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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In at the deep!
Its not often that a low budget thriller comes along that can give some of the big budget movies a run for their money. If one compares this film with the dire 'What lies beneath' then it really does win hands down, no competition, but not necessarily because of it's storyline.
In 'The Deep End', British actress Tilda Swinton (last seen in 'The Beach' and outstanding...
Published on 22 Oct 2002 by Amazon Customer

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars quick turnover
Much as I admire Tilda Swinton (has she EVER given a less-than-perfect performance?)I have to low-rate this movie. It fails to capture the "noir" essence of the 1950s movie it is loosely modelled on and creates little tension. There are major questions about the plot: would it really be so easy to dispose of a body in Lake Tahoe, its shores apparently lined with homes?;...
Published 18 months ago by R. D. O'Neill


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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In at the deep!, 22 Oct 2002
This review is from: The Deep End [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
Its not often that a low budget thriller comes along that can give some of the big budget movies a run for their money. If one compares this film with the dire 'What lies beneath' then it really does win hands down, no competition, but not necessarily because of it's storyline.
In 'The Deep End', British actress Tilda Swinton (last seen in 'The Beach' and outstanding as 'Orlando' in the Virginia Woolf-inspired film of the same name), puts in an Oscar award winning performance. She is a force to be reckoned with. Acting with honesty and is totally believable.
Swinton plays Margaret Hall a lonely wife living on the pretty shores of Lake Tahoe. Her husband is in the Navy and away at sea for much of the time leaving her to look after her three children and care for her ailing father-in-law.
Beau is the eldest teen-age son, and believes that his homosexual relationship with sleazy villain Darby Reece is a well-kept secret. Wrong! Unbeknown to Beau his mother has suspected his affair for some time, even confronting Reece at his club, to tell him to stay away. One evening Beau steals out of the house to meet Reece in the family boathouse. After an argument between the pair Reece is accidentally killed, and his body is discovered the following morning by Margaret who quickly realises that her son could be implicated. She decides to hide the bod, but it is not long before the police discover the corpse, and the story appears in the local press.
Enter hunk Goran Visnjic (star of TV show ER), a villain with a heart who initially tries to blackmail Margaret, before he is shown to relent. He was after sleaze ball Reece for money owed to him and his business partner, and has a video tape that shows Beau in an compromising position with Reece.
Visnjic slowly realises that despite the pressure put on him by his partner; his demands are not going to be met by Margaret.

Plot holes are large and rather obvious: most tellingly, why don't the police pick up on the connection between Reece and Beau, especially when Margaret had been seen at the club, where Reece worked.
However the on screen relationship between Swinton and Visnjic sizzles and the thriller is a combination of suspense and gentle love story, which works rather well.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great acting, 22 Jun 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: The Deep End [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
I have to admit I bought this dvd as I was curious to see how Goran Visnjic coped with a role so different to that of his role in ER.
I was pleasantly surprised. His character has somewhat of a farfetched role- turning from bad guy to good guy in 3 days...but he did a good job.
Tilda is an amazing actress too and I thought the two of them worked well together.
The film does not have you sat on the edge of your seat but it keeps your interest and is an enjoyable film to watch, definitely worth buying.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An intense film, 7 April 2014
This review is from: The Deep End [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
*SPOILERS* This is by far the best performance I have ever seen Tilda Swinton give. She plays Margaret, a Navy wife living in an idyllic lake-side house with her three children while her husband is away at sea. Margaret's seventeen year old son, Beau, has started hanging out at gay clubs and has begun an affair with good-looking but untrustworthy older man, Derby. There is a very graphic sex-scene between Beau and Derby so this may not be a film to watch with your Grandma.
Margaret warns Beau that Derby is a bit of a chancer but he denies any sexual relationship and clams up completely. When Derby tries to extort money from Margaret the plot takes a sinister turn and Derby ends up dead.
Handsome Alek, played Goran Visnjic, turns up at Margaret's house and attempts to blackmail her. At this point in the film the viewer really feels the stress that Margaret is under. Visnjic plays Alek as a really multi faceted man who struggles with some of the choices he has made. There is real chemistry between Alek and Margaret and the film becomes very moving in parts.
I don't want to give anything else away but I will say that the tension in this film ratchets up by the second. More and more stress is heaped on Margaret while her son, oblivious to the trouble he has caused, suspects her of having an affair with the man blackmailing her. There were some scenes where I found myself holding my breath as I was so engrossed.
This film is essentially about a mother's love for her family and the lengths she will go to keep them safe. Margaret didn't care that her son was gay, she just didn't want him to fall prey to sleazy predators. Even when faced with the most stressful situations we see her doing the laundry, getting her daughter to ballet classes and cooking a roast dinner for the family. We don't hear a thing from her husband until the very end of the film, it is Margaret's job to keep their nice middle-class existence ticking over.
This is a fantastic low-budget thriller and definitely one to watch more than once.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Deep End, 6 April 2014
This film is extremely dark but Tilda Swinton is superb. Her portrayal of a mother trying to protect her son and family from circumstances that just keeps spiralling out of control. An underrated actress imo. Her character in this is both subtle and complex, as she plays a mother, who's as tough as nails, caring, passionate, distant, vulnerable and lonely all at the same time! Superb
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Psychological Tremors At Tahoe., 15 Sep 2013
By 
Spike Owen "John Rouse Merriott Chard" (Birmingham, England.) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Deep End [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
The Deep End is directed by Scott McGehee and David Siegel, both of whom also adapting the screenplay from the novel The Blank Wall written by Elizabeth Sanxay Holding. It stars Tilda Swinton, Goran Visnjic, Jonathan Tucker, Raymond Barry and Josh Lucas. Music is by Peter Nashel and cinematography by Giles Nuttgens.

An updated take on Holding's source novel (it had been adapted by Max Ophüls as The Reckless Moment in 1949), The Deep End explores how one reckless decision in life can let the equilibrium of normalcy be invaded by dark forces and deep seated desires. Here we have the magnificent Swinton as Margaret Hall, a mother of three who finds her life spiralling out of control when she tries to keep her eldest son from being found culpable in a murder investigation. With the husband and father constantly away from their beautiful Lake Tahoe home, due to his being in the Armed Forces, Margaret is practically alone and afraid but still fiercely protective, but when blackmail walks in to her world in the shape of handsome Alek 'Al' Spera (Visnjic), there's can open, worms everywhere.

What unfolds is a tale full of classic noir staples, yet it's no cliché addled picture. McGehee and Siegel paint a pristine portrait of middle class life, but once tainted by noir it's very unlikely the protagonist will get back to that pristine world. The relationship between Margaret and Al becomes fascinating, their respective impact on each other is the beating heart of The Deep End. It all builds to a finale that has caused some division amongst the people who have seen it, but it strikes the right chords and dangles the right questions in context to the human characteristics that have been played out. Personally I would suggest further viewings are required to really get the most from this piece.

Beautifully photographed and scored, there is very little wrong here. Raymond Barry's "head" villain is a little weak, and some of the dialogue is a bit clunky, but really these are small irritants. The Deep End uses no tricks or over theatrics to grab our attention, it asks us to invest and pay attention in the principal players, because then, as the suspense and human psychological smarts come into play, is where the rewards are to be found. 8/10
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Mother's Love., 3 Sep 2013
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This review is from: The Deep End [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
This film tackles a subject many parents dread facing - having a gay child. Gripping from start to finish. Top-notch acting and a brave effort that could have failed miserably. Sensitively handled and no sleazy scenes. There is just a very brief scene that tells the viewer why the mother determines to protect her son at all costs, and that scene leaves nothing to the imagination - but it is brief and intentionally blurry.
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4.0 out of 5 stars An entertaining thriller, 13 Aug 2013
By 
Dr. H. A. Jones "Howard Jones" (Wales, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Deep End [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
Margaret Hall (Tilda Swinton) lives in a house on the shores of beautiful Lake Tahoe with her three children and an aging father-in-law. Her husband is in the U.S. Navy and is away at sea. Her son, Beau Hall (Jonathan Tucker) is enticed into a homosexual relationship with Darby Reese (Josh Lucas), sleazy owner of the nightclub The Deep End. Although Beau thinks the affair is secret, his mother Margaret already knows so she goes to see Reese to try to buy him off and leave her son alone. That same evening, Reese comes to call at the Hall household, gets into a fight with Beau, and ends up dead in the water. Unfortunately, there are others who also know about Beau's relationship with Reese. Another apparent associate of Reese's, Alek Spera (Goran Visnjic), shows up at the Hall home with a video tape of Reese and Beau together. He demands $50,000 from Margaret or threatens to send the tape to the police. But Alek is not working alone and he too has someone threatening him. This is a first-rate thriller, though I didn't find Swinton's performance totally convincing.
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5.0 out of 5 stars stimulating, 7 July 2013
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This review is from: The Deep End [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
Well written with a strong story line makes compelling watching. The characters were well defined and the narrative flowed.
Performances were excellent all round.
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3.0 out of 5 stars quick turnover, 8 Feb 2013
By 
R. D. O'Neill "henchard" (Leiston, Suffolk, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Deep End [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
Much as I admire Tilda Swinton (has she EVER given a less-than-perfect performance?)I have to low-rate this movie. It fails to capture the "noir" essence of the 1950s movie it is loosely modelled on and creates little tension. There are major questions about the plot: would it really be so easy to dispose of a body in Lake Tahoe, its shores apparently lined with homes?; would not the police easily discover the relationship between her son and the dead man. But my major criticism is that the relationship between the harassed mother and her blackmailer just doesn't convince. His conversion from cynical crook to putative lover takes place in just a few hours; he moves from threatening to expose her family secrets to, literally, dying for her in just a couple of days. The turnover is just too quick. So--3 stars for Swinton's performance, but thumbs down for the movie as a whole.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars This is essentially a re-make of "The Reckless Moment" (1949), 5 Feb 2010
This review is from: The Deep End [DVD] [2001] (DVD)
I am surprised that nobody so far has commented on the fact that "The Deep End" is a re-make of the 1949 film "The Reckless Moment" which starred James Mason and Joan Bennett. If you can catch the older film (it has been shown recently on British television), you will be rewarded by a more straight-forward telling of the tale - needless to say, no homosexual affair between the son and an "older man", rather the older daughter being mixed up with someone who looks old enough to be her father. The rest of the plot is about the same, accidental death, dumping the body in a lake, husband absent, the woman's father lives with them, being blackmailed, and so on.

As a James Mason fan, I like the older film, dodgy back projections and all, although Mason's smooth Irish accent doesn't convince. "The Deep End" is watchable enough, the homosexual twist is silly and un-necessary, Tilda Swinton looks suitably unhappy all the way through. It is nicely filmed, and best of all - you can pick the DVD up very cheap. On that basis alone, I recommend "The Deep End" - you can buy a copy dirt cheap, after having watched it, if you don't want it in your DVD library, you won't mind giving it away.
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