The story of troubled sailor Donald Crowhurst has attracted a lot of attention from filmmakers with two adaptations this year alone. British indie horror director Simon Rumley (The Living and the Dead) has produced his own provocative, David Lynchian take on this most unusual of heroic tales.
Justin Salinger gives a superb performance as the guilt-ridden yachtsman from Devon lost in a hellish nightmare at sea in 1969, in the wake of Colin Firth’s starrier take on the same true story. Salinger is heartwrenchingly convincing: thin, clenched, doggedly making the best of it.
Crowhurst is a devoted husband, father, amateur sailor and businessman whose finances are extremely shaky. He sees a chance at turning his fortunes around when a newspaper offers cash prizes for sailing around the globe. So he signs up, staking his home and business for sponsorship. But inexperienced and ill-prepared, he is quickly in trouble. Eventually shutting down radio contact, he falsifies navigation logs off Argentina, then disappears.
We get an intriguing glimpse inside Crowhurst’s unhinged psyche in this brilliant hybrid of period docudrama and experimental suspense thriller. Shot locally in the Bristol Channel, this a tremendously good and moving film.
This event is co-sponsored by UWE_FILM as part of our engagement with UNESCO City of Film.