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A Bigger Splash review: Heat is soaring on love island

By Damon Smith

Published 24/06/2016

Tilda Swinton and Ralph Fiennes in A Bigger Splash
Tilda Swinton and Ralph Fiennes in A Bigger Splash

David Bowie-esque glam rock doyenne Marianne Lane (Tilda Swinton) is recuperating from surgery on her vocal cords on an Italian island with her boyfriend, documentary filmmaker Paul De Smedt (Matthias Schoenaerts).

Arriving on the scene is her old flame, record producer Harry Hawkes (Ralph Fiennes). Harry plans to drive a wedge between the couple, and has brought his teenage daughter, Penelope (Dakota Johnson) to distract Paul.

Harry charms housekeeper Clara (Elena Bucci) and wallows in nostalgia to remind the hostess of happy times with him. Marianne remains by Paul's side until the two men finally lock horns. Sharing its title with a 1967 David Hockney painting, A Bigger Splash is a spicy cinematic cocktail of sun, sea, sex and skullduggery. Luca Guadagnino's film is energized by Fiennes' portrayal of an emotional wrecking ball. And seeing the actor gyrating wildly to The Rolling Stones' hit Emotional Rescue truly smacks our gobs.

Swinton is in imperious form and the on-screen chemistry with Schoenaerts is as molten as freshly spewed lava.

Four stars

Belfast Telegraph

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