Charlotte Rampling excels in this chilly portrait of a wife whose husband inexplicably disappears on the beach during a holiday. Waking from a sun-bed slumber to find him gone, the camera follows her journey from worry to panic. The image of an air-sea helicopter hovering over the waves is a metaphor for the palpable sense of dread that pervades the film.
Under the Sand sees Rampling trying to come to terms with the disappearance. All evidence points to suicide, but she won't believe it. Grief blends with wish-fulfilment as she imagines conversations with him.
Part one of Ozon's intended trilogy on death, this is a wonderfully pared-down, incisive film. Clean, standoff camerawork adds to the sense of emotional distance and pain.
Under the Sand gets under your skin and stays there.