In the Heart of the Sea

Critics Consensus

The admirably old-fashioned In the Heart of the Sea boasts thoughtful storytelling to match its visual panache, even if it can't claim the depth or epic sweep to which it so clearly aspires.



Total Count: 233


Audience Score

User Ratings: 40,430
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Movie Info

In the winter of 1820, the New England whaling ship Essex was assaulted by something no one could believe: a whale of mammoth size and will, and an almost human sense of vengeance. The real-life maritime disaster would inspire Herman Melville's Moby-Dick. But that told only half the story. "In the Heart of the Sea" reveals the encounter's harrowing aftermath, as the ship's surviving crew is pushed to their limits and forced to do the unthinkable to stay alive. Braving storms, starvation, panic and despair, the men will call into question their deepest beliefs, from the value of their lives to the morality of their trade, as their captain searches for direction on the open sea and his first mate still seeks to bring the great whale down. (C) Warner Bros


Chris Hemsworth
as Owen Chase
Benjamin Walker
as Captain George Pollard
Cillian Murphy
as Second Mate Matthew Joy
Ben Whishaw
as Novelist Herman Melville
Brendan Gleeson
as Tom Nickerson (Age 30 Years)
Jordi Molla
as Captain of Ship Archimedes
Charlotte Riley
as Peggy Chase
Frank Dillane
as Henry Coffin
Paul Anderson (XVIII)
as Caleb Chappel
Michelle Fairley
as Mrs. Nickerson
Joseph Mawle
as Benjamin Lawrence
Donald Sumpter
as Paul Mason
Andrew Crayford
as Customs Officer
Gary Beadle
as William Bond
Edward Ashley
as Barzillai Ray
Osy Ikhile
as Richard Peterson
Sam Keeley
as Ramsdell
Nicholas Jones
as Pollard Senior
Richard Bremmer
as Benjamin Fuller
Nordin Aoures
as First Mate
Santi Lopez
as Second Mate
Harry Jardine
as Rescue Ship Lookout
Jamie Michie
as Rescue Ship Captain
Andy Wareham
as John Sanborn
Frans Huber
as Nye (Sailor)
Mark Southworth
as Francis Easton
Christopher Keegan
as Shareholder
Stephanie Jacob
as Tally Woman
Luca Tosi
as Wright
Martin Wilde
as Benjamin Gardner
Michael Cronin
as Quaker Prayer Leader
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Critic Reviews for In the Heart of the Sea

All Critics (233) | Top Critics (48) | Fresh (101) | Rotten (132)

  • The huge, whale-sized problem is that Howard can't decide if this is dark, adult fare or a rollicking tale of derring-do.

    Dec 27, 2015 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • What remains is an opportunity for an intense, Jaws-like thalassophobic nightmare, squandered.

    Dec 21, 2015 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • Howard is a director who believes in strong, primary-colour storytelling, with plenty of uncomplicated emotion. Yet this story is oddly more subtle than you might think ...

    Dec 17, 2015 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • The vintage grotesquerie of the regular old whaling process turns out to be more disturbing than the dark adventures that are In the Heart of the Sea's reason for being.

    Dec 16, 2015
  • Warner Bros. would have been better off sticking with the film's original March release date and selling it as a horror movie.

    Dec 14, 2015 | Rating: 1.5/4 | Full Review…
  • If you want a Ron Howard movie about a man obsessed with a creature from the deep, "In the Heart of the Sea," sadly, is not the place to start. Try "Splash."

    Dec 14, 2015 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for In the Heart of the Sea

  • Jan 09, 2017
    As epic as this film wishes it was, nothing actually happens of note..
    Marcus W Super Reviewer
  • Jan 02, 2017
    It's a really good movie. It had a good storyline with good actors. It had a lot of excitement - it kept you engaged. It's a heartwarming movie that kept you engaged and hoping that the first mate and the boy would survive but you weren't sure and the longer the movie went on the less likely it seemed that any would survive. You knew that the boy survived, because an older version of him is telling the story but you didn't know who, if anybody else, survived. It showed how perilous times could make man do whatever was necessary to survive. It also showed how people from two different classes could form a bond based on truth.
    Jim P Super Reviewer
  • Sep 20, 2016
    Anthony L Super Reviewer
  • Jun 20, 2016
    Really good story and acting. Don't understand why the reviews for this are so mediocre. This is a solid film.
    Stephen S Super Reviewer

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