Fight to Survive


01 June 2018| No Comments on Adrift     by Sean Chavel



Some movies can be like a dozen before it, such as the survivalist in mother nature drama, and it can still be good enough to surrender to: gripping hang onto your life drama that’s full of gasps. Adrift is a familiar lost at sea picture, and I had nonetheless figured it might just have a hook or two new. The acting is certainly convincing, so maybe I’d get lost inside the emotional terrain of its heroine Tami (Shailene Woodley). While drifting from country to country on an odyssey, Tami meets a wonderfully pure sailor for life guy in Richard (Sam Claflin). They are hired to take a boat from there to San Diego, not an adventure either would miss out on. But a hurricane in the Pacific tips the boat downwards (the two of them fall vertical down the vessel in one harrowing shot that’s seen late). The morning after is a sun scorching hell that never subsides.

“Adrift” is the true story of one’s survival (it happened in 1983), and although the boat details are convincingly well-remembered, a lot of other elements like Tami’s past, and Richard’s past, and their other relationships, are to me half-written. The filmmaking is sometimes forbiddingly beautiful – you can’t say that there aren’t a number of ravishing shots – and yet it also is kind of clunky with its time slides from present to flashbacks, and vice versa. I was not really pulled along with a narrative force by this one, although I can say I gave it my best shot to sit through beginning to end.

120 Minutes. Rated PG-13.


Film Cousins: “The Perfect Storm” (2000); “Cast Away” (2000); “Open Water” (2003); “All is Lost” (2013).

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Sean Chavel

About The Author / Sean Chavel

Sean Chavel is a Hollywood based author and movie reviewer. He is the Executive Director of, a new website that has adapted the movie review site genre by introducing moodbased and movie experience based reviews.


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