The 33 – A Tragic Accident and a Heroic Rescue


Five years ago, the world followed this tragic accident in an unknown small mining town in Chile where 33 miners were trapped 2000 feet below the surface. We have hears about this type of mining accident before but, what stood out here were the family members who never lost hope and set up camp near the mine to force the powers that be to pay attention and rescue their loved ones trapped below. We know how the story ends, how against all odds, after two months these miners emerged from their death trap. The miners were in the news again recently when they visited the Pope who celebrated the 5th anniversary of their rescue. This film brings their story into perspective and makes you feel their pain. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Harmony M. comments, “Watching this film made me feel the pain of the miners, the anxiety of the families and the stress of the rescue team. I could personally feel the struggle from every side of the story.” Lainey A. adds, “This movie is so suspenseful because it connects the audience to the characters and I did not want to see any of them die.” See their full review below.

The 33

By Harmony M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16


With its empowering story, visuals and acting, this film brings another true survival story to life. A group of thirty three gold miners go to work in the underlying mountains of Chile when their lives quickly turn upside down. Stranded by the collapse of the rocks, the men are forced to work together, struggle for food, stay optimistic despite their life threatening condition. With every second so crucial, the intensity of the film leaves the audience on the edge of their seats.

Watching this film made me feel the pain of the miners, the anxiety of the families and the stress of the rescue team. I could personally feel the struggle from every side of the story.

This is an amazing aspect of the film, especially because it is based on a true story. What better way to gain awareness than to make individuals feel the experience for themselves. I felt like throwing up throughout the whole movie and that just shows how amazingly the filmmakers depicted this horrifyingly true story of the innocent men who were stranded and their struggle to survive.

The filmmakers have created a film that makes the audience feel as though they are experiencing the struggle rather than just watching it. I felt as if I was starving and becoming dehydrated just by watching. It’s what makes the movie feel so real.

The persuasive acting contributes to the empowering movie, especially Antonio Banderas whose performance as the leader, Mario was so believable. It’s a role completely different from what he usually plays and he made me believe he was a Chilean miner.

Usually films based on tragic events feel depressing but this film feels empowering and comedic in certain scenes. I enjoyed that.

The film didn’t make the best impression at first but, it became very engaging and strong towards the end. I give a lot of credit to its great ending because, in my opinion, an ending can really make or break a movie.

I give the movie four out of five stars and recommend it for people between the ages of 13 and 18. Adults will enjoy it as well. Check this film out in theaters today.

The 33
By Lainey A., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

This live-action feature film directed by the Patricia Riggen is truly inspirational and I love it!  The 33 is based on the true story of the 2010 Chilean San Jose mine collapse and the 33 miners trapped 2,300 feet below ground.  This movie is so suspenseful because it connects the audience to the characters and I did not want to see any of them die.

This movie taught me that you should be hopeful and not think the worst even when it seems hopeless.  The miners kept up hope that they are going to be rescued even though they only have 14 cans of tuna to split between them for an unknown period of time.  This film also shows the importance of team-work because, without it, they would  all perish.

Antonio Banderas really steps out of his typical roles and his rendition of Mario Sepulveda is truly outstanding!  He really transforms into a Chilean miner and he is a true leader among the miners.  Another stand out actor is Rodrigo Santoro who plays Laurence Golborne, Minister of Mining for the Chilean President. He is caring, loving and compassionate and does an outstanding job making me believe that he really cares about these men trapped in the mine.  He does everything in his power to make sure that the miners stay alive and pulls together mining teams from across the world to drill into the ground in hopes of saving the miners.  Josh Brolin plays the role of Jeff Hart, one of the miners sent from the U.S.A. who eventually succeeds in drilling a hole large enough to send in a body cage for the miners.

The target audience for this film is anyone who enjoys adventure and suspenseful movies.  I recommend this movie for ages 10 to 18 because this isn’t gory or a violent movie, but it is suspenseful.  This movie is good for kids because it makes you learn what the lifestyle of a miner in Chile is like. Everyday, they face life or death situations such as this one.

I give this film 5 out of 5 stars because it made me feel like I was there every step of the way.  As the miners said, “All we have is family.”  The love of family, teamwork and hope brought these 33 men back from the depths of despair.  You will be cheering from your seat! Come see this outstanding film when it opens nationwide on November 14!

Credit: KIDS FIRST! Upcoming Attractions,

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