Ron Howard’s In the Heart of the Sea is nothing that we haven’t seen before, least of all from the man himself – moral characters, personality clashes, a dramatic score and attempts to survive the impossible.

The refreshingly non-American cast adds gravitas to what is, essentially, a nineteenth century disaster movie, but a key ingredient of this premise isn’t always up to scratch: whale-wise, it’s plain sailing, but there are crushingly obvious green screen moments elsewhere.

The film is also hamstrung by its famous literary heritage – most will be keenly aware of the outcome – but there is some welcome smaller detail.

In the Heart of the Sea doesn’t break new ground, but it’s relatively diverting. There’s satisfaction in watching newer British talent like Holland and Charlotte Riley in another international blockbuster.



CAST: Chris Hemsworth, Benjamin Walker, Cillian Murphy, Ben Whishaw, Brendan Gleeson, Tom Holland, Frank Dillane

DIRECTOR: Ron Howard

WRITER: Charles Leavitt (screenplay & story), Rick Jaffa & Amanda Silver (story), Nathaniel Philbrick (book)

SYNOPSIS: The story of the whaling ship Essex and the colossal and vengeful whale the crew had the misfortune to encounter.