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A thrilling yet poignant true story, The Finest Hours is a thrilling and very heartfelt adventure film with a cast that elevates the material. While its one thing to just tell a true story, the film takes a genuine and earnest look at the characters, who prove to be the highlight of the entire story. On top of that, the excellent visual effects and steady direction make for a thrilling spectacle that feels natural and exciting.

A true story, the film follows the story of Bernie Webber (Chris Pine), a coast guard officer assigned to rescue a damaged oil freighter with his team of men. Pine is great here, and plays against character with a more timid and introverted role. Among the supporting highlights are Brn Foster and Casey Affleck, both giving hefty dramatic performances that are developed continuously throughout the run time.

The film takes a while to get going, but the exposition establishes an emotional undercurrent that supports the rest of the film. It’s a great adventure, and once it starts the film works very well as a dramatic medium. As a true story spotlight, it sheds light on a story, and as an adventure it’s one of the most engaging in recent memory. Grade: B+