The Weight of Water

Release Date: November 1, 2002
Limited release

Missing Madonna.

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This film is based on the novel of the same title by Anita Shreve, which is in turn based on a true story. The movie stars Sean Penn, Catherine McCormack, and Elizabeth Hurley.

The original story is based on a pair of murders that occurred in 1873 on Smuttynose Island off the coast of New Hampshire. Two women were strangled, and one had been hit with an ax. There was one woman who survived, and she accused a man named Louis Wagner. He was put on trial, convicted of the murders based on circumstantial evidence, and hanged in 1875. Wagner maintained his innocence to the end, which prompted numerous theories about the murders.

The movie is about a photojournalist (McCormack) and her husband (Penn) who sail to the island to photograph the site of the murders. They are accompanied on the trip by the husband's brother and his girlfriend (Hurley). The film tries to draw comparisons between the past and modern-day events. The trip starts out well, but ends up with strong feelings of passion, jealousy, and fear.

This film was made in 2000 and had its world premiere at the 2000 Toronto International Film Festival. It has been shown at quite a few film festivals since then, but has been in limbo with regards to its regular theatrical release. This may be due to the fact that many reviews of this film have been extremely negative. The studio has apparently made quite a few edits to the film's original version. Hopefully, if it comes to a theater near you, this will make it a worthwhile way to spend your entertainment dollar. (Marty Doskins/BOP)

Vital statistics for The Weight of Water
Main Cast Catherine McCormack, Sarah Polley, Sean Penn, Josh Lucas, Elizabeth Hurley
Supporting Cast Ciaran Hinds, Ulrich Thomsen, Anders W. Berthelsen, Katrin Cartlidge
Director Kathryn Bigelow
Screenwriter Alice Arlen, Christopher Kyle
Distributor Lions Gate
  • Nominee, Golden Seashell, 2000 San Sebasti├ín International Film Festival

Awards page for The Weight of Water
Talent in red has entry in The Big Picture



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