Deep Water is an incoherent film that loses itself that does not hold its weight throughout its messy script.
Normally there are a lot of films that fall under my personal radar at times. There are exceptions to the rule and one of them is when I get sick. That was the case when I was able to sit down and watch Adrian Lyne’s Deep Water. The genre of erotic thrillers is some of my favorites dating back to films like Brian De Palma’s Femme Fatale. Also, the film includes two actors who I am big fans of, so easily this should be on my radar to consume? Well, I relatively felt nothing when the trailer for the film was released. Therefore, I bit the bullet and put myself through this new Hulu release.
Deep Water is directed by Adrian Lyne and written by Zach Helm and Sam Levinson. The film is based on the novel of the same name by Patricia Highsmith. The film stars Ben Affleck and Ana de Armas as a married couple who have an open marriage. The cast also includes Grace Jenkins, Dash Mihok, Rachel Blanchard, Kristen Connoly, Jacob Elordi, and Lil Rel Howery. The film was originally supposed to release two years ago but after two delays, it finally arrived in homes in the US via Hulu.
In Deep Water, Victor and Melinda Van Allen, played by Ben Affleck and Ana de Armas look to open their marriage to other lovers in order to fix their loss of love. Victor lets Melinda take on other loves outside of him as long as it does not end up in her leaving her family. Their daughter, Trixie, is a normal little girl who does not understand the situation at hand. Most of the time, open relationships work and should not be so taboo when all parties are consensual. That does not seem to be the case in this picture because some of Melinda’s lovers end up disappearing or dead. The film unravels as it decodes a murder plot and the troubling aspects of love.
What can I say about Deep Water that has not already been shouted from the rooftops of film twitter? Deep Water does not work as a psychological thriller or a drama. Adrian Lyne tries his best to direct a film out of a poorly written script. The characters feel so one-dimensional and some of the dialogue leaves one puzzled instead of intrigued. I found the cinematography to be exquisite with its beautiful use of lighting and excellent camera movements. Sadly, filmmaking is not just a visual format and a good movie does not include just beautiful photography. Its pace drags itself across metaphorical concrete as it struggles to wrap itself up. Once it reaches the final shot, there is not much catharsis to feel. The performances are fine but both actors have been in better work. The execution could work more if there was a better script for Lyne to direct. The movie misses its mark by a long shot and ultimately felt like a chore to get through.
Watch Deep Water on Hulu in the US and Amazon Prime Video internationally.