434. All is Lost

Background info

434-all-is-lostTitle: All is Lost
Director: J. C. Chandor
Year: 2013
Run time: 1hr 46m

“Academy Award winner Robert Redford stars in All Is Lost, an open-water thriller about one man’s battle for survival against the elemts after his sailboat is destroyed at sea. Written director by Academy Award nominee J.C. Chandor the film is a gripping, visceral and powerfully moving tribute to ingenuity and resilience.”

Live blog

4:21 – Ohhh, waking up to a hole in your boat must be the worst thing ever.
5:11 – He seems very calm about the situation though. I’d be flailing about.
15:19 – On the one hand, I can see why you’d got sailing – incredible peace and quiet. On the other hand, cold tinned food and wet pillows. Not so much.
18:14 – I bet sunsets are beautiful out at sea like that. Still not convinced though.
20:00 – It’s not an elegant fix on the side of his boat, but who knew you could seal up holes like that?
26:15 – Sailing seems like a two person job, the number of things he’s doing that are horrifically dangerous.
29:06 – This is quite literally battening down the hatches.
30:46 – Less a fan of the whooshing wind noise. That must get pretty noisy at sea.
39:46 – Love that the oven rotates so it’s always facing upwards. Genius stuff on these boats.
44:33 – Head injury, that’s just what you need on top of everything else.
47:13 – I love how life rafts and things just unfold. So awesome.
50:19 – Confused that he stayed attached to the boat. If it went down, wouldn’t it have dragged him down too?
54:18 – Him clambering about the sinking boat is freaking me out.
58:30 – How awful to watch it sink like that.
1:04:36 – If I was him, at this point I’d be yelling WHY DOES THE WEATHER HATE ME?
1:12:22 – Epic swearing!
1:19:58 – Ironic if he was to be rescued by a boat carrying shipping containers, which is effectively what sunk him.
1:30:45 – Did he bring that bottle for this reason? That’s thinking ahead!
1:35:34 – Those are some massive flames from a few bits of paper.
1:39:24 – That was someone else’s hand, I wonder if they’ll get a credit.
1:40:23 – No credit!

Conclusions

This was just a beautiful film. We wanted to watch it after first hearing about it and were both a bit disconcerted to find it had dropped off the iTunes charts by the time we got round to it. But diving in proved to be great choice.

Robert Redford single-handedly holds the screen for the full hour and forty, it’s like Cast Away but even more extreme. It’s so quiet and so intense, even the calm moments have you gripped in case something goes wrong.

There’s a lot left unsaid, plenty of questions about this guy, what he’s doing out there, what his non-sea-life is like, but none of it really matters. It’s all about his fight for survival, and it’s almost like you’re right there with him.

My only complaint was that at the end (spoiler alert!) it feels like he gives up too easily, when it would have taken whatever it was a little while to arrive. It’s bugging me, even though I know it was probably only done for film and timing purposes.

Otherwise, a fantastic and flawless piece of cinema.

Rating: 5/5

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