The Great Invisible


The Great Invisible (2014)


Critic Consensus: Empathetic, smartly crafted, and ultimately devastating, The Great Invisible offers a deep and expansive look at the causes and effects of American energy policy.


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On April 20, 2010, the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico in a blaze of fire that could be seen 35 miles away, killing 11 workers and causing the worst oil spill in American history. THE GREAT INVISIBLE, the first comprehensive overview of the incident and its aftermath, is the result of four years that Alabama-born Brown spent traveling in the small towns and major cities all around the Gulf, talking to those affected. With an eye for unforgettable characters, Brown gained the trust of a wide range of people- from industry insiders to small-town fishermen, from lawyers administering BP's faulty compensation fund to the shell-shocked survivors of the initial blast (one of whom provides chilling first-person video taken onboard the Deepwater Horizon in the days leading up to the disaster). Together, their testimony adds up to a damning portrait of an industry whose lack of government oversight led to unthinkable catastrophe - a lack of oversight that has not changed, despite the widespread outrage at the time. (C) Radius-TWC

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Critic Reviews for The Great Invisible

All Critics (33) | Top Critics (12)

Brown seamlessly blends the emotional, intimate stories of people with bigger pictures, using the explosion as the starting point for a ripple effect that just keeps growing.

Nov 6, 2014 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Most of all, it's a sobering look at a part of coastal America that will never be the same again.

Nov 5, 2014 | Rating: A- | Full Review…

Quietly devastating ...

Oct 30, 2014 | Full Review…

The film acknowledges [the] instinct toward simplistic polarization, but then softly, compellingly tries to push against it.

Oct 30, 2014 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Is there any real point to making a documentary about a widely publicized event if the film conforms precisely to any rational viewer's expectations?

Oct 29, 2014 | Rating: C+ | Full Review…
AV Club
Top Critic

Brown's gift is in the interviews she gets, which include a grieving father whose son was killed in the explosion and two oil rig workers who now suffer from a variety of maladies, including PTSD and depression.

Oct 29, 2014 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

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