I guess I’m writing about another movie we watched this week. Like 14 Peaks, this one was also really good. After this, I’ll be done talking about movies for a while. Maybe.
‘Is it possible to anesthetize the children?’ diver Rick Stanton texted his friend and anesthesiologist, Dr. Richard Harris. ‘Absolutely not. It’s not possible,’ he replied.
The documentary is called The Rescue and retells the story of the 2018 rescue of the Thailand football team trapped inside a flooded cave. Admittedly not having closely followed the events as they unfolded three-and-a-half years ago, we watched it to learn as well as it was directed by the husband and wife team that created Free Solo, Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin.
What caught my attention in The Rescue wasn’t quite as profane as what caught my attention in 14 Peaks, but just as profound. Despite Dr. Harris’ thinking it was impossible, Rick persisted. When he mentioned it to Captain Mitch Torrell, a US Air Force officer, he was told, ‘I think that’s a horrible idea.’
‘What if it’s the only idea?’ Rick asked.
That question ultimately is what led to the successful rescue of every single boy in that cave. I don’t think it’s a coincidence. Asking ‘what if… ?’ in my opinion is one of the most powerful questions possible because, well, it unlocks the impossible.