Unbroken

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Sky Movies Premiere: PREMIERE Friday 9 October, 3.45pm and 8pm

Starred Up’s ’71 squaddie Jack O’Connell as Louis Zamperini, an Olympic grade Italian-American athlete and WWII bombadier lost in the Pacific on a rescue mssion. With flight crew compadres Domhnall Gleeson and Garrett Hedlund, O’Connell’s Zamperini somehow survived 47 days in a flimsy rubber liferafts being nudged by sharks. Gleeson brings up Eddie Rickenbacker’s story.

He’d read about it in Life, how airman Eddie stayed afloat in the Pacific for 23 days. Gleeson believes there is a grand plan: “You live your life the best way you can, trying to have some fun along that way. And then one day it’s over.” O’Connell says he’ll dedicate his life to God if he survives. Specks in the ocean unseen by search planes. But a Zero has their number and they’re picked up by a Japanese boat.

English-speaking corporal Takamasa Ishihara greets them at the detention camp on the mainland: “You are enemies of Japan. You will be treated accordingly.” Expect some cruel and unusual punishment. Angelina Jolie demonstrated a willingness in her 2011 directorial debut In the Land of Blood and Honey to confront harsh subjects (in that instance, Bosnian War crimes). For all its surface sadism, Unbroken is softer (it warranted only a PG-13 rating in the US).

“If you can take it, you can make it,” O’Connell’s big brother tells him when training for the track team. “A moment of pain is worth a lifetime of glory. Remember that.” None of us is likely to forget. Because this conventional, occasionally stolid picture is a bit of an endurance test (fair enough in the circumstances). With echoes of Empire of the Sun and The Railway Man (less stylish than the former, less affecting than the latter), it’s still a powerful story of survival with exceptional performances. The biggest surprise is that the Coen brothers worked on the screenplay. The song that plays over the end credits, though – Coldplay’s Miracles – is a sentimental misjudgement.

Certificate: 15

Duration: 138min

IMDB – Unbroken

TMDB – Unbroken

Rotten Tomatoes – Unbroken

Other Showings Time & Date
Sky Movies Premiere Saturday, 10 October at 3:15PM
Sky Movies Premiere Saturday, 10 October at 8:00PM
Sky Movies Premiere Sunday, 11 October at 3:15PM
Sky Movies Premiere Sunday, 11 October at 8:00PM
Sky Movies Premiere Monday, 12 October at 3:45PM
Sky Movies Premiere Monday, 12 October at 10:00PM
Sky Movies Premiere Tuesday, 13 October at 3:45PM
Sky Movies Premiere Tuesday, 13 October at 8:00PM
Sky Movies Premiere Wednesday, 14 October at 3:45PM
Sky Movies Premiere Wednesday, 14 October at 10:00PM
Sky Movies Premiere Thursday, 15 October at 3:45PM
Sky Movies Premiere Thursday, 15 October at 8:00PM