Liberty Theatre | Camas WA | The Whale
The Whale (R) Release Date: February 10th, 2023
Runtime: 1 hr. 57 min.
Director: Darren Aronofsky
Genres: Drama
Starring: Brendan Fraser, Sadie Sink, Ty Simpkins, Hong Chau
Nominated for 3 Academy Awards including Best Actor; Brendan Fraser (who also won the Golden Globe)

Director Darren Aronofsky’s emotional gut punch of a film seemingly does the impossible – it makes Brendan Fraser eating a candy bar one of the most harrowing, devastating shots of the year. This is due in large part to Fraser’s revelatory performance which imbues so much heart, warmth, and empathy to a lonely and complicated character. The story is simple: a deeply depressed, morbidly obese man has given up on himself but holds out hope for one last chance to connect with his estranged daughter. In that premise, Aronofsky packs in so much grief, anger, hope, judgment, and genuine human connection that by the end of the film, the tone isn’t just dark, it’s downright apocalyptic.

While the story, direction, and performances from everyone in the lean cast (including Hong Chau, Sadie Sink, Ty Simpkins, and Samantha Morton) are all excellent, this is truly a masterful showcase from Brendan Fraser. His portrayal of Charlie is the performance of a lifetime, the kind that sticks with you and creeps into your thoughts for weeks afterward. The depths of emotion he displays are captivating in a career best performance that’s right up there with the greatest of all time. We’re not being hyperbolic, he’s just that good. We’ve always loved him, but now we’re left utterly in awe.
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