Ah, the '80s: a time when we only had but a few television stations in the US (unless you were rich enough to have one of those fancy, huge satellite dish thingies), and the nightly news was viewed in almost every home across the nation. Of course, we had to watch it. After all, what if the Russians launched nuclear missiles at us, thus turning our Cold War into World War III? Fortunately, news broadcasters occasionally took a weight off our minds, such as when they brought us day-to-day accounts of three whales trapped within the ice of Alaska. If you were there, you might remember the incident. If you weren't, good news: somebody made a movie about it.
Naturally, most of the facts behind the basis of the film — an event that has since become known as Operation Breakthrough — have been altered drastically or dropped altogether in order to truly sell the family drama Big Miracle. Numerous political and eco-friendly undertones have been added, as has a love story or two, and so on. But that's all pretty much irrelevant if you're looking for something to simply be entertained by, because Big Miracle does at least succeed in that respect.
Drew Barrymore takes the lead as Rachel, a gung-ho Greenpeace volunteer who gets tangled in a great big media circus spawned by her kind-hearted reporter ex, Adam (John Krasinski) who discovers three gray whales trapped in the ice near Point Barrow, Alaska. As Rachel attempts to get a local governor (Stephen Root) and oil magnate (Ted Danson) alike to help out with a rescue operation — a task easier said than done since she has ticked them all off on multiple occasions — Adam tries to gain enough media coverage to entice the rest of the world to assist.