Watch The Flood
The Flood is a 2018 dramatic film that tells the story of Wendy, an immigration officer played by Lena Headey, who is tasked with determining the fate of a Syrian asylum seeker called Haile, portrayed by Ivanno Jeremiah. The film is directed by Anthony Woodley and features an ensemble cast including Jack Gordon, Iain Glen, and Angela Bassett.
The movie takes place in the midst of a European refugee crisis that has seen an influx of asylum seekers desperate for a better life. Wendy is assigned to interview Haile to determine his status. Wendy is a seasoned immigration officer who has seen her fair share of refugees and has become hardened over the years by her job. Haile is a refugee who has survived a perilous journey across the Mediterranean and has been smuggled into the UK. Despite the obvious trauma he has faced, he remains hopeful that he will be granted asylum and a chance to rebuild his life.
The film opens with Wendy arriving at a detention center where she is to interview Haile. She is shown around the facility by an affable colleague called Philip, played by Iain Glen, who offers her some insights into the challenges she is likely to face during her time there. Wendy appears to be emotionally detached as she walks around the center, interacting with the inmates without any apparent empathy.
Throughout the film, we see Wendy struggle with demons from her past, chief among them the loss of a daughter many years ago. Her detachment is explained, at least partially, by this terrible tragedy, which has left her scarred emotionally. Despite this, she remains professional in her dealings with Haile, who is kind and respectful towards her, even as he is treated with suspicion by other guards.
Haile tells Wendy his story, and we are taken on a journey that is both heartbreaking and inspiring. He speaks about his family's struggles in Syria, the war, and the hardships they faced as refugees. We are shown flashbacks of his journey across the Mediterranean, the perils of crossing the sea in a rickety boat, the abuse and exploitation he faced at the hands of smugglers. Through it all, he remains stoic, buoyed by a deep sense of faith in God.
The film's central theme is the conflict between the rules and regulations that govern the immigration system and the humanity that refugees require. Wendy is torn between her duty to uphold the law and her compassion for Haile, whose story resonates with her. She is faced with the question of whether to follow the letter of the law or to grant him asylum based on his compelling story.
Angela Bassett appears in a small but significant role towards the end of the film. She plays Wendy's boss, who is impressed by Wendy's dedication to her job but is also troubled by her emotional detachment. Bassett's character challenges Wendy to confront her past and to find a way to reconcile her emotional trauma with her professional obligations.
The Flood is a powerful and poignant film that tackles one of the most significant issues of our time. The performances are excellent, with Lena Headey delivering a nuanced portrayal of a woman struggling with her emotions. Ivanno Jeremiah is outstanding as Haile, infusing the character with a quiet dignity that is both inspiring and heartbreaking.
The movie is beautifully shot, with the cinematography capturing the bleakness of the detention center contrasted against the beauty of Haile's flashbacks. Director Anthony Woodley does an excellent job of keeping the film grounded in reality, avoiding the temptation to over-sentimentalize the story.
In conclusion, The Flood is a thought-provoking and emotionally charged film that is sure to leave an indelible impression on viewers. It is a must-watch for anyone interested in social justice issues and the plight of refugees.
The Flood is a documentary. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.6.