The 33 has been showing in theaters through-out South America for months to much fan acclaim. The film premieres in the United States on November 13 and in the United Kingdom in January, 2016.

On Monday, November 9, The 33 will screen at the American Film Institute Fest as a Centerpiece Gala.

We have been waiting a long time to see Gabriel Byrne take on the role of master engineer André Sougarret, haven’t we? Here are some teasers to tide us over until the film comes out.

film clip

Here we have Gabriel Byrne, as André Sougarret, explaining the exact nature of the mining disaster and how the trapped men may be rescued.

 gb-the33-clip-screencap-01Screencap of Gabriel Byrne as André Sougarret in The 33


In this brief interview excerpt, Mr. Byrne notes what attracted him to this film and why he thinks the film is important.

featurette/behind the scenes

uk release and trailer

The 33 will be seen in theaters in the United Kingdom beginning January 29, 2016. Here is the official UK trailer.


I regret to report that I have not found a “glowing” review of this film so far–except from fans and audience members! Critics argue about actors over-playing or under-playing, the story not being detailed enough, the sentiments expressed in the film either being overwrought or too shallow. Some complain about the use of the English language for this Chilean experience and others decry the appearance of well-known actors in lead roles. Critics are unhappy. Surprised?

The fans and those who have seen the film are another matter. Almost all of the tweets and comments I have read are enthusiastic, excited, and complimentary of the film, the actors, the story, the whole shebang.

So, we must wait and see what we think! In the meantime, here are two reviews from mainstream outlets to give you a taste of the critical reception so far.

Screen Daily/Wendy Ide

Accompanied by a score which goes big on South American flutes and guitars, photogenic peasants hold candles aloft. There are lots of man-hugs and macho tears. It’s as though Riggen directs from a checklist of proven emotive shots. However there is no question that this is an extraordinary tale of human fortitude and resilience: at least some of the tears that will be shed in the film will be honestly earned.

Variety/Scott Tobias

While having the international cast speak English is an unfortunate concession to commercial reality, the performances do little to smooth over the problem. Binoche is one of the best actresses in the world, but not the ideal choice for the woman known for selling the best empanadas in Copiapo. Ditto Byrne, the pasty Irishman, who fakes his way through the role of a Chilean engineer by underplaying it the best he can. Banderas has the opposite problem as the exuberant “Super Mario,” sucking so much oxygen out of the room that it’s a wonder there’s any left in the Refuge for the other 32.

Yes, he actually called Mr. Byrne “the pasty Irishman.” Ugh. I would remind Mr. Tobias, if I felt like talking to him, that Chile is a diverse and multi-ethnic country, with over 50% of Chileans self-identifying as “white” in demographic studies of the country. From the looks of the trailers and clips, I think director Patricia Riggen has captured that diversity.

It will be interesting to see more reviews once the film has opened in the United States and the United Kingdom. Until then, stay tuned here for more news as it happens!

gb-the33-clip-screencap-02I refuse to say anything snarky about these reviews. There are lives to be saved, people!


  1. Oh Stella, you know how to make a person laugh!

  2. Just saw a TV spot for this film, opening here on November 13. Includes a great shot of Mr. Byrne ! Exciting.

    Angelle from Canada

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