The Deep Blue Sea

Film Review by Philip Concannon | 21 Nov 2011
Film title: The Deep Blue Sea
Director: Terence Davies
Starring: Rachel Weisz, Tom Hiddlestone, Simon Russell Beale, Ann Mitchell
Release date: 25 Nov
Certificate: 12A

The Deep Blue Sea is the first narrative feature Terence Davies has directed in over a decade, and the material is a perfect match for this great filmmaker. Terence Rattigan's play tells the story of a love affair between a married woman, Hester (Rachel Weisz), and a dashing RAF pilot (Tom Hiddleston), an affair built on sexual passion that ultimately fails to bring them happiness.

This story allows Davies to recreate the sights and sounds of the post-war era that so much of his cinema exists in, and he finds the perfect tone throughout, pitching the film on the cusp of melodrama and utilising some elegant camerawork that recalls Max Ophüls. Hiddleston (alternately charming and cruel) and Simon Russell Beale (sincere and moving) give fine performances as the two very different men in Hester's life, but both are overshadowed by Weisz's storming display. A devastating blend of sharp intelligence and raw emotions, Weisz provides the beating heart at the centre of Davies' beautiful, tragic film.

Released 25 Nov by Artificial Eye