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Naomi Watts / THE IMPOSSIBLE Poster: Tsunami 2004 Movie

Tsunami 2004 movie The Impossible poster Naomi Watts
Tsunami 2004 movie The Impossible poster: Naomi Watts

Tsunami 2004 movie The Impossible poster with Naomi Watts. J.A. Bayona, the director of the horror thriller The Orphanage, offers a different sort of horrific experiences in The Impossible, a movie about the 2004 tsunami that killed approximately 230,000 people in the coastal areas surrounding the Indian Ocean. Academy Award nominee Naomi Watts (21 Grams) and Ewan McGregor (recently seen in Salmon Fishing in Yemen) star.

Tsunami 2004 movies: too soon?

Four years ago, another tsunami 2004 movie, Fabrice Du Welz’s Vinyan, was screened out of competition at the Venice Film Festival. Starring Emmanuelle Béart and Rufus Sewell as an European couple in search of their — possibly still alive — son, Vinyan stirred quite a bit of controversy because the psychological / supernatural thriller was deemed exploitative as tsunami memories were still fresh.

The Impossible opens in Spain on Oct. 11. So, maybe eight years is a long enough gap for a movie to be made about a horrific tragedy? Paul GreengrassUnited 93, released five years after the terrorist attacks in New York City and Washington, bombed at the box office. (Clint Eastwood’s Hereafter, which flopped in North America but performed relatively well abroad, doesn’t really count, as the tsunami 2004 wasn’t at the film’s core.)

Perhaps we need more distance, say, 84 years — as was the case with James Cameron’s Titanic — to turn horrific tragedies into blockbuster-caliber entertainment for the masses.

The Impossible cast

Written by Sergio García Sánchez, The Impossible follows a white, English-speaking family who find themselves at a resort ravaged by the 2004 tsunami. In addition to Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor, The Impossible cast features Marta Etura, Tom Holland, Dominic Power, and veteran Geraldine Chaplin.

As per the IMDb, The Impossible opens in Brazil, Argentina, Belgium, and The Netherlands later this year, and in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Denmark, and Norway in January 2013. Summit Entertainment (now annexed to Lionsgate) is the film’s North American distributor, but there’s no scheduled release date as yet.

Tsunami 2004 movie The Impossible / Lo Imposible poster: J.A. Bayona’s Twitter page.

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