In the Heart of the Sea, review: ‘Awash with second rate CGI’

09:23 18 December 2015

In the Heart of the Sea. Picture: Warner Bros. Pictures

In the Heart of the Sea. Picture: Warner Bros. Pictures

Archant

This true story of the whaling disaster that inspired Moby Dick is too clearly a star vehicle for Chris Hemsworth, says Michael Joyce.

In the Heart of the Sea is a telling of the true story – the sinking of the whaling ship The Essex in 1820 – that inspired Moby Dick. The film opens with Melville (Ben Whishaw) arriving at the home of the last remaining survivor (Brendan Gleeson) and bribing him to reveal the full truth of the story.

We know that a great white whale is likely to pop up in this narrative but as the film opens it looks more like a rerun of Mutiny On The Bounty. Owen Chase (Chris Hemsworth) is an experienced but lowly-born seaman who had been promised the captaincy on his next voyage but finds himself forced to be first mate to the inexperienced Captain Pollard (Walker), a member of the family that runs the company.

Just as Chase and the crew quickly come to mistrust and resent his poor leadership, the viewer will quickly realise that this film isn’t up to the task of conveying the story properly. It is awash with second rate CGI and poorly executed action sequences. Your heart sinks early on when Hemsworth is having his off-to-sea talk with his pregnant wife against a clearly artificial backdrop. After that, there is barely a convincing moment in the film. Even the big action sequences are muddled through in a blur of quick edits and incoherent dialogue. How much of this is down to budgetary limitation is unclear but it is all very disappointing.

It is also too bluntly a star vehicle for Hemsworth. He makes a great Thor or James Hunt, but only seems to be effective playing overblown, parody heroes.

Rating: 2/5 stars

Latest Hampstead & Highgate Stories

Yesterday, 19:41
Is Harry Styles planning to swap Hampstead for the West Country?

Since he bought the Heath-side property the One Direction heartthrob has had teenagers (and adults who really should know better) camped outside.

Yesterday, 18:00
Groundhog Day at the Old Vic. Picture. Manuel Harlan.

The high-speed lyrical wit and richly layered variations means it will – appropriately enough – reward endless repeat trips.

Yesterday, 19:30
Spurs Ladies defender Renee Hector. Pic: Tottenham Hotspur via Getty Images

Spurs Ladies made a strong start to their FA Women’s Premier League campaign on Sunday, beating Swindon Town 4-1 – and summer signing Renee Hector feels they could have been even more prolific.

Yesterday, 19:21
A five-bedroom flat in a period conversion on Lyndhurst Terrace would make a great family home

This week we’ve found a five-bedroom maisonette fit for a Horror film; a first-time buyer flat in prime Highgate and a very unmodernised studio ripe for renovation.

Yesterday, 13:15
Highgate captain Jake Sharland was dismissed for a duck in their defeat to Brondesbury on Saturday. Pic: Max Flego

Highgate skipper Jake Sharland expects no favours from neighbours Hornsey when his side attempt to clinch survival by beating them in Saturday’s derby showdown.

Yesterday, 12:20
The inquest into the death of Dmitrijs Makejevs heard that he had tried to stop using drugs but fellt a sense of

The drug-related death of a young, homeless man was at first thought to be suspicious – but an inquest heard that marks on his face were probably caused by rats.

Yesterday, 12:14
Brondesbury's Buddy Mason (left) celebrates after dismissing Highgate's Chris Arul at Harman Drive. Pic: Max Flego

James Overy believes Brondesbury have proved they are on the right track even if they miss out on promotion to the Premier Division of the Middlesex County League this weekend.

Yesterday, 11:30
Daniel Harkin, Greene & Co. Crouch End

Daniel Harkin is a born and bred north Londoner and a freshly mineted sales negotiator at Greene & Co.

Most read Hampstead & Highgate etcetera

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now