Production House: Netflix, Bron Studios
Cast: Chris Evans, Michael K. Williams, Haley Bennett, Michiel Huisman, Alessandro Nivola, Greg Kinnear, Ben Kingsley, Alex Hassell, Mark Ivanir, Chris Chalk, Alona Tal
Producers: Gideon Raff, Aaron L. Gilbert, Alexandra Milchan
Story: Gideon Raff
Direction: Gideon Raff
The Red Sea Diving Resort is based on the operation of Mossad agents when they safely deported Jewish Ethiopians from Sudan to Israel. To do that, Israeli Mossad agents buy a hotel in Sudan, to help Jewish refugees escape to Jerusalem.
Post the success of ‘Avengers: Endgame’ the stardom of Chris Evans is expected to give a certain amount of viewership to the movie. The much-loved star parted ways with his stardom, but even amidst his dusty jeans, unsettling hair, a part of him seemed unconvincing. Mainly because in the tropical desert of Sudan, he was seen in a jacket, and when he went to sleep, he wrapped himself with a thick blanket.
Evans as Ari leads the operation to deport Jewish refugees from Ethiopia to Israel, and at times it gets evident that Chris the actor understands that the film mainly rests on his stardom. He receives mild support from Hayley Bennett, Greg Kinnear and Ben Kingsley but some of the tourists who come to visit a fake hotel simply remain flat. I mean, imagine a bunch of tourists from Germany travel eight hours in the dusty land of Sudan, only to find a hotel that has not yet been developed, has dusty rooms and there’s nothing first-class about what it is advertised to be? Would you not complain and bicker all the time? Instead, they just go along with the story, like as if they know their complains and behaviour are not a part of the narration of ‘The Red Sea Diving Resort’, and that is mainly to focus on the international operation. However, what seemed like a plan A, became a cover for their operation. Ari, who is a passionate hero, suddenly forgot the risks of using tourists as their shield; For a moment it seemed as if the entire cast forgot that since this movie is about the Jews let us not worry about the German tourists for now, who probably had no connection with Adolf Hitler.
Despite the slight flaws in the film, the movie fails to lose grip, even if you pause to take a break you would want to come back and know what happened next. Special credit can be given to the technicians looking after the lights because even without the presence of watches and clocks they could tell us the time of the day.
In the first few hours as each time a rescue operation is successful, the film awkwardly cuts to another shot. Spectacular camera movements which captured the essence of the night, the brutality of the refugees couldn’t create the desired impact due to bad editing.
Not all heroes have a shield and possess the power to pick up the Mjolnir. Here Chris Evans, who is Ari Levinson is a passionate, slightly eccentric hero without superpowers. He has a plan A, plan B, and a plan C, but when your mission involves secretly evacuating Jewish refugees living under Muslim military reign, you need more than a plan Z. Despite being a DC Comics fan I must confess, there were moments when I wished if only Captain America could swoop in and kill all the militants with the power of the Mjolnir. (But sadly, this isn’t a world created by Stan Lee).
Unlike Ben Affleck's 'Argo' this film slightly becomes a bit about leisure. Maybe because in ‘Argo’ he had to save seven American hostages who weren't completely clueless, but in 'Red Sea Diving Resort', Ari and his team have to escape with an entire race of Jewish Ethiopians, who hardly have any idea about the route to Jerusalem. All they want is any way out from the god.
The story remains true to its ground and the rescuers are not particularly glorified but are shown as real people who also suffer from a meltdown, when held at gunpoint. There are moments when a doctor blames Ari for refusing to accept a no from him because he preferred a lavish life in the first world country over a risky life amidst militants.
In an ideal film, a doctor is always someone akin to a god, but here, director Raff dares to show a doctor who hates the idea of going to the field to help people in refugee camps. At a time when the world is divided over the topic of terrorism and religion, director Gaff dares to openly call out the religious leader’s identity and brand them as killers. One needs an immense amount of patience and attachment to reality to sit through such hard-hitting dialogues.