The Water Diviner

2015

The Water Diviner (2015)

TOMATOMETER

Critic Consensus: The Water Diviner finds Russell Crowe on somewhat uncertain footing as a director, but he's rescued by a strong performance from himself in the leading role.

AUDIENCE SCORE


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Movie Info

An Australian man travels to Turkey after the Battle of Gallipoli to try and locate his three missing sons.

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Cast

Isabel Lucas
as Natalia
Jai Courtney
as Lt. Colonel Hughes
Yilmaz Erdogan
as Major Hasan
Salih Kalyon
as Dr. Ibrahim
Ben Norris
as Young Henry
Aidan Smith
as Young Edward
Damon Herriman
as Father McIntyre
Dan Wylie
as Captain Brindley
Max Benitz
as Lieutenant
Charles Allan
as British Soldier (Arrival Hall)
Ali Akdeniz
as Turkish Official (Arrival Hall)
Robert Mammone
as Colonel Demergelis
Deniz Akdeniz
as Iman 1919
Emrah Aksu
as Boy Soldier
Jack Randall
as British Clerk
Zev Eleftheriou
as Train Driver
David Oliver
as British Soldier (Topkapi)
Asena Gündüz
as Omer's Daugher #1
Aleyna Gündüz
as Omer's Daughter #2
Abdullah Eraslan
as Distinguished Turkish Man
Mustafa Özlük
as Turkish Band - Sunnet
Serdar Ali Sagin
as Turkish Band - Sunnet
Ediz Nidai
as Turkish Band - Sunnet
Jason Honeychurch
as Young Veteran
George Ogilvie
as Blade Knife Sharpener
Gazi Yalcin
as Turkish Band (Gallipoli)
Brad Turner
as Turkish Band (Gallipoli)
Fabian Hevia
as Turkish Band (Gallipoli)
Varlam Nikoladze
as Old Pleasant
Nigar Alkan Sen
as Woman in Village
Muammer Er
as Villager
Ali Akkus
as Villager
Mustafa Konukcu
as Whirling Dervish Leader
Mehmet Emin Kabakci
as Whirling Dervish
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News & Interviews for The Water Diviner

Critic Reviews for The Water Diviner

All Critics (147) | Top Critics (33)

Indeed, this is the 51-year-old Crowe's first time as a movie director, but he's hardly a novice actor stepping behind the camera for some sort of vanity project.

Apr 26, 2015 | Rating: 4.0

It's clear that Russell Crowe has poured his heart and soul into the historical romance The Water Diviner, his first feature as a director. If only the film were better.

Apr 24, 2015 | Full Review…

A sloggy, heartfelt piece of quasi-magical realist storytelling.

Apr 24, 2015 | Rating: C+ | Full Review…

Crowe strives to strike a universal chord about the futility of war. Simplistic? Maybe. But in crafting a film about the pain a parent feels after losing a child in battle, Crowe transcends borders and politics.

Apr 24, 2015 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Crowe needs, badly, a director to push back against his default mode: The script for The Water Diviner posits that Joshua Connor is the most interesting man in the frame at all times, but Crowe's performance doesn't earn that.

Apr 24, 2015 | Full Review…

Even slightly self-censored, its images of broken cities and the walking wounded is a strong restating of the film's message: There is no such thing as a "good" war. There's only war - sometimes necessary, sometimes not. And always inhuman.

Apr 24, 2015 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Water Diviner

All the excitement you'd expect from a film about the battle for Gallipoli -- or, rather, from slogging through the mud of the battle field four years later in order to inexplicably, magically divine the places where your three sons died...one...by...one....in order to fulfill a promise to a depressed woman who killed herself long ago. Quick tip: Save you ticket money and take a two hour nap instead!

Christian C
Christian C

Super Reviewer

½

A cheesey love story that has an equally absurd plot. Well acted shame about the rest.

Film Crazy
Film Crazy

Super Reviewer

½

Russell Crowe's performance is the only thing that prevents this from being a complete disaster, since his awful direction and the lame script turn the film into a Mexican telenovela for alpha males, with ludicrous situations, cheesy dialogue and Olga Kurylenko as an irritating caricature.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

Deserving more attention that it has thus far received, The Water Diviner represents Russell Crowe's directorial debut and the result is relatively successful, if unspectacular. While the plot involves an Australian man traveling to British-occupied post-Ottoman Turkey, trying to recover his sons' remains in the aftermath of WWI (all three were presumably killed at The Battle of Gallipoli), it is framed as a journey of self- discovery with light romantic elements. Crowe proves to be a competent but not exceptional director. His true talents lie in front of the camera and he is still an able lead, provided he has something to work with. Olga Kurylenko perks up the picture a bit with her charms, even if her casting as a Turkish woman is questionable. (She's French Russian, but Hollywood has been doing this shit forever, so who cares right?) There are many historical elements that go nowhere - the British Occupation, Turkish Nationalist movements, the Greek Invasion, women's lack of rights in an Islamic society, among others that just form noise and an interesting backdrop. What proves more substantial is the film's true subtext about the aftermath of the WWI itself. I would argue that The Water Diviner is a light, somber epitaph to the generation of young men lost on both sides of the Middle Eastern campaign and the people they left behind. It's not perfect and lacks the punch it might have had, but the topic is something more Americans need to be familiar with, and you could do far worse things with your time.

Joshua Sheetz
Joshua Sheetz

Super Reviewer

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