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This Review Reveals Minor Details About the Plot.

A True Story

Adrift (2018) on IMDb

Plot Overview

“Adrift” begins rather suddenly with a murky underwater shot that includes what looks like a body adrift—wearing a blinking red light to add to the terror. A gasping woman wakes up in a water-enveloped debris field. “Richie!” she calls out in desperation.

She is marooned on a swamped sailboat with a broken mast in the middle of the ocean. And that's the good news. The bad news is she finds Richie's life­line unclipped. He's the experienced sailor of their duo and he's nowhere to be seen. “Oh my … We're gonna die!”

We go back in time to Tahiti, 1983, where free spirited Tami Oldham (Shailene Woodley) connects up with adventure­some sailor Richard Sharp (Sam Claflin.) They hit if off big time (“I've never met any­one like you”) in scenes inter­spersed with the cur­rent ship­wreck foot­age. Richard's friends Peter (Jeffrey Thomas) and Christine (Elizabeth Hawthorne) offer to pay them to pilot their 45 foot sail­boat HAZAÑA back to San Diego for them. We follow this pleasur­able journey of theirs until they run afoul of Hurricane Raymond,

Going forward we find the news that's too good to be true: Richard had clasped on to the skiff and Tami retrieves him from the ocean. He has a compound fracture of his ankle and several broken ribs, so he'll not be helping any with the sailing, but with­out his company Tami might well have lost her mind. Together they hope to make distant land­fall in Hawaii sailing under the jib and navigating by dead reckoning.


star burst SOSTami had had a spiritual experience at a deep island water hole. (Psalm 107:23-24) “They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; These see the works of the LORD, and his wonders in the deep.” Now having tried but failed to out­sail the storm she and Richie find themselves stranded “in a 1500 square mile search area, not in any flight paths, and on no ship­ping lanes.” A big storm had come up, (Psalm 107:25-28) and “they cry unto the Lord in their trouble”: “Mayday. Mayday. Mayday. Can anyone hear me?” God stills the storm and rescues them, (Psalm 107:29-30) in a “God helps those who help them­selves” kind of way. Tami has to cut loose the wreckage that threatens to drag the boat under. She has to patch the side and pump out the interior, then rig a sailing solution with what she has left. Thus God has given her a (barely) sea­worthy craft. Once they set sail for Hawaii, God has helped them with favorable wind and current. With sextant, digital watch, nautical charts, and some shaky math skills, God has helped them with the navigation. God has provided an ocean full of fish to eat; it's just a matter of vegetarian Tami spearing them. As for drinking water God sends a squall, but she has to catch it in buckets. Not every ship that passes will ignore them, but some­one still has to shoot off a star burst flare. And when Tami spots land—or was it a land bird?—she can (Psalm 107:31) “praise the Lord for his goodness.” Tami: “Oh, my God!” Then (Psalm 107:32) comes the book deal.

Production Values

This adventure, “” (2018) was directed by Baltasar Kormákur. The screen­play was written by Aaron Kandell, Jordan Kandell and David Branson Smith. It was adapted from the book, Red Sky in Mourning, by Tami Oldham Ash­craft & Susea McGear­hart. It stars Shailene Woodley and Sam Claflin. The two leads delivered the goods: they had good chemistry together, their sailing looked real, and their responses to danger genuine.

MPAA rated it PG–13 for injury images, peril, language, brief drug use, partial nudity and thematic elements. The 96 min. version worked well for a story length. Although I enjoy reading books, and especially sea novels, I felt the movie stood well on its own. Robert Richard­son's cinema­tog­raphy was beautiful and his storm scene well done.

Review Conclusion w/ Christian Recommendation

This would make a good date movie hands down. The trailer doesn't exploit every­thing. It's satisfying on multiple levels. Tami exemplifies the military bromide, siudo (suck it up, drive on.)

Movie Ratings

Action factor: Edge of your seat action scenes. Suitability for Children: Suitable for children 13+ years with guidance. Special effects: Well done special effects. Suspense: Keeps you on the edge of your seat in the ocean scenes. Video Occasion: Good Date Movie. Overall movie rating: Four stars out of five.