Today is January 29 and we are almost done with the junk movies studios dump on us for the first month of the year… almost. Disney’s “The Finest Hours” may be based on a true story of a historic rescue that took place at sea in the 1950s, but to actually go see this movie will be a complete waste of your time and money.
In February 1952 a massive storm splits the SS Pendleton in two. The bow sinks, but the stern remains afloat where over 30 men still remain. However, their chances of survival are slim. Bernie Webber (Chris Pine) of the Coast Guard must lead a daring rescue on what many were calling a suicide mission.
There are so many elements wrong with “The Finest Hours” it’s hard to know where to begin, so let’s start with the character development. There is none. When a screenwriter submits a screenplay to a studio, one of the most common reasons why their script gets rejected is because a lack of character development. How the heck did no reader at Disney realize this script was sorely missing this aspect? Basically the way this movie is set up is that situations happen and there are characters who have to deal with them without the chance to get to know them first or care about them later. Plus, there is a romance thrown in between Chris Pine’s character and one played by Holliday Grainger and the two have zero chemistry on screen. It appears that besides not having anyone read through the script, they did not conduct screen tests either.
There’s one commercial for “The Finest Hours” airing on television right now where some critic wrote how this was an “edge of your seat” kind of movie, but the print of who actually said it is too small to read. There are scenes of action here, but don’t expect to be on the edge of your seat when it occurs even though the music on screen is desperately trying to tell you otherwise. Director Craig Gillespie has worked in a number of genres, he’s done some comedy, horror, mild drama, but nothing on the scale of this and he was unable to deliver.
Since this was a Disney movie it was likely mandated that it had to be converted into 3D to help bring in extra money. Unfortunately, most of the movies that were shot in 2D and converted into 3D by Disney is done piss poorly and “The Finest Hours” is no exception. Do you know one way you can tell you are watching a bad converted 3D movie? Take off your 3D glasses and you’ll notice that you can see the characters on screen clearly. If you absolutely must see this movie, at least save yourself some money and see it in 2D.
While it is true that the story on which “The Finest Hours” is based on a great moment in our naval history, the movie does it a disservice. It was no accident this was released in January. Disney clearly knew what they had on their hands. The good news is no more January junk movies for a whole other year. It is rated PG-13 for intense sequences of peril.