From the BFI Film Festival
This was a bafflingly downbeat film with which to end the BFI London Film Festival. It’s well acted and beautiful to look at — but as drama, it’s dreary.
Director Terence Davies’s take on Terence Rattigan’s play involves a romantic triangle circa 1950, with Lady Hester Collyer (Rachel Weisz) walking out of a respectable but sexless marriage to judge Sir William Collyer (Simon Russell Beale).
'Gorgeous, privileged woman's whingeing': Rachel Weisz's character was hard to empathise with
Tragedy not that deep: You feel these agonies belong on a magazine's problem page rather than the big screen
She shacks up with former RAF pilot Freddie Page (Tom Hiddleston). Freddie’s dashing, but nowhere near as much in love with Hester as she is with him. Therein lies the tragedy.
The trouble is, the tragedy really isn’t that deep. You feel these agonies belong on a magazine’s problem page rather than the big screen.
Davis sets a snail’s pace. Russell Beale turns Sir William into a decent enough cove, but he’s a bore, under the thumb of his mother (a delightfully poisonous Barbara Jefford).
Hiddlestone fails to make Freddie even slightly likeable, which makes Weisz’s performance — though her most luminous since The Constant Gardener — hard to empathise with. By the end, I was fed up with this gorgeous, privileged woman’s whingeing.
A bafflingly downbeat film with which to end the BFI London Film Festival: The Deep Blue Sea is well acted and beautiful to look at - but as drama, it's dreary