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The Sea (2013)

 -  Drama  -  18 April 2014 (Ireland)
6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 101 users   Metascore: 60/100
Reviews: 4 user | 17 critic | 4 from Metacritic.com

The story of a man who returns to the sea where he spent his childhood summers in search of peace following the death of his wife.

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
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Connie Grace
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Carlo Grace
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Max Morden
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Miss Vavasour
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Anna Morden
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Claire
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Blunden
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Shopgirl Sadie
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Chloe Grace
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Jerome
Fionnuala Murphy ...
Max's Mother
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Young Tough (Mick)
Matthew Dillon ...
Young Max
Padhraig Parkinson ...
Myles Grace
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Storyline

The story of a man who returns to the sea where he spent his childhood summers in search of peace following the death of his wife.

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Drama

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18 April 2014 (Ireland)  »

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User Reviews

 
Ultimately a simple, well-made film
18 April 2014 | by (Dublin, Ireland) – See all my reviews

This film adaptation of John Banville's book by the same name, is irritatingly compelling and ultimately lacklustre in a really intriguingly enjoyable kind of way… that probably doesn't make sense right now, but by the end of the film you'll understand, or at least begin to understand – much like the plot of the film, which starts off slow but builds to a very pleasing climax.

Initially it's somewhat up and down - getting lost in its own narrative at times, with no clear intention of where the story's heading. Once we become invested in the characters they begin to reveal the humanity of the story which is a very emotional recounting of the glory of past life experiences, and the harrowing reality of the progression of life for our main character, Max Morden.

Beautiful warm and cold colour grades serve to separate the cheerful, innocent flashbacks from the much bleaker present day narrative. Every image and colour is used effectively to add to the story, and coupled with engaging performances from every actor present, this makes for a seamless viewing experience that's unique and enjoyable – although somewhat slow in its pacing at times. Where the film really struggles is in its efforts to manage the various narrative strands and how they play with each other. Unfortunately, it fails to uphold each strand all the time – sometimes leaving you wishing that the next flashback could come sooner, rather than later.

Simplicity is at the foundation of any creation, and it's from there you build on the layers to develop the project – "The Sea" skipped a few levels and tried to accomplish too much in its narrative at times, and while ultimately a simple, very well made film, it loses focus and dips too often to maintain the fantastic tone it sets for itself.


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