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The Finest Hours
BLU-RAY disk
06.28.2016 By: Sean Wist
The Finest Hours order download
Director:
Craig Gillespie

Actors:
Chris Pine
Casey Affleck
Ben Foster

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Based on the true story of the greatest small boat rescue in coast guard history, The Finest Hours follows four coast guards in 1952 who set off to rescue the survivors of an oil tanker that's been torn in two.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
Everything wrong with The Finest Hours is summed up in the prologue of the film. We watch Bernie Webber (Chris Pine) and his friend as they head out to a small diner to engage in a blind double-date. The two joke beforehand about waits before them, but the tone is all off. Dark and dreary, I half-expected some Boston mobster to just walk in and start shooting up the place. Unfortunately, nothing this engaging happens, and instead we're introduced to Webber's love interest in an attempt to anchor one of our heroes to some emotional cornerstone. The problem is, we don't care, and it just wastes our time.

After this unnecessary intro that goes on for far too long, we're finally introduced to the crew on the tanker, as well as Casey Affleck's Ray Sybert, who brings this film a much needed sense of genuinity. Sybert has engineering finesse, but the rest of the crew doesn't necessarily agree with his ideas or even like him, making his efforts much more interesting when shit goes south. He's not only the reluctant hero, but there's few on the tanker that even want him to be. The fact that he's not a family man brings into question his character and his will to survive according to the rest of the crew. It's at this point we realize that the movie spends too much time with the wrong characters.

The film bounces back and forth between the two stories as coast guard Webber is sent out to rescue the sailors, given orders by Eric Banner who sports a horrendous accent. At best, this film is an entertaining romp at sea as we watch Webber contend with finding the survivors, and Sybert try to keep alive the men who have little faith in him. At worst, we go back to Webber's love interest as the script tries its best to give her something to do for absolutely no reason. The endgame of the film is no surprise, even if you don't know the story on which it's based, and is lacking the emotional punch needed to make it all worthwhile. For such a heroic story, it's lacking heart. The Finest Hours feels like it was churned out by a studio, rather than painstakingly created by filmmakers.
THE EXTRAS
Given the lackluster film, I'm sure we're all dying to jump into the special features! There's not much to experience here, but let's go over what comes with this Blu-ray.

Against All Odds: The Bernie Webber Story (14:10): This featurette takes a look at the town of Chatham and its inhabitants to get some first-hand accounts of those involved with the actual story. Given that the entire story is summarized here, you'd probably be better off just watching this and skipping the film entirely! It'd certainly save you some time!

Deleted Scenes (4:27): Two deleted scenes make up this section. One focuses on the large tear in the tanker and the crew's attempt to cover it, while the second has Ben Foster's character explain the entire prologue to the other coast guards. They certainly don't add much to the film, although the movie probably would've benefited by excising a lot of the "love story" and then keeping the latter scene in to give some back story. So it goes.

Brotherhood (1:49): This is a fluff piece, similar to what studios will release online before a film hits theaters. Essentially a trailer mixed in with interview segments from the cast and crew.

Two Crews (2:02): This video is exactly like the previous one, except with the focus on Chris Pine and Casey Affleck's characters.

What Is Your Finest Hour? (1:45): This featurette is a little misleading, as it starts with the testimony of one Coast Guard and her account of saving a life, before transitioning into a trailer for the film. Aside from being to stories about coast guards, what the two have in common is anyone's guess.

The Finest Inspiration: The U.S. coast guard (1:42): Oddly enough, this extra is a continuation of the previous one, with some trailer footage mixed in with real life Coast Guard footage of a few minor testimonials. Nothing to write home about.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
If you've seen the trailer for The Finest Hours, then you know exactly what to expect from this movie. It goes through the motions of a heroic tale, but amounts to a rather hollow experience. Most of the special features are comprised of extended trailers, so it's very much a "one and done" run. If you're really curious about this flick, this Blu-ray is a rental, at best.
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3:44AM on 06/28/2016
I think the downfall of The Finest Hours is that it's made by Disney so it feels very safe and family friendly. Had it been made other studios, they might push the envelope a little bit more.
I think the downfall of The Finest Hours is that it's made by Disney so it feels very safe and family friendly. Had it been made other studios, they might push the envelope a little bit more.
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