Rachel Weisz is heartbreakingly good as the tormented heroine at the heart of Terence Davies’ sensitive adaptation of Terence Rattigan’s 1952 play The Deep Blue Sea, about a woman caught between dull respectability and dangerous passion.
Weisz’s Hester Collyer has left her husband, Simon Russell Beale’s high court judge, for a dashing former Battle of Britain pilot (Tom Hiddleston), but the impossibility of sustaining their tempestuous romance has driven her to the depths of suicidal despair.
Taking its tone from the pinched and drab mood of bombed-out, ration-squeezed post-war London, Davies’ film is far from cheery, but if you don’t mind the slow pace and can overlook the director’s trademark mannerisms (including the almost obligatory pub singalongs), there’s much to admire, not least the superb acting, with Hiddleston’s flighty lover and Russell Beale’s earth-bound spouse proving perfect foils to Weisz’s heartsick heroine.
Released on DVD & Blu-ray on Monday 2nd April by Artificial Eye.
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