The Green Sea Movie Review
Written by Sean M. Sanford
Released by Reel 2 Reel
Written and directed by Randal Plunkett
2021, 104 minutes, Not Rated
Released on July 7th, 2021
Katharine Isabelle as Simone
Hazel Doupe as Kid
Jenny Dixon as Margo
Dermot Ward as Justin
Rainbows are trippy as fuck, dude. Have you ever really thought about that? I mean, come on. Water and light dance to create some abstract arch of the foundations who themselves team up as phantoms of every pigment that builds order in the world as we see it. Plus, miniature Irishmen are alleged to live amongst them who will either hook you up with a pot of gold, or star in a horror movie franchise.
Life is sometimes like a rainbow in this way. You watch a person long enough, and the building blocks that make them who they are will eventually reveal some aspect to their makeup. Sometimes the person is kind of an asshole, and their makeup is, therefore, shall we say, not traditionally rainbow-esque.
Meet Simone, the main character in The Green Sea. She’s introduced with a demeanor that, paired with her environment, creates an arch that isn’t what I would say resembles a rainbow’s ambiance. She’s a drunk who hates herself, so there’s that. But the cut of her jib, played masterfully by the hugely underrated actor Katharine Isabelle, suggests that there are levels upon levels behind what made her the way she is. And the longer you stare, the more a puke-tinted “rainbow” begins to emerge.
She’s a day-drunk fiction writer who lives alone in a small Irish town, where the only thing more depressing than the omnipotent cloud-cover is the state of her home. Piles of soiled refuse pockmark every landing in her otherwise massive and beautiful abode deep in the woods. She lives alone and is troubled by visions which begin as disturbing flashes of rage, sorrow, and blood, but take shape more and more as the film proceeds.
She looks intent to stagnate her solitude. But then she meets a girl.
Driving home one night while nursing a bottle of Vodka, Simone I-Know-What-You-Did-Last-Summer’s a girl on a lonely road in the middle of nowhere. Minus the death. So, she takes her home and has a mixed reaction when the girl wakes up the next morning relatively unharmed. Therein begins a relationship where they are at times sworn enemies, other times friends(ish), and often displaying the co-habitation of a mother and her child. This nameless victim of vehicular abuse refuses to ignore some of the more interesting items found in Simone’s house, and in asking about them, makes it so Simone can no longer shy from such artifacts of her past. Like the room that is full of musical instruments, or the persona named Sudden Chaos, who is mentioned by a mechanic who’s working on Simone’s car.
The longer Simone has this girl around, looking at her life, the more things begin to take shape, and maybe make at least a little bit of sense. Including some of the horrific shit that Simone has flashbacks of and seems desperate to forget.
The acting in this movie is one of the things that really got me. Katharine Isabelle, who I’ve had a deep appreciation for since I saw the werewolf movie (itself massively underrated) Ginger Snaps, plays Simone with such rancorous honesty that I noticed myself forgetting that she was acting at all. The same can be said for Hazel Doupe, who plays the nameless girl who was plowed into by Simone.
The cinematography and overall demeanor of the film bring depth to its drawl. The way the shots move do well to represent the emotions shown on screen; when Simone is having one of her uncouth flashbacks or is drunk as a skunk, the shots will swim, jerk, and tilt to make it feel like we are experiencing her own environment, and all the abstract chaos therein.
Full of brilliant quips like “Happiness is a dickhead” (said by Simone of course), The Green Sea is well-written and tells a story that creates many tiny rainbows in its otherwise drab projection. It’s a bit of a stretch to call this movie traditional horror, but the emotions and the events therein are definitely scary as hell. Even without the puke-colored rainbows.
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