In the Heart of the Sea (Blu-ray release 2016-3-8) is about the sinking of a whaling ship Essex – the true event that inspired Moby Dick.  Although there are several areas that the movie needs improvement, I don’t think the movie is as bad as some reviewers stated.  My theory of why the movie sank in the box office is as follows:

  • Big budget movies need to be exciting, entertaining and causing people to feel good at the end.  This movie merely provided excitement for a short time.
  • Eating human is not a factor of attracting audience, since this is not a horror movie.
  • This is essentially a story of men being defeated by a monster.  That’s a hard sell, even though it is real history.  Imagine Alien (1979) defeated the whole crew easily, and no one managed to fight back.  This would not attract audience at all.
  • Whale hunting is now considered evil.  I want to watch Thor kicking the bad guys’ asses and saving the world, not doing evil stuff.

To summarize, I believe that the filmmakers picked the wrong non-fiction book to adapt to a big budget movie.