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Trapped in the Sea 

The Deep Blue Sea showcases Weisz's natural talent

click to enlarge Talk about a nice afternoon.
  • Talk about a nice afternoon.

A portrait of a woman trapped—by her feelings, her choices and her times—The Deep Blue Sea is by turns claustrophobic, overly mannered and moving, overcoming its shortcomings with a typically powerful performance from Rachel Weisz. The wife of a judge (Simon Russell Beale) in post-war London, her Hester Collyer walks away from a passionless marriage, smitten with former RAF pilot (Tom Hiddleston) who, despite the erotic connection, isn't nearly as devoted to her as she is to him. British director Terence Davies (Distant Voices, Still Lives) adapts Terence Rattigan's play, making little effort to free it from its stagey origins and ladling on obtrusive strings, heavy-handed framing and melodrama with a capital Meh. But with Weisz at its tremulous centre, scenes opposite Hiddleston and Beale provide a welcome naturalism, slicing through the self-consciousness.

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