Captain Phillips : Movie Review

Director Paul Greengrass' hand-held, you-are-there sensibilities have served him well in past films of both the true-story (2006's "United 93") and fictional (2004's "The Bourne Supremacy" and 2007's "The Bourne Ultimatum") variety, and he continues in this docudrama vein with the occasionally arresting, no-frills "Captain Phillips." Adapted by Billy Ray (2012's "The Hunger Games") from the book, "A Captain's Duty: Somali Pirates, Navy SEALS, and Dangerous Days at Sea," by Richard Phillips and Stephan Talty, the film is methodic in its depiction of a real-life hostage situation perpetrated by Somali pirates in April 2009. Greengrass approaches his subjects with an unbiased eye; instead of telling his viewers what to think, he lets them decide for themselves based on the facts of what occurred. His cinematic handling is certainly intense at times, but there is also a repetitiveness to the overlong second half and an increasingly bothersome tendency to shoot so closely to his actors that the outcome goes from mere claustrophobia to, occasionally, visual incoherence.

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Author : Dustin Putman