Thursday, April 21, 2011

Ondine

NetFlix
IMDB
My Rating: 6.5 /10  

An Irish fisherman (Colin Farrell) hauls in an unexpected catch when a mysterious girl (Alicja Bachleda) gets tangled in his nets and soon affects the lives of everyone around her in this fantastical seaside tale from director Neil Jordan (Interview with the Vampire). Is it possible this beautiful stranger is a mythical sea nymph who's been summoned from the ocean's depths ... or is she something far more common?

If you're looking for something to watch with the missus, you could do much worse than this.  Take a pinch of "Local Hero" and a dab of "Secret of Roan Innish" and stir them into a mystery/romance and you get this. The wives will love it and the husbands won't be bored, because it's about a million times better than the typical chick flick. Colin Farrell even plays a sympathetic part, instead of his usual dickish persona. The coastal scenery of Ireland is terrific, too.

Basically, our hero is a lonely fisherman separated from an alcoholic wife with a crippled daughter, and one day he hauls up his net and there's a girl in it. She doesn't want to be seen by anyone and seems to have magical fishie powers. There's some amusing stuff as his wheelchair-bound daughter starts an investigation on the mystery woman living in dad's shack, and some very understated humor. It's all quite relaxing and non-shrill, with excellent music. Things take a dark turn when the selkie husband appears and starts pursuing the girl, leading to a final revelation about her nature.

The only downside is the language, since there are several heavy Irish accents involved and even with five years of exposure to various regional accents thanks to BBC, we both found some of the dialog difficult to follow. There was a lot of, "Can you turn this up a little more?"

If your wife is after you to watch something other than monster movies, I recommend this as a choice that will not fry your sanity.




Suggested Accompaniment: If you need me to tell you Guinness and a Peterson pipe filled with Peterson Irish Oak, you'll not be getting any Lucky Charms, ever.