Adrift Adventure

Review: ‘Adrift’ is an Intense True Story About Love and Survival Against Grave Odds

June 1, 2018Britany Murphy

Imagine being on a sailboat headed to California with a dangerous storm headed your way. You are at the mercy of the elements, with no other ships around for miles. It is something that most people could seldom fathom; but for Tami Oldham and Richard Sharp, it was a harsh reality which turned into a story unlike any other.

In 1983, 23-year-old Tami Oldham (Shailene Woodley) wound up in Tahiti. With no set date to leave the island country, Oldham got a job working at one of the marinas. It is during this new adventure in her life that she meets sailor Richard Sharp (Sam Claflin). The duo strike up a friendship, bonding over their love of the ocean, travel and adventure. Unsurprisingly, the pair soon wind up in a whirlwind romance which sees them through the "honeymoon" phase of their relationship and eventual engagement.

Sailing with one another for six months, Richard and Tami meet a pair of Richard's friends, Peter (Jeffrey Thomas) and Christine (Elizabeth Hawthorne), in Tahiti. The couple have to return to England to care for an ailing family member, and knowing that Richard is an avid and knowledgeable sailor, they ask if he'd be able to sail their ship from Tahiti to California, promising him a generous sum of money as well as two first-class return tickets back to Tahiti once the favor is completed. Knowing that Tami hails from California, Richard agrees, as he's keen on going with her to see her home state.

In preparation for the long trip ahead, Tami writes her mother a letter to inform her that she'll be back in California soon. The prospect of her mother meeting Richard is equal parts nerve-racking and exciting. The couple set off as soon as all of their supplies have been gathered, but what they do not know is that whilst on their beautiful journey on the Pacific Ocean, a hurricane will set its sights on their route. The couple quickly has to get into survival mode in order to weather the storm, but the odds are against them.

Woodley and Claflin have amazing chemistry as Tami and Richard. The duo are utterly believable as the star-crossed couple, and in every scene the pair shares, you believe that they truly are in love and are in a state of bliss from one another's company. When their circumstances turn dire, both Woodley and Claflin's characters' fear, helplessness, desperation and strength are palpable. They knock their performances out of the park, embodying each and every emotion the script demands of them with ease.

Directed by Baltasar Kormákur and based on the book "Red Sky in Mourning: The True Story of a Woman's Courage and Survival at Sea," written by Tami Oldham-Ashcraft and Susan McGearhart, the result is a harrowing story of love and survival against all odds. Adrift is a heart-wrenching tale that speaks to our base instinct of survival, as well as the lengths we will go to to save our loved ones.

Adrift releases June 1st, 2018 from VVS Films. The film has an MPAA rating of PG-13 for injury images, peril, language, brief drug use, partial nudity and thematic elements. Its runtime is 1 hr. 35 min.

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