Posted Jul 02 2018

Adrift - This Movie Roughly Rocks

Dir: Baltasar Kormakur

Starring Shailene Woodley, Sam Claflin

Shailene Woodley both produces and stars in this true life tale of Tami Oldham a woman who started to sail a yacht with her boyfriend Richard (Claflin) from Tahiti to California, and hit just about the worst storm ever. It’s clear from the movie and her performance that Woodley is not afraid to throw herself in head on, facing up to all manner of trials and tribulations as Oldham is cast adrift for over forty days and forty nights, rescuing her near-death BF from the water and fighting to keep them both alive as the chance of survival becomes more and more remote. She is by far the strongest element of the movie, and one that manages to keep you engaged for the majority of the film’s relatively swift running time.

Kormakur’s movie has a strong parallel structure – cutting between Tami and Richard’s meeting, hooking up and beginning their sail and their time adrift, managing to save the big storm (and subsequent big emotional punch) for the climax of the film, a protracted action sequence that Kormakur handles with suitable aplomb.

Early reviews made much of a third act twist that left some feeling betrayed, but, it’s not as out there or even unforetold if you’ve been following the movie closely. And this is a true story after all, so not that unexpected.

It’s not a major achievement or the most exciting seafaring adventure ever seen. But the unglamorous, straight ahead work of Woodley alone makes it worth a look.


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