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Beyond the Sea (2004)

6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 11,321 users   Metascore: 46/100
Reviews: 244 user | 114 critic | 35 from Metacritic.com

A swooning study of "Mack the Knife" singer Bobby Darin (Spacey) specifically, and his relationship with his wife Sandra Dee (Bosworth).

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Title: Beyond the Sea (2004)

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

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William Ullrich ...
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Gary Whelan ...
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1st Assistant Director
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Storyline

Consummate entertainer Bobby Darin (1936-1973) is making a movie about his life. He's volatile, driven by the love of performing, ambition, perfectionism, and belief that he's living on borrowed time. He begins in the Bronx: a fatherless lad learning music and dance from his mom. His career starts slowly, then "Splish Splash" puts him at the top of the charts and on "Bandstand." He wants to be an entertainer, not a pop star, so he aims for the Copacabana; then it's on to the movies, where he meets and marries Sandra Dee. After, it's balancing career, health, marriage and family life, balances he doesn't always keep. Throughout, conversations with his boyhood self give him perspective. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

BOBBY DARIN . . . in the era of cool he was the soundtrack. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some strong language and a scene of sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Language:

Release Date:

26 November 2004 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Bobby Darin Biopic  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$23,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$29,869 (New Zealand) (17 November 2006)

Gross:

$29,869 (New Zealand) (17 November 2006)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The James Toback draft which followed an earlier draft by Paul Attanasio concentrated on Sandra Dee's alcoholism and childhood molestation by her stepfather. This draft was then given to Lorenzo Carcaterra. His draft, the last before Warner Bros. and Barry Levinson left the project, was 164 pages long. See more »

Goofs

When Bobby Darin is campaigning with Robert F. Kennedy, Kennedy has a Secret Service detail. Presidential hopefuls were not entitled to a Secret Service detail. That was changed after RFK's murder. See more »

Quotes

Bobby Darin: It's OK, I'm not gonna hurt you. Watch. My momma used to tell me a story when I was a kid that in the Middle Ages, one of the knights in King Arthur's court, he laid down his sword between himself and Guinevere, and he promised that he would never cross over to the other side.
Sandra Dee: Really?
Bobby Darin: I am laying down this sword between us. That's my side of the bed, and that's yours, and I will never cross over. Ever. I don't care if we don't touch for a thousand nights. Only you can cross over to my side. ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the end credits we see Kevin Spacey performing another song. In the background there are lines moving to the music. See more »

Connections

References Gidget (1959) See more »

Soundtracks

Charade
(1963)
Written by Henry Mancini
Lyrics by Johnny Mercer
Published by WB Music Corp., The Johnny Mercer Foundation/Universal-Northern Music Co., Universal - MCA Music Publ. ADO Universal Studios,
Inc./Northridge Music Co.
Performed by Kevin Spacey & The John Wilson Orchestra
See more »

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User Reviews

Beyond the Sea is as much about Kevin Spacey as it is Bobby Darin.
17 December 2004 | by (Columbus, Ohio) – See all my reviews

If you can overcome what I can't, you will enjoy Beyond the Sea: Kevin Spacey is too old to play Bobby Darin, the 50's pop singer who died from long-term effects of rheumatic heart at 37. At times Spacey is playing Darin in his twenties when no matter how you tighten and pin Spacey's face, he is still a 44-year old man with all the lovely creases and bags time awards. The dislocation bothered me so that I couldn't fully appreciate what is otherwise an outstanding performance.

But then Spacey is the director, so he has to be responsible for miscasting (or put another way, why didn't he do this 10 years ago when no one on this planet could have denied that he is the perfect Darin?). As John Irving said in "My Movie Business" about the choice of actors, "Looks do count." Although others have criticized Beyond the Sea as a Spacey vanity project, I found his performance believable and engaging with style appropriate to the best lounge singers of the time (Sinatra included) and spot-on perfect for Darin, if not better than the original. I've heard Spacey is touring with his band to promote this biopic; I'd go just to enjoy Spacey as a gifted singer.

The only moments to get past the many Darin songs and into his life are those centering on the influence of his "mother" (Brenda Blethyn, "Secrets and Lies") and his marriage to Sandra Dee (Kate Bosworth). In the former, Blethyn does a bit of singing and dancing to show that Spacey is not the only multi-talent on the set. In the latter, the pop- culture lite of their romance is handled believably, as one might try to do David Beckham and his spicey love, a marriage just a vacuous and emblematic as the Darins'.

The irony of Sandra's mother wanting her to go after Rock Hudson rather than Darin brings laughter, intended for sure, as the audience is aware of Spacey's contending with rumors about being gay. Even jokes about Darin's toupee resonate with Spacey's own rugs in real life and for this part. Spacey doesn't take himself as seriously as critics do (witness an early scene where in the framing device of Darin filming his own life, he is accused of being too old to play himself).

The conjunction of subject and biographer is challenging at best. Paul Murray Kendall in "The Art of Biography" says, "On the trail of another man, the biographer must put up with finding himself at every turn: any biography uneasily shelters an autobiography within it." In that sense, Beyond the Sea is as much about Kevin Spacey as it is Bonny Darin.

This biopic ranks third next to Ray and De-Lovely; in another less-full year, it would be the best.


78 of 111 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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What's with Spacey? He's WAY WAY TOO old jasebotchford
could kevin have been more fit for the part!? n1ckwo1f
Kevin was the perfect actor for Bobby Darin!! auralite1946
Really, really wanted to like this movie wildgarlickydays
this movie blows pretentiousbore
Postmodern Storytelling CopaceticOpus
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