We'll hear more from this one when it premieres at the New York Film Festival later this month, but it's already been screened for critics, and the consensus seems to be that this is another surefire Oscar contender in multiple categories (what a year this is turning out to be, huh?) This is an intense docudrama that re-tells the story of the pirate kidnapping of an American cargo ship in 2009. Because it's Paul Greengrass of course, the action is first rate and suspenseful from start to finish, but there's also been strong praise for the acting from Tom Hanks (likely to get his first Oscar nom in 13 years, and sixth overall) and first timer Barkhad Abdi as the Somali pirate leader. From the sound of it, it will probably contend in all the major categories, but more reviews will come in later this month to confirm or deny the strong early word.
"The film rips right along and never relinquishes its grip. The format of the last minute heroics goes back to the earliest Westerns and could well be accused of patness or being cliched- other than for the fact that it's what happened. Craftsmanship and technical contributions are first rate all the way." (Hollywood Reporter)
"At every step Hanks excels at showing what's really going on in the character's mind while maintaining his facade of almost folksy calm. It isn't one of the actor's rangiest roles, but it culminates in an eruption of emotional fireworks." (Variety)
"'Captain Phillips' will no doubt draw comparisons to 'Zero Dark Thirty' for its ripped-from-the-headlines storytelling, but this is a case in which the writer and director are as interested in the human element as they are in the true events they're recounting." (The Wrap)