For Norway’s first foray into the disaster film genre, Roar Uthaug’s THE WAVE, it was not a complete disaster of a film. It did follow every cliché in the book (the scientist who predicts doom but no one will listen, the family that has issues, the family member who does not hear the warning, etc.) but it was intense and did not let down once the action started.
Kristian (Kristoffer Joner) is a geologist who is working his last day on the job in the town of Geiranger, a town that is located in a fjord near a mountain pass. His job is to monitor the mountain pass so that if an avalanche happens in the fjord, he can warn the townspeople before a tsunami hits. Of course, this being a disaster film, no one that he works with believes him when he says that they should sound the warning, they do not want to cry wolf. So of course, the avalanche happens, the tsunami happens and Kristian must race to save his family from the tsunami.
The film, unlike a lot of Hollywood disaster films, works well on so many levels, from the acting to the believable story and the effects, and it delivers on the tension and anticipation. The first thirty minutes does tend to drag setting up the event, but once that avalanche happens and that waves starts, it is a hand-gripping-the-edge-of-your-seat kind of film for the last hour. One of the best disaster films to be released this year.
Released on 26 May 2016
Words by Russell Boaz