In 2010, the oil spill across the southern coast of USA was a major environmental catastrophe. This film Deepwater Horizon (2016) by Director Peter Berg, whose earlier movie Hancock (2008) I had seen, documents on what happened on that fateful day aboard the oil rig DeepWater Horizon. I saw this film today, thanks to Amazon Prime Video, a service I am loving more every day.
The oil rig situated about 40 minutes by air from the coast of Louisiana is owned by a private firm Transocean, its manager is an oilman Mr.Jimmy aided by Mike, their Chief Electrical Technician. The rig is commissioned by global giant BP to drill a well for them. BP’s men unilaterally decide not to do a statutory test on the drilled deepwater well to save costs. Mr.Jimmy objects to proceed further and conducts a negative pressure test, which leads to the already weak well to blow out. Preventive mechanisms like blowout preventers fail too, causing a massive eruption and a huge fire spreads throughout the rig killing many men onboard.
The film captures the sequence of events with a focus on Mike and Andrea, the rig’s navigation officer. Though the film feels like a documentary in the first half, which couldn’t be helped as the Director has to familiarise the audience on what a hostile environment an offshore oil rig can be. It picks pace once the negative test starts to show strange results, our interest increases and it peaks in the climax, which sports a Hollywood style heroism you will expect.
Overall, I found Deepwater Horizon (2016) to be less of a cinema but still an interesting watch.