“Tonight’s (or last night’s since I’m future dating this) post brought to you by Netflix. Because it was “”new movie”” kinda night. Said new movie is Hours, one of the last films of Paul Walker’s career, released just two weeks after his death. Sad face.
The film begins with Walker’s Nolan rushing to the hospital with his pregnant wife in duress. He loses her, but not before she is able to deliver their daughter. Since the baby is premature, she’s dependent on a ventilator for the next 48 hours or so. Oh and also, we’re in New Orleans and Hurricane Katrina is about to hit. Nolan is trapped in the hospital, unable to move his premie baby and her equipment. When the power goes out, he has to manually crank the back up battery on her machinery every couple of minutes to keep her alive. Meanwhile, he needs to try and find help.
This movie was intense, even if the action was limited. It just starts off on such a tough note, and then the impact of Katrina is almost too much to handle. It lightens up a bit with flashback sequences as Nolan is telling his daughter about her mother, but every time he thinks he has his situation under control, there’s another obstacle or crisis. Add onto that the fatigue that he’s feeling as the hour stretch on. I’ll admit to getting a little emotional at the ending (even though I knew how it had to conclude), but that’s simply because I am a total sucker for a good father/daughter story.
So sad that this was about where Walker’s career ended, because this may just be his career best performance. He had made a niche for himself with the Fast franchise, and often took on similar roles, but this one is so different. Nolan still has that good guy core that is essential for Walker, but there’s a range of emotion we don’t see from him often. Also, it was incredibly demanding physically as Nolan’s strength wore out. All that, AND for a good majority of the film, Walker is the only person on screen. That takes talent and guts, and it’s such a bummer that we never got to see more of this side of him.”