You remember, don’t you? The initial reports of the mine collapse in Chile made news around the world and, at first, it seemed certain it would be yet another mining tragedy. But this time, it was different. This time, working together and never giving up, an international team of experts devised a way to bring those buried men back to their families. All of them. Alive.
Fast forward a few years and the film about this miracle in the desert is on our screens! The process of making this movie was fun to watch–everyone involved with it wanted to share its progress on Twitter and Instagram. Once again, Gabriel Byrne chose to work on an international project with a woman director. Patricia Riggen, who began her career in Mexico, took the reins of the production and made it her own. She captures memorable scenes that bring the human element to the fore, while making the technical and action scenes as vivid as any big action film director. Her opening long shot into the mouth of the mine is breath-taking!
The finished product does justice to the story, to the men and women who endured such terrible physical and emotional trauma, and to the country that worked to make the miracle happen. An inspiring tale, yes–but also a cautionary one.
Gabriel Byrne plays the mastermind of the rescue, engineer André Sougarret, as though he had been an engineer all his life. He is that kind of actor; he can convince you he has mastered a particular field of study or complex and detailed information, playing a psychiatrist, a philosopher, or even a priest easily and believably. He does justice to this role and to the stark reality of it–not an easy job.
In addition to playing one of the heroes of the story, Gabriel also performs another function: narrative builder. The details of exactly what has occurred in this awful mishap, the technical specifics of the dangers the trapped men face, and the outline of possible solutions to this tense and possibly tragic situation are all presented to us by him, sometimes in measured tones, sometimes in near howls of frustration. It is striking to realize that most of what we understand about what is actually going on in this rescue operation is because the engineer is telling us, in often tense scenes with his co-star Rodrigo Santoro. That’s a big responsibility to bear and our favorite Irishman pulls it off with aplomb.
The Mega Movie Page for The 33 also builds a narrative, with behind the scenes videos and pics, productions stills, posters, video clips, reviews, screencaps from the film, and more. The 33 is an inspiring, beautifully shot, and powerfully acted film that reminds us of the indomitable nature of the human spirit, even when faced with the destructive force of an entire mountain. These days, we can all use a little inspiration. This movie delivers it! heart