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October 8, 2021

At the Movies: Thai cave incident explored in riveting ‘The Rescue'

AP Film Writer

The outcome is right there in the title. And yet the new documentary “ The Rescue,” about the harrowing 18-day ordeal in which 12 young soccer players and their coach were saved from a flooded cave in Thailand, is still a stressful, suspenseful experience. It's other things, too — affirming, truthful, funny, macabre and unembellished — but it achieves something extraordinarily difficult for a global news story that ended three years ago: It makes you feel like you're there.

From the “Free Solo” Oscar-winning filmmaking team E. Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin, who took audiences sweaty-palmed up the vertical slope of Yosemite's El Capitan, “The Rescue” is perhaps an even more accomplished piece. It's assuredly focused for a story with so many components and characters. Instead of trying to make it about everything, the filmmakers decided to hone in exclusively on the rescue efforts and to mostly let the people who were actually there tell the story.

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