I thought I made this clear three months ago when the first Deepwater Horizon teaser popped but let’s try again. I really, really don’t like cutaways to anxious, worried wifeys (Kate Hudson in this instance) and scared little daughters while brave daddy (Mark Wahlberg) and his resourceful buddies are grappling with a major catastrophe. Same deal with The Perfect Storm — cut to the girlfriend/wife waiting in a bar for the latest news and the movie stops cold. Deepsix the family stuff while there’s still time. (If Terrence Malick can erase characters and subplots in the editing room, why not Peter Berg?) Just start with Wahlberg and his buddies showing up for work on that fateful day and then just tell the story. How and why the BP shitstorm happened, what they were facing, who got killed and why, and how they finally capped the oil spill.
3.23.16 reaction to first Deepwater Horizon teaser: “I’m not sure about the strategy, but at least the editors have gone with an unusual approach. You know what this film will be (petroleum-soaked gutslam CG action, blue-collar heroes, bad British Petroleum execs) and that with Peter Berg at the helm…well, you know Berg’s tendencies and so did the Summit guys who decided to hire him in favor of original helmer J.C. Chandor. But let’s be positive. Intercutting between Mark Wahlberg‘s young daughter explaining a school science project (right?) and the pre-disaster activities upon BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil rig suggests that the film might be less than 100% predictable. If only Wahlberg was playing a typical half-attentive, half-spaced dad instead of smiling and beaming and soaking in every last wonderful word from his daughter’s mouth. (You know, as in “stop selling it, you fucking actor, and just be in the moment”?) You know what would’ve been even nicer? If they’d only shown the can of Coke exploding on the kitchen table and left the bigger eruption to our imagination.