I’m surprised A Bigger Splash has only seven reviews on imdb at this point, for it’s an excellent little film, with superb acting, great pace that allows for character development and keeps things interesting, and nice cinematography, which has the feel of a holiday movie.
As the few reviewers on imdb pointed out, Ralph Fiennes is a riot as the super excited Harry Hawkes, music producer and ex-boyfriend to rock singer Marianne Lane (Tilda Swinton). Hawkes comes to the Italian island of Pantelleria with his daughter, Penelope (Dakota Johnson), and does his damnedest to win Lane over from current boyfriend Paul De Smedt (Matthias Shoenaerts).
Tilda Swinton does a believable portrayal of an aging rock star, and her facial expressions are a joy. Like Fiennes, she captivates every moment she’s on screen. To a lesser extent, Dakota Johnson and Matthias Schoenaerts do too, even though they are no match for the quirky powerhouses Fiennes and Swinton.
There’s lots of nudity, especially from Ralph Fiennes removing his clothes and jumping into the swimming pool, but it’s not overdone, it goes very well with the storyline (I won’t include spoilers). All the elements in the storyline – the nudity, Lane’s throat operation which renders her mute for a while, the young Penelope that tests her powers of attraction on suitable and non-suitable men alike, the manhood contests between Hawkes and De Smedt, the identity of Lane as a rock star, among them – are brought to relevance at the conclusion of the film, and the ending itself is quiet and magnific.
As they say, do yourself a favor and watch this film.
Some more info: Franco-Italian coproduction directed by Luca Guadagnino, screenplay by David Kajganich after a story by Alain Page. Remake after a 1969 film with Alain Delon, La piscine (The Swimming Pool).