A woman (Shailene Woodley) finds herself in a disabled boat somewhere between Tahiti and California after a hurricane at sea, her fiancé (Sam Claflin) badly injured. Though an unskilled sailor, she knows she must find the strength and determination needed to survive.
The film, from Iceland’s Baltasar Kormakur, examines the limits of human endurance. It also examines the limits of Woodley’s acting. The actress, who started out with a bang in The Descendants and then had her own little Hunger Games rip-off in the Insurgent YA franchise, here redefines the term “perfunctory.”
Despite this being a true story of great hardship and adventure, frequent back-and-forth flashbacks and a hugely misjudged narrative device tend to bog it down in more than a few places.
Not true stories, but far better films on the same theme: All Is Lost and Open Water.