In the winter of 1820, the New England whaling ship Essex was assaulted by something no one could believe: a whale of mammoth size and will, and an almost human sense of vengeance. The real-life maritime disaster would inspire Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick. But that told only half the story. “Heart of the Sea” reveals the encounter’s harrowing aftermath, as the ship’s surviving crew is pushed to their limits and forced to do the unthinkable to stay alive. Braving storms, starvation, panic and despair, the men will call into question their deepest beliefs, from the value of their lives to the morality of their trade, as their captain searches for direction on the open sea and his first mate still seeks to bring the great whale down.Wikipedia
In the Heart of the Sea Reviews
Although less surefooted when the drama moves to land, the film benefits from brisk pacing, and from Howard’s skill at finding stories of human conflict in big spectacle productions. It's a horror story of a different kind.
In the Heart of the Sea works as a survival drama, a rip-roaring adventure and even a monster movie, but what it really accomplishes, like Interstellar, is to remind us that once upon a time, humanity was unflinching in its thirst for discovery.
...this is definitely a gripping tale that's worth watching.
There are portions in this film which keep you completely engrossed and involved and there are those that remain listless , as though unanchored to a steady rhythm or pace. Despite the great adventure at the centre of it all, there's not much awe, surprise or suspense to be had here. And it's all to do with the inconsistent scripting and helming. While effects are top notch and visually appealing there's very little thrill in the experience. And that for an adventure/disaster movie is a great dampener.
In the Heart of the Sea is exactly the kind of sentimental populist Hollywoodised claptrap that Howard is famous for and most of it grates more than entertains. After Life of Pi, which so beautifully established the metaphor for cannibalism on a stowaway raft, and the first act of Unbroken which captured a true story of being cast away at sea and then becoming a prisoner of war, In the Heart of the Sea seems like an unnecessary add on to an already consumed meal.
Don't miss the trials and tribulations of these seamen. This film is definitely worth a watch.
...a beautifully made film that shows us humanity at its best and worst. Featuring commendable performances, breathtaking visuals and a noteworthy script, it is a must watch this weekend.
Historical inaccuracies aren't new or undesirable to Ron Howard (A Beautiful Mind is a bare shadow of Slyvia Nasser's book). His strengths usually lie in bending real incidents to suit his drama requirements. If he'd stuck just to thrills or just to drama, the film would have been greatly satisfying. However, he attempts more here and ends up with less. A pity.
The film is watchable as a big screen, popcorn-cola experience, but it fails to go beyond a plain sea movie, being unable to dig into the rich and dense material of the original story.
After some dubious-looking computer-generated backdrops in the opening scenes set in Nantucket, the special effects team kicks into gear once the Essex enters the water. The battle between the whale and the humans has the unfortunate effect of creating empathy for the mammal, which appears rightfully outraged at the repeated attacks on members of its pod. After the mammal has done its work, the story floats as aimlessly as the castaways, counting down to the inevitable return home. The cast performs efficiently, but they are dwarfed in every way possible by Moby Dick’s inspiration.
Not Ron Howard's best by a long shot. Still, a reasonably robust high-seas adventure even though it's a little all over the place.