Naomi Watts was nominated for a Best Actress Oscar for her perfomance in this movie. Although I think she gave an OK performance, I think she owes the nomination to her makeup artist.
Well, Ms. Watts starts out pretty, playing Maria, wife of Henry (Ewan McGregor), and sons Lucas, Thomas, and Simon. They are having a swell time at a beachside resort in Thailand. When, with no warning, the entire area is nearly scrubbed off the map by a tsunami. (Which really happened on the day after Christmas, 2004. Somewhere around a quarter million people were killed. Mother Nature can be a murderous psycho bitch sometimes.)
What follows is the harrowing story of how Maria and Lucas are separated from Henry, Thomas, and Simon. Maria is grievously injured by the wave, and she and Lucas must somehow find medical help. Henry and the other boys are in better shape, but they have a tough time navigating through the post-disaster chaos.
And that's pretty much it. If you enjoy based-on-truth movies about people suffering though agonizing events, persevering and (eventually) succeeding, then it's for you. Me, not so much, sorry. There's no great heroism, no great cowardice either, no impressive displays of cleverness or resourcefulness, just people kind of muddling through a horrible situation until it's over. Eh.