THE WHALE (R)
1 hour, 57 minutes
Nominated for three Academy Awards: Actor in a Leading Role (Brendan Fraser), Actress in a Supporting Role (Hong Chau), and Best Achievement in Makeup & Hairstyling, The Whale is about a reclusive English teacher suffering from severe obesity attempts to reconnect with his estranged teenage daughter for one last chance at redemption.
Human agony of both the physical and emotional kind is a Darren Aronofsky staple, but The Whale, which is driven by shattering work from Brendan Fraser as a 600-pound teacher eating himself to death, pushes that theme to extremes while remaining steadfastly within the borders of naturalism. Adapted by Samuel D. Hunter from his play, the intense chamber drama never disguises its stage roots but transcends them with the grace and compassion of the writing and the layers of pain and despair, love and dogged hope peeled back in the central performance. Fraser makes us see beyond the alarming appearance to the deeply affecting heart of this broken man.
“The Whale is a moving, enveloping film that, while it very rarely departs from its stage origins, reaches the heights of emotional drama.”
—David Stratton, The Australian
"Fraser delivers the best work of his career."
—Richard Roeper, Chicago Sun-Times
ADA-mandated Audio Descriptive (AD) and Closed Caption (CC) devices available for the visually and hearing-impaired. Inquire at the concession stand.