Combustible Celluloid Review - Thirteen Lives (2022), William Nicholson, based on a story by Don Macpherson. William Nicholson, Directed by Ron Howard, Viggo Mortensen, Colin Farrell, Joel Edgerton, Tom Bateman, Sukollawat Kanarot, Thiraphat Sajakul, Sahajak Boonthanakit, Vithaya Pansringarm, Teeradon Supapunpinyo, Nophand Boonyai, Paul Gleeson, Lewis Fitz-Gerald, U Gambira, Josh Helman
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With: Viggo Mortensen, Colin Farrell, Joel Edgerton, Tom Bateman, Sukollawat Kanarot, Thiraphat Sajakul, Sahajak Boonthanakit, Vithaya Pansringarm, Teeradon Supapunpinyo, Nophand Boonyai, Paul Gleeson, Lewis Fitz-Gerald, U Gambira, Josh Helman
Written by: William Nicholson, based on a story by Don Macpherson. William Nicholson
Directed by: Directed by Ron Howard
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for some strong language and unsettling images
Running Time: 147
Date: 07/29/2022
IMDB

Thirteen Lives (2022)

3 1/2 Stars (out of 4)

Cave Danger

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Ron Howard directed this feature, telling the tale of the 2018 rescue of 12 kids and their soccer coach from the flooded Tham Luang cave in Thailand. It had already been told in the excellent National Geographic documentary The Rescue (2021), but it's a great story and it gets the pulse pounding again in Thirteen Lives. Viggo Mortensen and Colin Farrell — both with impeccable English accents — star as Rick Stanton and John Volanthen, the experienced cave divers who found the kids, while Joel Edgerton is Harry Harris, whose specialty in anesthesia eventually saved the day. The movie sometimes resorts to little screenwriter's tricks (such as a character dropping his hypodermic needle in the water just as a fresh injection is required) to up the drama, and it's sprawled with so many characters that we never really get to know anyone well. But Howard pulled off this kind of tense rescue mission story before, with Apollo 13 (1995), and his thorough craftsmanship comes through again. Even at nearly 2-1/2 hours, Thirteen Lives moves at a swift clip and stirs the soul.

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