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‘The Rescue’ – Review

‘The Rescue’ – Review


The 2018 Tham Luang cave rescue is a story of pure heroism under fire and the ultimate test of humanity’s resolve to identify and solve a unique problem in the most challenging of circumstances.

Now in The Rescue, Academy Award-winning documentary filmmakers Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin takes audiences inside the adrenaline-charged mission to rescue thirteen trapped Thai athletes and their coach in what can be regarded as one of the most awe-inspiring feats of human heroism ever attempted.

The Rescue chronicles the enthralling, against-all-odds story that transfixed the world in 2018: the daring rescue of twelve boys and their coach from deep inside a flooded cave in Northern Thailand. The Rescue brings alive one of the most perilous and extraordinary rescues in modern times, shining a light on the high-risk world of cave diving, the astounding courage and compassion of the rescuers, and the shared humanity of the international community that united to save the boys.

Taking you moment by moment into the adrenaline-charged mission to save thirteen lives from the most hazardous of disasters, The Rescue is far and away one of the best documentaries I can claim to have ever seen. Filmmakers Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin takes audiences right into the heart of this incredible rescue mission in The Rescue, and make no mistake it’s a nerve-racking watch. Using a mixture of in-person interviews, footage from multiple dives and digital graphics that showcase just how dangerous this mission was, Vasarhelyi and Chin place audiences directly within the mission. And your heart will be pounding from beginning to end.

As filmmakers, Vasarhelyi and Chin have made a career out of putting their audience right into the thick of the action and in The Rescue they make the case for just how daring, audacious and dangerous this rescue operation was. Taking audiences inside the mysterious and dangerous world of cave driving results in a complete and utter rush and it’s unbelievable to see how these cave drivers work in the most unforgiving of environments.

The Rescue centres on a group of intrepid cave divers all brought in from around the world. Best described as a mix of daredevil, misfits who have found sanctuary and freedom in venturing into the depths of our world, you can’t but come away feeling a deep level of respect for these amazing group of men. The assembled team who are led by Richard Stanton and John Volanthen and consist of divers including Jason Mallinson, Chris Jewell, Craig Challen and Richard Harris, who also happens to be a physician specializing in anesthesia, are a group of the most amazing individuals you could hope to meet and their story is incredibly inspiring to listen to as they attempt the impossible.

Vasarhelyi and Chin don’t let the tension of The Rescue ease up for a second and with a commentary from Stanton, Volanthen and Harris navigating the operation you begin to understand how risky and dangerous this operation was. And how at any moment failure could be upon them. The mission to achieve success is incredibly daunting, but this is a tale that fully invests you in the power and capability of humanity at its finest.

The Rescue is a rush from beginning to end, and audiences will be pulled into the danger and strength of its powerful narrative. Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin honour the spirit and abilities of an amazing group of rescuers and you’ll come away from watching this film with a renewed sense of hope and triumph in the power of humanity and what it can accomplish.

Image: MadMan Films