Haunted by History

TITLE: WATERLAND

DIRECTOR: STEPHEN GYLLENHAAL

WRITER: PETER PRINCE

THE BOTTOM LINE: A tormented time traveler tries to make peace with his past in a challenging, absorbing film.

Taking leave of his students upon his involuntary retirement, a high school teacher named Tom Crick (Jeremy Irons) tells them why he chose history as his subject. He was in Germany at the end of World War II. The horrors he witnessed were incomprehensible to him. He could deal with them only by inserting them into historical narrative, which granted them a spurious coherence and him the distance he required to live with them.

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