoughtful. Sure, there are plenty of punchy moments in the...

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Scottish filmmaker Gillies MacKinnon (Hideous Kinky) remakes the 1949 Ealing comedy classic, although it's difficult...

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Master filmmaker Ridley Scott is back to continue the story 10 years after the events...

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

A fictionalised account of real events, this drama is reminiscent of Peter Morgan's work in...

Advertisement
Sleepless Movie Review

Sleepless Movie Review

In remaking the 2011 French thriller Sleepless Night, the filmmakers have dumbed down both the...

Unlocked Movie Review

Unlocked Movie Review

By injecting a steady sense of fun, this slick but mindless action thriller both holds...

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

A seriously impressive feature directing debut with a star-making central performance, this period British drama...

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

It was never going to be easy to match the impact of 2014's Guardians of...

The Promise Movie Review

The Promise Movie Review

The director of Hotel Rwanda, Terry George, turns to another humanitarian horror: the systematic murder...

Their Finest Movie Review

Their Finest Movie Review

Skilfully written, directed and acted, this offbeat British period film tells a story that catches...

Unforgettable Movie Review

Unforgettable Movie Review

With heavy echoes of trashy thrillers like Fatal Attraction, this movie overcomes its painfully simplistic...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.