Saturday, November 13, 2021

The Heart of the Sea

 

Movie reviews are supposed to help movie goers decide what to see.  Most of those who write these reviews seem to have forgotten why people go to see movies.


We go to escape.  To enjoy.  To be part of something bigger than ourselves.

We do not go to examine the plot line, seek to deride director errors, editing decisions, actor choices or screen writer inadequacies.

When I wrote this post, “In the Heart of the Sea” was story about a story.  Herman Melville, author of “Moby Dick”, had sought out the one of the survivors, adult Old Man Tom Nickerson who had been the traumatized youngest of the crew on the whaler ship, Essex.  It was a bloody, horrible story, and this survivor needed to wrench the images of memories from his tortured mind.
 
Some strong actors deliver strong performances.

Brendan  Gleason is the adult Old Man Nickerson, who saw the horror of whale hunts when he was innocent and ignorant. Chris Hemsworth is the strong main character who makes hard decisions. He gives an excellent performance.  

Nathaniel Philbrick.JPG
Nathaniel Philbrook
Author Nathaniel Philbrick researched Melville, the painful consequences of the Essex and the greed of the company who owned the ship. With this incredible history, Philbrook wrote "In the Heart of the Sea", based on the events of this tragedy.

Interview and relating the story was therapeutic for both the story teller (played by Brendan Gleeson) and the writer, Melville (played by Ben Whishaw) . Tom Holland in a young actor on his way up: think Spider Man).  Even so, film reviewers turned their noses, criticizing it for lacking “stuff”.  

At This Site  every amateur critic had not read "Moby Dick".  One such critic said this. 

"Nobody gives a crap about Moby Dick.  Just THINKING about the idea of a movie about the friggin' story that inspired the story of Moby Dick puts you to sleep.  How did he (Chris Hemsworth) get paid $80 million to make that?!"  

For us, the movie was riveting.  The actors were strong and skillful.  The director was Ron Howard.  The setting was true to the times.  The interaction between Melville and the survivor was emotional and bonding. Knowing the story of the Essex and its demise hung over the audience, hoping “No, not that!”

Engrossing, hope, loss and gain, greed, a dirty industry, eminent death, and finally redemption—all make for a movie that rises above a flood of bad movies.


Please see what the whaling industry became before its demise.  It was a horror. 

More than that, see what the current intelligentsia reads or has not read. 


27 comments:

  1. I saw this movie in the theatres when it first came out and enjoyed it a lot. I had just finished reading Moby-Dick at the time. Plus I like all the actors in it. It had good special effects too. I don't know why it bombed -- seemed like a good movie to me!

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    1. When we went to see it, there were 3 showtimes only. It was released early, hoping to get in under the time for Oscar nominations. It was a great movie. true history.

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  2. Sounds like an interesting movie, I never heard of it.
    The small cottage in my header is from Mountcharles, co. Donegal.

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    1. What a beautiful cottage. We never visited Donegal.

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  3. Reviews are too often a place for the reviewer to set himself/herself up as being too clever/better informed than the rest of us.
    Huge sigh.

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    1. that is so true. Critics are full of themselves too much.

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  4. I've never heard of it, but it certainly sounds interesting.

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    1. Look it up. I think you would find it interesting.

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  5. I remember hearing about this when it came out. It sounds like I might enjoy it. I think too many movie critics have spent more time in film analysis, so they get bogged down in the details.

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    1. I think you would enjoy it. Great visual and history.

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  6. I can see where actual movie critics can become bored with movies and thus be critical of every little thing.

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    1. that is true. It must be exhausting after a while.

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  7. "it's just a whale" so sad. What I see there is a whale taking revenge for the hurts of his families. Way back then, to whale fishers they weren't thought of as having sense and feelings, they were "just fish" , thankfully nowadays, we know better. Although we did learn it far too late. I'll look for it in the theatres when it gets released here.

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    1. It won't be on the screen. You'll have to find it in Netflix, or similar place. You will enjoy it.

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  8. I cannot remember when I saw movie last. But I have always loved the sail ships and the sea. Most o us sailors think we would have loved that life, but in reality, life was tough then. I have seen many whales at a distance, and Love being at sea.

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    1. You would enjoy the sailor part. Crazy stuff, can't imagine being a whaler by choice.

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  9. It's a shame that movies of substance like this get passed by.

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  10. Heartbreaking when a film, or a book, is negatively criticised without due consideration to the work and effort that's gone into making it. Critics should try to do better themselves.

    God bless.

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  11. Ron Howard as director is another point in its favor, I'm thinking. The horrors of whaling...

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Go ahead...it won' t hurt...I'd love to hear what you think!