Out now on demand, Out now on dvd/blu-ray

Big Miracle, Movie

Big Miracle 2012

Your Rating/Review

A family of whales trapped beneath the ice. One unforgettable rescue.

A family of three gray whales trapped beneath the ice in Alaska becomes international news in this rescue adventure, starring Drew Barrymore, John Krasinski and Ted Danson. Based on the Tom Rose novel Freeing the Whales, itself inspired by 1988's Operation Breakthrough. More

Reporter Adam (Krasinski) is about to be unwillingly reassigned out of Alaska when three gray whales surface in an ice hole. Covering the story gives him an excuse to stay but when it becomes apparent the whales are trapped, his puff piece becomes big news. Spearheading the rescue effort is Greenpeacer Rachel (Barrymore) who has to first battle and then unite international governments, oil tycoons and Inuit locals to save the three trapped whales. Hide

On demand

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$12.99 - $14.99
(to buy)

$12.99 - $14.99
(to buy)

DVD / Blu-Ray



139 votes / 21 comments The Talk

  • 48 %

    Want to See it

    What say you?

    • Tania

      sniff sniff gotta see this one

    • ghetti

      naw luv barrymore

    • Kirk

      I thought all the ice was melting, due to global warming???

    • Community

      mmm.. looks a bit contrived and schmaltzy rather than heartfelt.

    • Sophie Ferris

      Stupid whales

    • kam

      Sick sweet. ugh.

    • Mark

      Sweet. For people who think that dolphins smile because they're happy!

    • frankie

      nice! love heartwarming movies, especially those with drew barrymore.

    • Mirage

      gives me tingles

    • Ken-Burns

      I reckon always go to a feel good film

    • Ray Barlow

      Movie is inspired by the true story. They changed most of the names and background of the characters. That stinks, I'll still go see it.

    • Barb

      After see the wales on TV the other night WOW truely amazing creatures..This movie is a must

    • Barb

      ops miss dah (h) lol whales

    • Mr G

      How about we buy a helicopter and use our film money to buy a helicopter to save the whales that die in our own backyward each year.

    • Chris Simpson

      This movie is ice breaking my heart <3

    • Amsterdam

      Looks like a cute movie. Plus, I like Drew's hair :)

    • Kepa

      A nature movie, Kool. Gotta go & see it.

    • Jess

      John Krasinski on the big screen?Yes Please!

    • Barb

      This looks awesome! Cant wait to see it...Quite amazing

    • Barb

      PLEASE PLEASE show this on Tuesday only time I will get to see it otherwise


    Want to see it?

The People's Reviews


comment / reply

Barrymore saves the whales

Daphne-Carvalho A-Lister (?)

I wasn't expecting too much from this movie. Thought it was going to be a bad doco of the original happening. I never heard a thing about it at the time. I guess it was before the internet became all prevalent and our wold was so much bigger.

Turns out it was a reasonably well done movie. Krasinski makes for an appealing reporter buried in Alaska trying to find interesting news items. Barrymore is your stereotypical greenie.

I knew nothing about the original story and found it fascinating that so many people with different agendas came together to help that family of whales. One of the best parts was at the end where you see the original characters from the real deal, including the White House.

All in all a warm movie, set in the cold depths of Alaska. Would recommend it as a nice movie the whole family can watch.

Big Miracle

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Press Reviews

73% of critics recommend

Consensus: "Big Miracle uses real-life events as the basis for a surprisingly satisfying family drama."

ROTTEN TOMATOES SCORE. Read more reviews on Rotten Tomatoes.
A.V. Club (USA)

Under its crowd-pleasing exterior lies an undercurrent of bracing cynicism. Full review.

E! Online.com

Whale fans will blubber, but uneven Miracle flounders in its hunt for narrative focus. Full review.

Empire (UK)

The sledgehammer emoting should let you know you're in a family drama. Full review.

Entertainment Weekly (USA)

Big Miracle is harmless enough, but what's annoying about it is its aura of fake activism. Full review.

New York Post

Big Miracle shouldn't really work, but it does. Full review.

New York Times

Big Miracle gets off to a shaky start, but once revved up, it becomes an involving work-against-the-clock-and-the-odds action movie. Full review.

The Guardian (UK)

The whales themselves look like they are about to die of boredom. Full review.

The Observer (UK)

The makers attempt to coat their fascinatingly bitter pill with saccharine. They are, however, only partially successful. Full review.

Time Magazine

There may not be a second of say, Whale Rider's lyricism (that's still the best whale movie out there), but this energetic family movie is less insipid than it looks. Full review.

Total Film (UK)

Not Free Willy but more Free Chilly. Full review.

USA Today

Given the abundance of one-dimensional human portrayals, it becomes apparent that a documentary on the subject might have been more powerful. Full review.

Village Voice (USA)

While rooting for the marine mammals (and wishing for more footage of them-and even of their animatronic incarnations), your heart will also go out to the cast, stuck even more pitiably in syrupy manufactured crises. Full review.