Have Your Say: The Deepest Dive Into The Abyss

Associate Editor, Features; Rotterdam, The Netherlands (@ardvark23)
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Have Your Say: The Deepest Dive Into The Abyss
For as long as I can remember, I have been fascinated by the world beneath the sea. Not being a particularly good swimmer and living in a country adjoining uncomfortably cold water, I never got into diving. Instead, as a kid I feasted on a steady diet of books and television documentaries about coral reefs, intelligent mammals, fearsome sharks, tentacled terrors and luminescent deep sea monsters.

In 1986, James Cameron's Aliens totally blew my mind. So when I heard his next film, The Abyss, was going to take place in the deep sea, featuring strange creatures, teenage me jumped for joy! And while I know the film has its flaws and lots of people don't like it, I totally love The Abyss to this day.

But rewind a bit to when that film was still being made. It was a huge, difficult and expensive undertaking, and went over-budget and well over its original deadline. Thinking Cameron might be on to something, predators were closing in, smelling blood and gold. Several deep-sea creature films spawned at different studios in the late eighties, and some of them even managed to be released before The Abyss (taking away a lot of its setting's novelty).

Me being me, I tried to see all of these whenever available, which in the Netherlands mostly meant VHS. Cheap or expensive, decent or terrible, I didn't care. I loved this sub-genre, pun intended. In fact, I still love it to this day. You can wake me up for a friendly revisit of Leviathan or Deep Star Six, and recently I succumbed to the no-budget charms of Endless Descent aka. The Rift, from which I took the picture of the... ehm... dragon starfish above. C'mon, what's not to love in that shot?

HYS-DeeperAbyssmal-ext.jpgHell, even the truly awful I-can't-believe-it's-not-porn marine horror called Plankton aka. Creatures from the Abyss was fun, and it provided me with plenty of cringed laughs at least (see the mouth-popping picture here). Although with that title I was scraping the bottom of the barrel so hard, I may have punched a hole in it by accident.

Or did I? My question of the week to you all is: have I missed any gems in the strange-creatures-from-beneath genre, new or old? And on the non-gem end, did I reach the bottom of that abyss, or are there even worse, more laughable films I should check out?

Chime in, in the comments below, and HAVE YOUR SAY!

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  • Tim Stevenson

    Deep Rising. Definitely a guilty pleasure.

  • Seraphyn

    the Big Blue? Doesn't really fit the theme.. but it's got some implied fantasy :)

  • ArmitageX

    Love "Leviathan." Such a guilty pleasure. I know it's just an underwater "Alien"/"The Thing" clone, but...I love it to death. Was always disappointed there were never sequels. Yeah, this is definitely one of my favorite sub-genres, as well.

    No mention of "Sphere"?

    Also, has anyone seen Roger Corman's hilariously awful "Lords of the Deep"?

  • John W

    Bermuda Depths (starring Connie Seleca)

    Up From The Depths.

    Ray Harryhausen's It Came From Beneath The Sea.

    Dagon (based on the HP Lovecraft story)

    Dark Waters (not sure if this is based on a Lovecraft story but very Lovecraftian)

    Does Humanoids From The Deep count?

  • Ard Vijn

    There are no wrong answers.
    Also, this is turning into such an awesome fun list of titles!

  • cjohnston

    was Afraid You had already drifted thru making the rounds...
    Forgot two - Waterworld and Kraken: Tentacles of the Deep..

  • cjohnston

    besides cavaliers shout-out for Warlord of Atlantis; I'd personally haveta go 20,000 Leagues Under Sea as well to go along with Deep Rising...

  • Ard Vijn

    I love DEEP RISING, such a fun movie! Very much underrated.

  • cjohnston

    ...If you like what D.R. offers and you haven't seein it yet; I HIGHLY recommend Kraken: Tentacles of the Deep.!(!!)..
    .. made for t.v. film; but it's JUST as Sweet Enjoyable Awesome and Entertaining.
    and - (I tell this to a lot of folks, whenever Deep Rising comes up, so - Apologies if I'm mentioning this *yet* again..lol).
    Whenever I'm in an elevator now ---- I ALWAYS have Girl From Ipanema in my head...(!). .....catchy tune though - so I don't mind..

  • Ard Vijn


  • cjohnston

    running a bit behind schedule this afternoon; but - a few (two, ..i think.) brief comments to come ------ piggy-backing your remark a bit later in the day...

  • Christopher Webster

    Never apologize for The Abyss. It's a superb film with a cracking script. I'm floored by it on pretty much every level when I see it and I predict something of a resurgence once the Blu-ray finally hits (perhaps) next year.

    Scream Factory's Leviathan is worth picking up. Still waiting on a Deepstar Six R1 release. I actually dig Sphere. Disney's 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea was also favourite when I was a kid.

  • the hong Kong cavaliers

    Love Leviathan , Peter Weller yes please but my fav is warlord of Atlantis with the delightful Doug McClure

  • cjohnston

    that's an Awesome one..
    --- Props --

  • William Johnson

    Is it wrong of me that I still want to see "Empires of the Deep"?

  • Christopher Webster

    No, it's not! Count me in as part of that club!

  • Ard Vijn

    Eh... yeah, me as well!

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