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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Big Miracle

Critics say film shows how "good can rise to the surface"

Big Miracle is a wonderful feel-good movie is based on a real-life incident in Alaska during the Cold War in 1988.

A local reporter spots three California gray whales trapped in the ice.

Drew Barrymore stars as Rachel Kramer
Drew Barrymore stars as Rachel Kramer in Big Miracle.

The story is picked up by NBC Nightly News and then aired across the country. More than 150 journalists from around the world show up in Barrow, Alaska.

The plight of the whales touches people's hearts as they watch the combined efforts to save the animals. Among those involved are a passionate Greenpeace activist, a leader in the Alaska National Guard, an Eskimo elder and some Russians manning a huge icebreaker.

Ken Kwapis directs this rescue drama with a keen sense of its multiple messages about whales, the media circus, the threat to traditional Eskimo life, and the positive things that can happen when opposing individuals and groups band together for a common cause. It proves that good can rise to the surface even when everyone seems to only be concerned about self-interest (Universal Pictures, PG — language).


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