One of America?s greatest performers, Bobby Darin lived a rags-to-riches life. He worked his way from shady nightclubs to his dream destination, The Copacabana, where he wowed crowds with "Splish Splash," "Mack the Knife"... more » and other hits. He was a marvel at singing, songwriting and performing ? stealing the hearts of fans everywhere despite the suffering in his own hear.« less
David M. (KingofGarageSales) from FAYETTEVILLE, AR Reviewed on 12/6/2017...
My image of Kevin Spacey was formed by his stellar-but-chilling portrayal in House of Cards, and I've requested every DVD he starred in, sight unseen.
So I was at first taken aback when I began watching Beyond The Sea and realized that (1) it was a musical in which (2) a singing-and-dancing Kevin Spacey portrayed teen idol Bobby Darin.
I confess to being old enough to remember Bobby Darin and my first reaction was that Kevin Spacey was no Bobby Darin. Bobby Darin's father, perhaps, but not the bobby-sox heartthrob Bobby Darin I remembered.
But the more I watched--and became increasingly fascinated by Spacey's versatility as not only an actor but also as a singer and dancer (including several great tap-dancing routines)--the more I became caught up in the story line and the extent to which my memories of the Bobby Darin of my youth faded like wisps of breeze-blown mist.
Beyond The Sea is a superlative "suspension of disbelief" movie that doesn't have to rely on Byzantine plot twists or tension to thoroughly entertain. Four stars!
3 of 3 member(s) found this review helpful.
MARY B. from SATSUMA, FL Reviewed on 9/26/2015...
I liked the Movie"Beyond the Sea" always was a fan of Bobby Darin- Kevin Spacey was superb in the role. I only need to see it once. But I may swap for a cd of Bobby's hit tunes.
Frank E. (realartist) from HENDERSONVLLE, NC Reviewed on 4/30/2010...
Wow...what an amazing movie. Produced and performed by Kevin Spacey. One would not know he had this much talent by having seen a few of his movies. This gave him the opportunity to show he is REALLY talented! I was slack jawed-dumbfounded.
Those of us with a few years on us recall his career vaguely. Most memorable,
of course, the 'top of the chart' 50's style "Splish Splash, I was Taking a Bath"..
I was just going off to war about that very time...and lost track of everything after that. So it was an astounding thing to see Bobby Darin blossom into a crooner
up there with Sinatra, and every other great vocalist you can think of.
This movie was extremely well acted and produced and directed. Most of us really wish
we could see a lot more like these. The simple fact that the movie "Crazy Heart" with Jeff Bridges made oscar status is a clue. Indeed, that Jeff, after dozens of movies, got really noticed this time. He has always been good. But the combination of good acting, and good music is obviously a winner. Maybe we can start to see more movies with a little less macabre, and profoundly disturbing hemmoraging for entertainment...and a lot
more great stories...and great music. There are a million great vocalists and musicians...we almost never see or hear them with the stage/screen dominated by films obviously targeting the pocketbooks of adolescents with a death wish/and or, worse, who relish and savor sadomosochism.
6 of 7 member(s) found this review helpful.
Anthia R. (hepburn05) from CANBY, CA Reviewed on 3/15/2010...
A good story about Bobby Darin. A good story with good acting and singing. I like the fact that you get a better view of the singers themselves and the hardships along with the fame they had to deal with.
3 of 4 member(s) found this review helpful.
Justina C. Reviewed on 8/31/2008...
Excellent! The song & dance numbers are really great & YES it is really Kevin Spacey singing.
4 of 5 member(s) found this review helpful.
Michael M. (bugsyboy) from LEAWOOD, KS Reviewed on 6/13/2008...
This biopic about Bobby Darin is excellent. Who knew Kevin Spacey could sing.
2 of 3 member(s) found this review helpful.
Marla R. (Marla-R) from SEDALIA, MO Reviewed on 2/19/2008...
3 of 5 member(s) found this review helpful.
An Open Letter to Kevin Spacey
Antoinette Klein | Hoover, Alabama USA | 02/13/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
Thank you for reviving interest in one of the truly great singers of the 20th century. Bobby Darin was a teen idol during my teen years. Your movie, so lovingly made and beautifully acted, brought back so many wonderful memories that I sat there in the theater and cried with joy. An 8th grade sock hop where everyone was jumping to "Splish Splash," a dj-call in show where my current crush dedicated "Dream Lover" to me, and the reassuring and hopeful lyrics of "Beyond the Sea" that played in my mind during some of high school's darker moments are just some of the many memories your movie brought back. I'm sure anyone of my generation who was tuned in to music would love this movie. But my 21-year old daughter whom I coerced into going with me also loved it and we plan on scouring amazon for all the remastered CD's and DVD's on this great and talented man, Bobby Darin.
Speaking of great and talented, you have outdone yourself on this one. We all knew you were a fine actor, but to see you singing and dancing and obviously loving it and imitating Bobby's style and moves so uncannily well must have brought as much joy to you as it did to all of us fortunate enough to have seen this movie.
Seeing Bobby's love affair with Sandra Dee played out on the screen was great and brought back all those hours my friends and I spent pouring over issues of "Photoplay" to read anything about the super couple.
Even those not blessed with memories of Bobby from his heydey will fall in love with this movie for its songs alone. From the snappy "Mack the Knife" opening to the tearful closing, this movie is great and one I will definitely get on DVD when available.
Thank you, Kevin Spacey. This is your masterpiece.
Don't miss this one
K. Corn | Indianapolis,, IN United States | 11/23/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Not only does Spacey do his own singing in this movie but he's got Darren's moves down as well. Obviously a labor of love, the movie is not without some flaws but Kevin Spacey is such a superb, riveting actor that you're likely to overlook any slight imperfections and be entranced by this movie. I've bought just about every book and video about Darren (including some rare video footage) and I'm awed at the way Spacey captures Darren's essence - his personality, his perfectionisn, the whole package. Clearly aware of the limited time available to him, Darren pushed himself to the brink of exhaustion and probably shortened his life even more - but oh, what he accomplished while he had the time! Put this on your list of "must-see" holiday films, one that has to be see on the big screen. This one ought to catapalt Spacey's reputation even higher...and deservedly so."
Mary T. James | Loganville, Ga USA | 02/16/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I fell in love all over again not only with Bobby Darin but Kevin Spacey as well. I loved the movie and the music and I've tried to take my parents to see it for weeks now but it isn't showing anywhere! Why did they only open in a couple of Art Theaters? It's a shame the public isn't getting a chance to see this wonderful film about such a great performer. My dad never goes to movies but at age 76 he waits patiently for it to come to a theater near him. I've already requested to be notified when it is available on DVD. This is a must own for me. Thanks for all the love that went into making this movie. Kevin deserves an Oscar for his performance. I'd also like to track down a copy of the movie Captain Newman MD when Bobby Darin was nominated for an Oscar."
A good film about Bobby Darin, lovingly made by Spacey
Nicolas Leobold | New York, NY United States | 12/19/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I saw this movie on opening weekend Saturday last night at the Loews Lincoln Square Cinemas in New York City. My reaction is that the film did have numerous flaws, and especially in the first half of the film it just didn't have "it", as character Polly described that intangible necessity of successful show business. The film meandered through several incoherent flash back/alternate reality episodes and several unnecesary musical extravaganza-type dance numbers which were just superfluous and out of place. However, I must say that the film got much better as it went along and the second half was very good. There are several beautiful scenes including the Darins' wedding night and the closing concert number when Bobby gives his farewell. The other good thing is that Kevin Spacey did all his own musical performances in this movie, and he sings and dances very well, especially his singing, which really does Bobby Darin justice. It's obvious from interviews Spacey has given that he is a big fan of Darin's, and his care and emotion for the legend are obvious in the film, which Spacey also directed and produced. Spacey had to get overseas financing for this film and it was shot in Germany, because Hollywood didn't think American audiences would pay to see a movie about a singer most people don't know about. I think that was a mistake, but instead of detracting from the quality of the film, I think like most European productions, the German production locations and crews were an advantage, and certainly the Las Vegas and California scenes look like they were shot in the U.S. (thanks to modern special effects). I recommend this movie. It's a loving tribute to Bobby Darin, a great singer and an entertainer who overcame impossible odds to succeed in show business. This movie also overcame long odds and Kevin Spacey must be given credit for persevering and finally getting it made."
Plays like a TV movie
Larry VanDeSande | Mason, Michigan United States | 10/14/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"My greatest memory of this film -- "Beyond the Sea", actor/director/producer Kevin Spacey's very personal and somewhat idiosyncratic look at the life of 1960s singer-actor Bobby Darin -- is how little the film used the immense talent available
In a cast that included Spacey, Kate Bosworth, John Goodman and Bob Hoskins, not a single actor in the group could be said to deliver anything more than an adequate performance. Spacey, who played the adult Darin and did his own singing in the movie, was a shell of the actor that distinguished himself in much better films like "The Shipping News", "American Beauty" and "L.A. Confidential". His singing was pretty good and, who knows, he may have been the epitome of Darin. But he wasn't much compared to what Kevin Spacey has been in the past.
Kate Bosworth has starred in a mix of films in her young life ranging from "Sin City" to "Blue Crush" to "Rules of Attraction", does creditable work as Mrs. Darin, Sandra Dee. Her wigs don't do much for the part -- the real Sandra Dee's hair looked more realistic than actresses hair does in the new century -- although she was always well-lighted and, therefore, filmed well. Unfortunately, her role was monodimensional and she delivered the goods as if a cardboard cutout with moveable lips and eyebrows.
The greatest disappointment for me was the tawdry and boring character John Goodman was asked to play. Here is an actor of stature that can adapt to many characterizations and adapted well to this one. However, either the role, the script of the direction drained Goodman of his trademark humor and individuality. I wasn't sure if his character was supposed to be English but it seemed so; he spoke with a minor accent and displayed all the reticence of an English gentleman.
As to the film itself, Spacey's production was too far fetched in the beginning to pull you into the story. In fact, it wasn't clear to me what was going in the movie's first 10 minutes. Was this a put on, this correspondence between characters in front of the audience? When the story got moving, it was pretty entertaining. Yet, if this movie was all there was to Darin's life, it made a pretty forgettable flick.
This movie seemed to me to play out more like a made for TV flick than a Hollywood production. Comparing it to "Walk the Line", the film about singer Johnny Cash made about the same time, was like comparing "Reagan" to "Nixon": One was made for cable with a limited budget & limited perspective and played out like a sequence of frames in the cartoon section. Yhe other was made for the big screen with corresponding acting budget, breadth in production values, and felicities in the script based on solid historical research.
"Beyond the Sea" can be an interesting view into the life of a 1960s pop icon if you can get by the cornball beginning and not think about why these great actors aren't being asked to be great actors. But under no circumstances will it ever be more than an average film."