The 33: Film Review – Men vs Mountain: Who wins?

Verdict: Expect the unexpected in this disaster movie.

"That’s the heart of the mountain, and she finally broke!" – Antonio Banderas 

The 33 is a film about the 2010 Chilean mining disaster, the miraculous survival of the 33 miners and their remarkable rescue. The film is a balanced mix of the political efforts of the Chilean government officials, the continued endurance of the miners and the perseverance of the family members in rescuing their loved ones. 


The film, with a run time of 128 minutes, is a touching portrayal of the real-life incident that took place in the San Jose copper and gold mine, which led to Mario Sepulveda (Antonio Banderas) and his team being trapped in a gold mine, facing a new problem each day. Maria Segovia (Juliette Binoche), one of the miners’ sisters, diligently and fiercely protested against the Chilean government, thereby accelerating the Minister of Mining, Laurence Golborne’s (Rodrigo Santoro) rescue mission.

Most of the characters are fluent in Spanish, which adds authenticity to the film. The prominent characters in the films are Alex Vega (Mario Casas), a dedicated family man, Don Lucho (Lou Diamond Phillips), a realist and an experienced miner, Andre Sougarette (Gabriel Byrne), the chief engineer with the scientific knowledge and capabilities to rescue the miners and Dario Segovia (Juan Pablo Raga), an alcoholic who lives on a bench. A streak of wry humor runs through the film, carried by characters like Yonni (Oscar Nunez) and Elvis (Jacob Vargas).

The three pillars of the film are Mario, an optimistic opportunist and natural leader who keeps the miners from killing themselves, for 69 days; Maria, a persistent fighter and constant motivator for the family members, and Laurence, an inexperienced minister of mines, but someone who genuinely cares and offers support to the 33 survivors.

Directed by Patricia Riggen, The 33 will touch your heart with the poignant and soul-stirring performances by the cast. The especially stimulating performance by Antonio Banderas is something to look forward to. The score of the film is well-composed by James Horner, and it perfectly underscored the emotion in almost every scene of the film.

Why You Should Watch This Movie:

The spectacular performance delivered by the star cast of the film rekindles hope and humanity in the viewer. The representation of the historic incident will keep you at the edge of your seat with anticipation. The 33 is definitely a good experience. 

– By Mrinal Masand

Release Date: 15 Jan 2016
Language: English
Director: Patricia Riggen
Genre: Biography, Drama
Cast & Crew: Antonio Banderas, Rodrigo Santoro, Juliette Binoche
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