Tuesday, May 14, 2013

"The Impossible"

Last weekend my mom, Chandra and I watched a wonderful movie called The Impossible starring Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor. This movie shares the experience of the Belon-Alvarez family and the chaos that followed the massive tsunami that hit Southeast Asia on December 26, 2004. 
I don't know how they re-created the scene when the waves generated by the tsunami hit the shore, but it looked very realistic. It would've been absolutely terrifying to just be minding your own business when you look up and see a wall of water rushing towards you.
This is an excerpt from January 2013's issue of People Magazine about the Belon-Alvarez family:
On Dec. 26, 2004, Maria Belon was enjoying a Spanish novel, The Shadow of the Wind, poolside at a resort in Khao Lak, Thailand, while her three sons, Lucas, 10, Tomas, 8, and Simon, 5, splashed in the water. Belon, a doctor, and her husband, Enrique Alvarez, were on Christmas vacation; they had spent the previous day unwrapping presents, including a telescope and a ball from the hotel gift shop. But in minutes their lives changed forever. "Suddenly we heard a horrible sound, like the sound of thousands of big planes," Belon says of the guttural roar that froze her in her tracks. "Seconds later there was a black wall in front of us. I thought it was death. I couldn't imagine it was water. It was a monster. The most horrible monster you can imagine." 

Moments later the Belon-Alvarez family was swept apart by the torrential force of the Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004. The family was cast into a lethal current swirling with fallen trees, debris and bodies. When the churn spit her out, Belon was badly injured. "My family was all gone," she recalls. "It was, 'Oh my goodness, I'm alive but I am alone.' The most horrible thing I could ever think of was being alive without them." But as she clung to a palm tree, she spotted her oldest son floating nearby. "When I saw Lucas, I thought, 'Okay, I have an incredible reason to be alive,'" says Belon, who says she gained strength from the souls of all those who had been plunged into the surf with her. "We were in the water struggling, and Lucas was screaming, 'We're going to die!' I could feel something incredible, and I said, 'We need to be courageous, we need to take care of each other, but we will not die.' Lucas was 10 years old, but he was very brave."
Watching the tsunami and imagining what it would've been like to actually be there when it hit was really intense. I can't imagine the terror of being swept away by a wall of water that you couldn't escape from, and being torn away from my family not knowing if they were dead or alive or if I'd ever see them again. It was also intense watching the family search for each other in the movie.They kept passing each other like ships in the night, unbeknownst to each other. I was mentally biting my nails the entire movie!
The acting in this movie was SO good! The actors really did a fantastic job portraying the characters/emotion in a believable way, which is actually easier said than done. Sometimes I've watched movies that have definitely had the potential to be good, but were ultimately spoiled with acting that left something to be desired.
Here's a picture of the actors that portrayed the Belon-Alverez family, and a few pictures of the actual family at the movie premiere. I know including these pictures kind of spoils the suspense of the story since it's clear from the pictures that everyone survives/reunites, but I really I wanted to include pictures of the real-life family in my post.


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