Facets Cinémathèque

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July 7–13, 2017

Chicago Premiere

The Sea

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Film still: The Sea Film still: The Sea


"Stirring, atmospheric"
  —The Independent
"Impeccable acting... a first-class cast (including Charlotte Rampling and Sinéad Cusack) make this an absorbing watch"
  —TimeOut London
"A raging central performance by Ciarán Hinds... John Conroy's dreamlike cinematography really does evoke Bonnard with a mood of natural wonder"
  —Hollywood Reporter
"The film's emotional still waters run deep... a series of fine actors deliver nuanced and powerful performances"
  —Screen International
"The acting is of such a high calibre and the emotions so raw that the film proves hard to resist"
  —Irish Times

Grieving after the loss of his wife, art historian Max Morden (Ciarán Hinds) returns to the quiet seaside resort where he spent summers as a child. Max lodges at a boarding house he once frequented, where frosty proprietor Miss Vavasour (Charlotte Rampling), and eccentric resident Blunden (Karl Johnson), now reside. Before long, and despite protestations from his daughter Clare (Ruth Bradley), Max's mind returns to an idyllic summer in 1955 when, as a child, he encountered the Grace family. Carlo (Rufus Sewell) and Connie (Natascha McElhone) were unlike any adults he had met before: nonchalant, bohemian and filled with courteous goodwill. Young Max (Matthew Dillon) befriends the young Grace twins, Chloe (Missy Keating) and Myles (Padhraig Parkinson), and his fascination for this unconventional clan transforms into intimacy and love. Meanwhile, the children's young nanny Rose (Bonnie Wright), an outsider like Max, regards the Grace's new surrogate with quiet suspicion. While Max continues to mourn his late wife, and recalls moments with his departed partner Anna (Sinéad Cusack), he also confronts a distant trauma from the past.

Based on John Banville's Man Booker Prize-winning novel, The Sea is a story of memory, love, loss, regret... and the persistent possibility of rebirth.

Directed by Stephen Brown, UK/Ireland, 2013, 86 mins.


  • Fri., July 7 at 7 pm
  • Sat., July 8 at 3 & 5 pm
  • Sun., July 9 at 1 & 3 pm
  • Tues.–Thurs., July 11–13 at 7 pm
Buy tickets


$10 general admission

$5 for Facets Members

The Facets Cinémathèque is located at 1517 W. Fullerton Ave. in Chicago. Call the Cinémathèque Hotline at 773.281.4114 for the latest schedule, showtimes and updates.

For all Cinémathèque inquiries, contact Charles Coleman at 773.281.9075 or

  • John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
  • Artworks: National Endowment for the Arts
  • Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences
  • Comer Family Foundation
  • Bloomberg Philanthropies
  • Alphawood Foundation
  • Polk Bros. Foundation