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A few years back, there was a call for extras in a movie produced by Drew Barrymore with the title Everyone Loves Whales. As much as I longed to put my name into that hat, we had plans to visit family as my youngest sister was getting married. But, I longed to see the finished product. Having seen it twice in the past few months, I thought it was the perfect time to share my thoughts on Big Miracle as a family friendly film.
About Big Miracle
Barrow newsman Adam Carlson cant wait to escape the northern tip of Alaska for a bigger market. But just when the story of his career breaks, the world comes chasing it too. With an oil tycoon, heads of state and hungry journalists descending upon the frigid outpost to get their moment in the midnight sun, the one person who occupies Adam the most is Rachel Kramer. Not only is she an outspoken environmentalist, she also happens to be his ex-girlfriend.
With time running out, Rachel, Adam and Nathan, an 11-year-old native Alaskan boy who learns to connect with his people and his culture, must rally an unlikely coalition of locals, oil companies and Russian and American military to set aside their differences and unite for a purpose they all believe in: freeing the whales in record time. As the Alaskans frantically try to dig miles of holes on one side of the ice and a Soviet icebreaker pushes inland on the other, they must perform the virtually impossible to bridge a four-mile gap. And if they miraculously succeed, the trapped whales will be freed to the safety of open sea to begin their 5,000-mile annual migration.
As the worlds attention turns to the top of the globe for two weeks, saving these endangered animals becomes a shared cause for nations entrenched against one another and leads to an unexpected, momentary thaw in the Cold War.
My Thoughts on Big Miracle
Overall, this is definitely a family friendly film that I’d recommend for a family movie night. There are no sex scenes to skip through and any language is so minimal that I can’t even recall it after 2 viewings. You can read a detailed parent guide for Big Miracle on the IMDB site. The cast was well selected and I loved their performances.
I loved that the movie is based on actual events and of course even more so as there’s the Alaskan setting. We haven’t been to Barrow, but the Anchorage scenes were all familiar locales for us. I have a few friends who have lived up there and for them I’m sure some of the sites were familiar. And, I can completely relate to the scarcity of familiar creature comforts as well as the small ‘airport’ which the characters encounter in Barrow as those experiences are par for the course in most locales up here outside of the ‘big’ cities of Anchorage, Fairbanks and Juneau. You also get a glimpse of the real life individuals portrayed in the movie during the closing credits.
While my boys tend to make fun of individuals that support organizations like Greenpeace, they did enjoy watching this film and see how the community both in Alaska and from around the world rallied together to save this whale family. This film actually provided an opportunity for discussion about how some causes might seem a bit strange to them, yet have a way to bring people together from opposite sides of the fence. The boys would have sided with the local Alaskans who would have harvested the whales if media attention wasn’t already on them. I can’t say that I blame them for not wanting to look like uncaring to the general public who is not always friendly to hunting of any sort.
Have you and your family watched Big Miracle yet?
What’s a great family friendly movie that you’ve seen lately?
This post has been submitted for inclusion in The Christian Home Issue 119 hosted here. As the featured columnist for the Movies and Music category, you can be looking forward to weekly posts on what we are watching or music we’ve enjoyed. Feel free to leave suggestions for me as well that are family friendly or uplifting for adults. While I have movies and some music selections in mind, I’m always on the lookout for other great choices.