Maria Belon, what happened to Daniel

Criminal files

It's a cross with these films that are "based on a true story". Often the real events are taken and changed until the similarities between fact and fiction are only coincidental. But it can also be done differently, as the Spanish film “The Impossible” shows. Screenwriter Sergio G. Sanchez and director Juan Antonio Bayona took a true fate, namely the story of the Spanish Belon family, and then told such a universal story about a family that was separated and found again after the 2004 tsunami in Thailand that it It doesn't matter how closely the filmmakers stuck to the facts. Like the Belon family, it was likely that many families who wanted to spend their Christmas vacation in paradise had a great time. Perhaps that is why the makers of the family did not miss a surname and changed the family's nationality.

Henry (Ewan Mc Gregor), Maria (Naomi Watts - yes, they don't look particularly Spanish, but Antonio Banderas, Javier Bardem and Penélope Cruz were busy at the moment) and their three sons Lucas (Tom Holland), Simon (Oaklee Pendergast) and Thomas (Samuel Joslin) fly to Thailand. The English family living in Japan wants to spend their Christmas vacation in a posh resort when the tsunami tidal wave destroys all vacation plans.

Maria and Lucas are washed up inland. She injured her leg and helpful locals took her to a hospital. There the doctor waits for the operation that could lead to an amputation of her leg, while Lucas tries to make herself useful.

Meanwhile, Henry is looking for his wife and third son with Simon and Thomas. Together with other vacationers who are also looking for their relatives, they set off.

This family reunification is narrated by Juan Antonio Bayona in two large blocks that emphasize the separation of the family. Because as long as we follow the fate of Maria and Lucas until shortly before the union with their husband and the other two sons (Okay, that doesn't really come as a surprise now), we don't know what happened to Henry, Simon and Thomas.

In the melodrama, Byjona, whose first feature film was the successful horror film "The Orphanage", which was overwhelmed with prizes and praise, plays over and over again, albeit rather annoyingly, with horror elements and the popular, but here completely superfluous and inappropriate "Nature strikes back" - Topos that always calls for an explanation, however banal.

Apart from that, it provides impressive images of the tsunami, the tidal wave that was buried beneath itself, the subsequent destruction, the will to survive and the willingness of the people to help. The fact that the locals only appear as accessories is due to the chosen story, which pays homage to the will to survive, family ties and humanism.

The Impossible (Lo imposible, USA / Spain 2012)

Director: Juan Antonio Bayona

Script: Sergio G. Sanchez (based on the story by Maria Belon)

with Naomi Watts, Ewan McGregor, Tom Holland, Samuel Joslin, Oaklee Pendeergast, Sönke Möhring, Geraldine Chaplin

Length: 114 minutes

FSK: from 12 years


English homepage for the film

German homepage for the film

Film time about "The Impossible"

Metacritic on "The Impossible"

Rotten Tomatoes on "The Impossible"

Wikipedia about "The Impossible" (German, English)


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