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.