Toy story based on real events

Movie tip: Movie tip: The call of the whales

by Sebastian Kröschel
Based on a true story: When a family of whales in Alaska is trapped in the ice, environmentalists, journalists and residents of a nearby city fight together for the lives of the animals. The dramatic rescue also calls on politicians, who have their own ulterior motives. With trailer!

In 1988 it was a bitterly cold winter in Barrow, the northernmost town in the USA. That's why local reporter Adam Carlson is drawn to warmer climes. But shortly before he turns his back on Barrow, he discovers a family of whales that have been trapped by the ice off the coast. Because whales have to emerge to breathe, they cannot continue their journey. Carlson's dramatic images of the trapped animals soon travel around the world, triggering a wave of compassion. Before long, journalists poured into Barrow and reported on the whales.

Carlson's ex-girlfriend Rachel Kramer also traveled to Barrow. The passionate environmentalist succeeds in getting the American government and an oil tycoon on their side. A dramatic rescue operation begins, but the weather is working against the helpers. As the temperatures drop sharply, the situation seems more and more hopeless. The only hope of saving the whales would be a Soviet icebreaker. But in 1988 there was still the Cold War between the USA and the Soviet Union. Asking the Soviets for help, of all people, is unthinkable for the American government. But Rachel, Adam and the people of Barrow do not give up and fight bitterly for the lives of the whale family.

A true story

The story of "The Call of the Whales" actually happened in 1988. At that time, many media worldwide reported about the trapped marine mammals. The story also caused a stir politically: the Cold War hardened the fronts between the USA and the Soviet Union - cooperation was almost unthinkable. As a subplot, the film tells the love story of Rachel and Adam (Drew Barrymore and John Krasinski). Above all, Drew Barrymore plays her role perfectly: relaxed and believable, she embodies the sympathetic environmentalist as well as the difficult ex-girlfriend.

Although the film has no age limit, it is only suitable to a limited extent for the youngest audience. The political background is a bit dry, and if you don't know anything about the Cold War, you might not understand some things. "The Call of the Whales" is also not recommended for fans of fast-paced, action-packed films. Director Ken Kwapis shows rather calm images of the breathtaking ice landscape of Alaska. Anyone who likes such beautiful shots and a well-told love story will like "The Call of the Whales". The drama about the whale family is almost neglected with all the trimmings. But in the end the film always finds its way back to the main story.


"The Call of the Whales" is a beautifully told and well-cast natural drama and at the same time a romantic comedy. Younger viewers could have problems understanding because of the political entanglements. For everyone else, the film can be recommended without reservation.

"The Call of the Whales" - in the cinema from February 16! No age restriction