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      Waterland

      R 1992 1 hr. 35 min. Drama List
      53% 15 Reviews Tomatometer 61% 1,000+ Ratings Audience Score An Englishman (Jeremy Irons) dredges up his own racy past to spark his high-school history class in Pittsburgh. Read More Read Less

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      Waterland

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      Audience Reviews

      View All (36) audience reviews
      camille l Waterland conte l'histoire d'un professeur d'histoire qui, pour passionner ses élèves, décide de raconter son histoire plutôt que la grande Histoire. Les séquences les plus intéressantes sont celles où ses élèves (dont Ethan Hawke en grande gueule) rentrent dans ses souvenirs. Si le film fonctionne très bien pendant une heure, c'est lors de son dénouement qu'il s'écrase un peu, le spectateur voyant très bien où le script veut en venir, sans surprise. Jeremy Irons, Lena Headey et Ethan Hawke sont très bons, Stephen Gyllenhaal parvient à éviter le larmoyant, même si le sujet s'y prête énormément et le film ne dure que 90 minutes, pour éviter toute redite. Il n'en demeure pas moins qu'on ne peut qu'être déçu car il y avait moyen de tutoyer les sommets. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 03/31/23 Full Review Audience Member I usually don't mind lugubrious movies with Jeremy Irons in them, but this one is a bit too waterlogged even for me. A fen of stagnant waters? As a 63-year-ol teacher, perhaps it's the theme of a burnt out teacher that doesn't work for me. The device of having the teacher take his students on a tour through his past life is elegant, but somehow the whole is less than its parts. I'm going to read the book for a book group, so I hope I'll like it better. Rated 2.5 out of 5 stars 02/24/23 Full Review Audience Member A lost gem that I'm glad i actually watched in class today. Everyone who knows me knows that I am such a sucker for dramas and Waterland is no exception. This movie tells the tale of a high school teacher in 1974 that tells his history class the story of his past which represents why storytelling and history is still relevant today. Tom Crick is the name of the professor and he not only can't get his students involved, but his wife is slowly slipping away and is becoming a danger to others. The film is beautifully shot and the story is so so touching. I really enjoyed this movie, but it still does have some flaws. The scenes of the teacher telling his story and out of nowhere his class is there with him and interacting with people from the past was a little far fetched and took away from the tone of the film. Ethan Hawke's character Matthew Price seemed to kind of befriend the teacher too easily when he was being such a bad ass in the beginning as well it woulda been nice to see the character development happen a bit stronger there. Overall, i highly recommend checking this out still if your a drama fan! Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 02/04/23 Full Review Audience Member Based on the novel by Graham Swift - a wonderful British author - <i>Waterland</i> tells the story of a history teacher who tells his students as much about himself as he does history. What is strong about the novel is what is weak about the film. The novel explores a post-modern conception of history that suggests we get stuck in these endless spirals of ironic happenstance, and in order to understand it all, we must go back, and in order to understand what we see when we go back, we must go back farther and farther. There's a little bit of this in the film, but certainly not enough for the audience to understand Swift's point. Instead of a complex exploration of post-modern theory and history, we're left with a fairly basic film about a man dealing with the events of his childhood. And how does that story fair? Not badly. It has its moments of affecting drama, both in the present and the past, but it's devoid of any grand significance. Additionally, the ending is too intentionally vague. We're given to understand certain conclusions about these characters' futures, but we can't figure out how they get from the point A, when the credits roll, to the point B, which we are told will happen. What is more, the plot-line between Crick and Price ends in a disappointing cliche. Overall, I think I should like this film less than I do. In the end, I think the source material, Swift's book, is so good, and the performances by Irons, Cusack, and Warnock were good enough to make up for the failings of the screenwriter and director. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 02/26/23 Full Review Audience Member Jeremy Irons stars as Tom Crick, a morose (typical Irons) history teacher who's past is full of tragedies and oddly grim experiences. He becomes nervous after being unable of successfully teaching his students about the French revolution, so he starts sharing his painful experiences about his teenage days. The most interesting part about the plot is how he describes his past in the fenlands of England, and storytelling takes an interesting turn where there's a point in which the line between present and past blurs, showing Jeremy Irons with his students as if they were going on a field trip through Irons's story. Ethan Hawke plays a rebellious student who begins questioning Crick's stories and tells him that he just wants to keep the students interested. Another key character in the story is Tom Crick's wife Mary, who shared much of Tom's experiences in the past to the point where it's shown that they used to have sex in an abandoned mill. Something crucial happens that also involves Tom's mentally handicapped brother leading to a tragic chapter in Tom's life. Mary becomes unable to bear a baby and that troubles her to the point of stealing a baby. Waterland is a touching film, the events are shown carefully through Crick's stories. Everything that happens contributes to Crick's pain and it's not hard to see why. In Crick's stories we see how he begins as a carefree, joyful teenager and slowly becomes depressed because of the events told in the stories. It is a very recommendable film, even though it has it's flaws. The developing of the plot is very original and interesting because of its careful structure, and the performances are excellent, even better than the plot itself, Jeremy Irons holds everything together pretty well with his performance and in the end the viewer really feels sad for Irons's character. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 02/17/23 Full Review Audience Member Jeremy Irons stars as Tom Crick, a morose (typical Irons) history teacher who's past is full of tragedies and oddly grim experiences. He becomes nervous after being unable of successfully teaching his students about the French revolution, so he starts sharing his painful experiences about his teenage days. The most interesting part about the plot is how he describes his past in the fenlands of England, and storytelling takes an interesting turn where there's a point in which the line between present and past blurs, showing Jeremy Irons with his students as if they were going to a field trip through Irons's story. Ethan Hawke plays a rebellious student who begins questioning Crick's stories and tells him that he just wants to keep the students interested. Another key character in the story is Tom Crick's wife Mary, who shared much of Tom's experiences in the past to the point where it's shown that they used to have sex in an abandoned mill. Something crucial happens that also involves Tom's mentally handicapped brother leading to a tragic chapter in Tom's life. Mary becomes unable to bear a baby and that troubles her to the point of stealing a baby. Waterland is a touching film, the events are shown carefully through Crick's stories. Everything that happens contributes to Crick's pain and it's not hard to see why. In Crick's stories we see how he begins as a carefree, joyful teenager and slowly becomes depressed because of the events told in the stories. It is a very recommendable film, even though it has it's flaws. The developing of the plot is very original and interesting because of its careful structure, and the performances are excellent, even better than the plot itself, Jeremy Irons holds everything together pretty well with his performance and in the end the viewer really feels sad for Irons's character. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 02/13/23 Full Review Read all reviews Post a rating

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      Critics Reviews

      View All (15) Critics Reviews
      Anthony Lane Independent (UK) Incest, drowning, teenage sex on a train: it's all here, but none of it clings to your mind. Jan 4, 2018 Full Review Variety Staff Variety A talented but terminally parched piece of literary cinema. Feb 23, 2012 Full Review Time Out It's a brave endeavour, held together by Robert Elswit's poetic photography, and by Irons' authoritative impression of the crumbling desperation behind the chalk-dusted facade of a pensive history man. Jan 26, 2006 Full Review Owen McNally Hartford Courant Screenwriter Peter Prince's adaptation of Graham Swift's much praised novel has a keen surreal edge that slices through barriers separating the past and the present. Mar 4, 2019 Full Review Vanessa Letts The Spectator The odd thing about Waterland is that despite the extreme evens it depicts -- murder, incest, betrayal, drowning, abortion, baby-snatching, madness, job losses etc. -- it seems rather tame. Jul 24, 2018 Full Review Emanuel Levy EmanuelLevy.Com A flawed adaptation of Swift's novel, though the acting of Jeremy Irons and others is good. Rated: C+ Jul 15, 2011 Full Review Read all reviews

      Movie Info

      Synopsis An Englishman (Jeremy Irons) dredges up his own racy past to spark his high-school history class in Pittsburgh.
      Director
      Stephen Gyllenhaal
      Production Co
      British Screen Productions, Channel Four Films
      Rating
      R
      Genre
      Drama
      Original Language
      English
      Release Date (Streaming)
      Nov 17, 2016
      Box Office (Gross USA)
      $1.1M
      Sound Mix
      Surround, Stereo
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