Movie Review: The Deep Blue Sea (2011) | 8.5/10
Movie Review by Quick Flix
Rachel Weisz and Tom Hiddleston star as illicit lovers in this adaptation of Terence Rattigan’s acclaimed play The Deep Blue Sea. When it first debuted on the stage back in 1952, the post-war setting was a contemporary one. Sixty years ago, it was likely an immediate, intense, and important piece of work.
But today, thanks to Terence Davies’ adaptation, it feels like a turgid, ponderous, unsuitably melodramatic tale that is over-performed and over-written (kind of like this review). That’s not to denigrate Rattigan’s legacy, of course (his play’s standing in the history books won’t be dislodged). As a modern movie, however, The Deep Blue Sea is more concerned with replicating period detail than anything else.
Movie Review by Paste
Terence Davies belongs to that select group of filmmakers—alongside Kubrick and Terrence Mallick—who get around to making a movie once or twice a decade and whose films become exemplars of a singular vision and immaculate craftsmanship. Since 1988’s Distant Voices, Still Lives, Davies has created five features and one documentary that, taken together, form a remarkable mosaic of Davies’s autobiography and memories of post-WW2 English life weaved into themes of heartbreak and isolation. His latest, The Deep Blue Sea, an adaptation of Terence Rattigan’s 1952 play, fits neatly into that body of work as it follows Hester (Rachel Weisz), a married woman in emotional freefall in the wake of a frustrated affair in post-WW2 London.
Movie Review by Cole Smithey
Musky with a dry wit that induces laugh-out-loud chuckles, Terence Davies’ spot-on adaptation of Terence Rattigan’s brilliant 1952 theatrical stage drama, is a finely crafted gem of British post World War II malaise. The filmmakers perform no easy feat of putting the audience in the uncomfortably melancholy mind of the story’s romantic leading lady. Hester Collyer (Rachel Weisz) is intensely intellectual, and defined by a passion that draws her away from a wealthy-but-emotionally-remote husband (Sir William Collyer—wonderfully played with tonal depth by Simon Russell Beale). Rachel Weisz keenly exposes her character’s emotional, psychological, and sexual conflicts during a time of rebuilding from war’s devastating effects. A master of creating character—in the Stanislavski sense—Weisz creates a very complex portrayal of human desire.