Captain Phillips is a movie starring Tom Hanks, whose character is based on the true story of Captain Richard Phillips a merchant mariner who was captured by Somali Pirates in 2009. Captain Phillips is an intense and claustrophobic movie that will not only keep you on the edge of your seat, but it will expose you to the reality and some of the reasoning behind Somali Piracy. The movie itself does not justify piracy, but it gives our villains some background and helps you to understand that they are real people with problems, who are unfortunately looking for a violent means to get ahead in their society. Even the violent mannerism of the pirates can be explained by the use of KHAT, which is a plant with amphetamine like qualities that increases aggression. Watching this film, you will see two totally different worlds, from the lifestyles, belief systems and even down to the equipment. It shows how desperate people can become and what they are willing to endure to attempt to rise up.
Captain Phillips doesn’t waste much time leading up to the hijacking, as a matter of fact they moved so quickly, I thought they had editing problems at first because Tom Hanks talked so little and in such short segments with his wife to begin with, but then I realized, hey this is based on a real person, he might not be that talkative.
Speaking of Tom Hanks, he nailed this role! I have to say he is one of the best actors I know. He took on the role and just played it like an everyday hardworking guy, who was not heroic, special, or a super intellectual. He was just a guy doing his job and got caught in the wrong place at the wrong time, and he does everything he can to try and save his crew and get home. By the time Tom Hanks was done with this role, I had to blink a few times to keep the moisture at bay. The other person that put on a great performance was Barkhad Abdi, who played Muse the Somali Captain. Although he is the villain in this film, the way Abdi plays the character of Muse makes you feel some sympathy for the character and you can imagine that if his life wasn’t so hard, he would be a good hardworking citizen that would be an asset to the community.
Captain Phillips is a great film that will get your blood pressure moving and give you a lesson in geo-economic politics at the same time.