Film Review: “The Deep Blue Sea” (2011) ★★★★

© 2011 – Music Box Films

Sometimes losing a big thing for something is unthinkable and childish. However, when Hester Collyer threw herself into a self-destructive love affair with a Royal Air Force pilot, she stops thinking rationally right at that moment and follows her heart that will take her right to the deep blue sea. And now it’s up to her to stay afloat or get drowned by an affair that’s completely blinded by passion which can have only one ending…

The best instrument that gives a perfect rhythm to Hester’s feeling is the violin you will hear throughout the film. Even when the camera follows her in the beginning, when she quietly sits and watches her husband, it’s Rachel Weisz performance and the violin best describes the storm raging in her heart at that particular moment. However, that’s not how the story begins.

It’s London, around 1950s, Hester writes a letter to Freddie (Tom Hiddleston) explaining her desire to die. Her landlady, Mrs. Elton (Ann Mitchell) rushes to her room, and calls for immediate help. Later on, she will ask Hester to not repeat that again. But then she adds, “Sometimes it’s difficult to judge when you’re caught between the devil and the deep blue sea. A lot of rubbish is talked about love. You know what real love is? It’s wiping someone’s arse or changing the sheets when they’ve wet themselves. And letting them keep their dignity so you can both go on. Suicide? No one’s worth it.”

But how those important words could have reached its aim, when for Hester, Freddie was her whole life and death. Losing him for her meant like loosing a life. In the meantime, it’s fascinating to see how Sir. William Collyer (Simon Russel Beale) still tenderly loves his unfaithful wife, and offers her everything she needs except being incapable of giving her passionate love. Perhaps, it’s a big difference in their age is what makes her unbearable to share the same roof with her well-respect husband. But that is up to the viewer’s imagination to let it play on.

Her husband even brings her a belated birthday gift when Freddie forgets doing that. Terrence Davies’ film well describes the relationship between Freddie and Hester, and being so unlike each other. It’s sensual feelings and great love that makes them stay together, however, it’s her who appears to have a certain control over a younger man, who she falls for very hard. But the drama sometimes she creates makes him distance himself from her as far as possible which triggers another unimaginable effects.

Despite having a great story, adapted onto silver screen by Terence Davies (a play by Terence Rattigan), it’s Racheal Weisz and the violin that singlehandedly leaves everyone else behind. Weisz delivers one of the best performances as a self-destructive woman. Davies, knowing her acting abilities, gives her all possible freedom to do anything she wants with Hester. And what she does is something incredible, outstanding and sublime. In conclusion, “The Deep Blue Sea” is a dark, wonderful and heartbreaking film in which Rachel Weisz proves once again that she’s one of the best actresses of her generation.

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