I am using this review to talk about the movie only. I can’t comment on the historical accuracy of the film. Or on the politics involved. I can only evaluate the movie as I saw it
DIRECTOR: Gideon Raff
STARRING: Chris Evans, Alessandro Nivola, Ben Kingsley
SCREENPLAY: Gideon Raff
GENRE: Drama, History
RUNTIME: 129 Minutes
★★★ 3.5 Stars
I know there was a lot of chatter when this film came out about the historical and political accuracy of the story. Complaints the story had been whitewashed or painted it’s main characters as White Saviours. I am not in a position to comment on any of these things and tried my hardest to keep these things from impacted what I thought of the film in general. Which on the whole, wasn’t bad.
Based on true events, the film tells the story of a group of Israeli agents who set up a fake tourist resort in Sudan in the seventies in order to help Ethiopian Jews escape persecution and escape to Jerusalem.
This story is a white knuckle, tension filled ride right from the start and it doesn’t let up for a second the entire time. Right up until it’s nail biting final scenes you are on tender hooks. And accurate or not, it makes for a great movie watching experience. Despite this though there are quite a few good humorous moments to help break up the tension, or it would have been a really tough two hours viewing.
Outside of Chris Evan’s protagonist Ari, who is given a vast majority of the dialogue and screen time, there wasn’t a great amount of focus given to characters. None of the others are really given that much attention other then maybe Alessandro Nivola’s Sammy, but then only to be a opposing force to Chris Evans character. The rest are all very much background characters. It would have been good to see them as fully realised people rather than just filler as a lot of them had potential to be really interesting.
And one last, kind of annoying criticism. It is no secret that Chris Evans is a very attractive man. He has muscles in all the right places. But did they really need to show them off as much as they did in this film? Is it a contractual obligation?? Unnecessary push-ups and pull ups and that one 20 second scene where he is completely naked for no reason? I could stare at him all the live long day, but in this film, which is trying to be impactful and important, it wasn’t needed. At all.
Red Sea Diving Resort is Available on UK Netflix now