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K-19: The Widowmaker /

Rated: PG-13

Starring: Harrison Ford, Liam Neeson, Joss Ackland, J.J. Field, Lex Shrapnel 

Directed by: Kathryn Bigelow 

Produced by: Joni Sighvatsson, Christine Whitaker, Kathryn Bigelow, Moritz Borman, Edward S. Feldman 

Written by: Christopher Kyle, Louis Nowra, William Broyles, Jr., Chris Kyle 

Distributor: Paramount Pictures


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     I went to see this movie with my Grandpa. He thought I was asleep during some of it. He kept looking at me funny; I didnít know if I was supposed to look back or what. My dad says I look asleep when I'm at the movies, too. I guess Iím just a lounger at the theatre. J

    K19: The Widowmaker is a full-fledged adrenaline rush full of mystery, hope, and drama. It captures the true story in such a way that is indefinable. It uses classic shots mixed with new-age special effects to keep the time period realistic, yet technically advanced. It sent me through some sort of denial, as I think it will others; this movie creates tension leading you to pull for the Russians. Yet half-way through I remembered that I am an American, I caught myself pulling for the enemies. K19 captures you on so many levels, but does have unmistakable flaws. It is well worth seeing, but not a fabulous representation of a classic submarine film.

     This entertaining film is nothing short of heart-stopping. K19: The Widowmaker is about a Russian submarine commanded by Harrison Ford. When they first set off, everything is going absolutely fine, even though the first-timer sub men are acting somewhat apprehensive. But as they drift into the North Sea, problems hit. The reactor in the ship is crazily overheating, sometimes up to 900 degrees, leading nuclear radiation from their weapons on board to emit. The captain sends men in to cool the reactor down with their water supply, but the water only remotely works and every crew member to come out of the reactor is scalded from the heat and exposed to nuclear radiation. Will a miracle save them or will they have to ask for help from the opposing country, the US? This question is for you to find out upon seeing this epic war drama.

      Russians don't slip in and out of their accents! It's instinctive...they always consistently maintain them. Harrison Ford's wannnabe Russian accent was one of the little flaws in this intrepid adventure. He would use a kind of half-assed fake voice. At some points it even got to be bothersome! If these so-called Russians are speaking in English than why should they be using accents? With a submarine full of nothing but Russians why aren't they speaking their native and first language, Russian? I don't know. At times this made absolutely no difference to my enjoyment level, and at sometimes it was unbearable; the point is it added no effect whatsoever. Why did they try to make this less real than it already was?

      If you watch this movie with a bare eye you are not able to see the tremendous special effects. All of the scenes when there are aerial shots of the submarine in the ocean, the special effects are most realistically done. Iím not completely sure, but I think that they posed the submarine on a blue/green screen and completely painted the ocean (from another photo) in. If this is the case, and it looks like it is, judging by the enormous budget of 100 million (information from the-numbers.com), I would like to complement the crew for the wonderful effects have made.

     This movie was rated PG-13 for disturbing images. This criterion fits it straight on the head. In some ways the images were more brutal than Black Hawk Down. The film shows men from the Navy coming out of a 900 degree reactor burned a bruise, spitting up green slime. Iím not taking off points for this, because this helped keep the movie realistic. Iím just saying that if you have a bad stomach and donít want have men vomit straight into your face, donít see this movie.

     K19: The Widowmaker was a highly entertaining experience. It looked very true to the story, though I wouldnít know. Harrison Ford was great as the Captain; accepting his mediocre Russian accent was done to the best of his ability. Even though liking this film will vary simply by tastes, it is worth a try (just be aware of the occasional gore). Go to see the matinee showing of this film, you wonít be disappointed. For me, The Widowmaker was a definite score!

-Danny, Bucket Reviews


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