The Whale

There are two parts to the movie. One is about how good the movie is and the other is the controversy surrounding the casting and the whole question if the movie is Fatphobic. I would like to look at each of them here.

What an amazing performance by Brendan Fraser. Fraser plays an 600 pound recluse Gay English teacher who is trying to connect with his estranged teenage daughter from whose life he had walked away years before. I would consider Fraser’s performance to be worthy of an Oscar Nomination. It is probably the best role of Fraser’s career till date. Also you feel so good when someone had been in decline getting a role such as this to come back. I love it.

The film sparkles with compassion across characters, across the storyline, across characters. even those who appear in the movie only as references and passing remarks. The movie also touches a sadness inside us. We want to be there in person and tell them that we are with you. 

When Brendan’s character remarks ‘People are Amazing’ I had tears in my eyes. There are also some elements of humor that seem so apt and at the same time filled with innocence and you can feel it like a beautiful glaze on everything that torments the characters. 

Was the casting good? I think so. Fraser lived the character. Now the question is should they have casted a Gay person who is overweight for the role ? My personal take is no, because movies tell stories. It is all make believe and actors play characters. That is how I see it. I don’t think that argument is right? Actors take up roles that are not anything what it is in real life. There are Gay characters played by hetrosexuals and viceversa. Also actors who are in physical appearances that are way different from what they are in real life. That is my personal opinion because this is a movie.

Now for Fatphobic. The argument is that the movie portrays that everyone like this is beyond change. Here also I kind of disagree as this is only about one person and does not talk of everyone who is overweight. Also the movie does show that Fraser’s character does not want to go to the hospital or change and you can find reasons as you watch the movie. So in my personal opinion, I don’t think it is fatphobic.

But I would like to add something. The scenes where Fraser’s character charlie binge eats are a bit tough to watch and you feel why can’t someone help. And then I thought, who am I to judge someone else? Every individual life is not a generalization. I am on the heavier side but not like the character. So I cannot fully say how an individual would feel.

Leaving all that controversy aside, I would say it is a movie you should watch. Because it is so good. Hong Chau, Sadie Sink, Ty Simpkins and Samantha Morton all do an amazing show… But Brendan Fraser is Gut Wrenching in his role as Charlie

Sharing a few quotes from the movie.

I thought I was dying, and I wanted to hear it one last time.

Why the hell would you want to believe the world is about to end?

If you don’t go to the hospital, you’ll be dead by the weekend.

I was always this big. I just let it get out of control.

I understand that you are angry, but you don’t have to be angry at the entire world. You can just be angry at me.



Categories: Movies, Reviews

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