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Review: The Deep Blue Sea

A bad dream trapped in amber
By MICHAEL ATKINSON  |  March 29, 2012
2.0 2.0 Stars

Like a bad dream trapped in amber, Terence Davies's studied film adaptation of Terence Rattigan's famous 1952 play is both spectrally beautiful and frozen in self-regard. Rachel Weisz stars as Hester, the young wife of a dull older judge (Simon Russell Beale) who becomes besotted with a layabout ex-RAF pilot (Tom Hiddleston), throwing over her middle-Brit tepidity for a passionate existence groveling before the lout. Moment by moment, the film limns a crucial bit of British character — the lostness between propriety and passion, especially as it manifested during and after the intense heart massage of WWII. Still, however revered Rattigan's play is, Davies's film is often as enervating as its heroine, and Weisz's casting makes you wonder why such a beautiful woman would put up with either of these two pickles. Rattigan's drama is a small room to maneuver in, and in the end Hester's despair is hers alone.
  Topics: Reviews , Movie Reviews, Rachel Weisz, film
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