The Impossible (2012)

This emotionally stirring picture is the Belon family’s miraculous story of survival and perseverance following the destruction of the Boxing Day 2004 tsunami. The catastrophic disaster, which ravaged parts of Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India and Thailand, where the five-member family was vacationing, is conveyed in startlingly real detail. In her Oscar-nominated turn as Maria Belon, Naomi Watts delivers the performance of her career.

Side note: The impressively produced but terrifying tsunami scene could only be shot once as it would have been too expensive to reconstruct the set for an additional take.

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