7.6/10
142,631
387 user 83 critic

The Abyss (1989)

PG-13 | | Adventure, Drama, Sci-Fi | 9 August 1989 (USA)
A civilian diving team is enlisted to search for a lost nuclear submarine and face danger while encountering an alien aquatic species.

Director:

Writer:

Reviews
Popularity
1,468 ( 58)

On Disc

at Amazon

Won 1 Oscar. Another 8 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Contact (1997)
Drama | Mystery | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Dr. Ellie Arroway, after years of searching, finds conclusive radio proof of extraterrestrial intelligence, sending plans for a mysterious machine.

Director: Robert Zemeckis
Stars: Jodie Foster, Matthew McConaughey, Tom Skerritt
Sphere (1998)
Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A spaceship is discovered under three hundred years' worth of coral growth at the bottom of the ocean.

Director: Barry Levinson
Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Sharon Stone, Samuel L. Jackson
Pitch Black (2000)
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A commercial transport ship and its crew are marooned on a planet full of bloodthirsty creatures that only come out to feast at night. But then, they learn that a month-long eclipse is about to occur.

Director: David Twohy
Stars: Radha Mitchell, Cole Hauser, Vin Diesel
Event Horizon (1997)
Horror | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A rescue crew investigates a spaceship that disappeared into a black hole and has now returned...with someone or something new on-board.

Director: Paul W.S. Anderson
Stars: Laurence Fishburne, Sam Neill, Kathleen Quinlan
Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

After an accidental encounter with otherworldly vessels, an ordinary man follows a series of psychic clues to the first scheduled meeting between representatives of Earth and visitors from the cosmos.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Richard Dreyfuss, François Truffaut, Teri Garr
Adventure | Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A highly advanced robotic boy longs to become "real" so that he can regain the love of his human mother.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Haley Joel Osment, Jude Law, Frances O'Connor
True Lies (1994)
Action | Comedy | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A fearless, globe-trotting, terrorist-battling secret agent has his life turned upside down when he discovers his wife might be having an affair with a used car salesman while terrorists smuggle nuclear war heads into the United States.

Director: James Cameron
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jamie Lee Curtis, Tom Arnold
Equilibrium (2002)
Action | Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

In an oppressive future where all forms of feeling are illegal, a man in charge of enforcing the law rises to overthrow the system and state.

Director: Kurt Wimmer
Stars: Christian Bale, Sean Bean, Emily Watson
Action | Adventure | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

In a future where a special police unit is able to arrest murderers before they commit their crimes, an officer from that unit is himself accused of a future murder.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Tom Cruise, Colin Farrell, Samantha Morton
Dark City (1998)
Mystery | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A man struggles with memories of his past, including a wife he cannot remember, in a nightmarish world with no sun.

Director: Alex Proyas
Stars: Rufus Sewell, Kiefer Sutherland, Jennifer Connelly
Gattaca (1997)
Drama | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A genetically inferior man assumes the identity of a superior one in order to pursue his lifelong dream of space travel.

Director: Andrew Niccol
Stars: Ethan Hawke, Uma Thurman, Jude Law
Total Recall (1990)
Action | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

When a man goes for virtual vacation memories of the planet Mars, an unexpected and harrowing series of events forces him to go to the planet for real - or does he?

Director: Paul Verhoeven
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sharon Stone, Michael Ironside
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
Captain Kidd Brewer Jr. ...
Lew Finler (as Capt. Kidd Brewer Jr.)
George Robert Klek ...
Wilhite
...
...
...
Dwight Perry (as Richard Warlock)
Jimmie Ray Weeks ...
Leland McBride
...
DeMarco
Edit

Storyline

Formerly married petroleum engineers who still have some issues to work out. They are drafted to assist a gung-ho Navy SEAL with a top-secret recovery operation: a nuclear sub has been ambushed and sunk, under mysterious circumstances, in some of the deepest waters on Earth. Written by Jwelch5742

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

There's everything you've ever known about adventure, and then there's The Abyss. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for language and some scenes of action | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

9 August 1989 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Abyss  »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$70,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$9,319,797, 13 August 1989, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$54,461,047

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$90,000,098
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (special edition)

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)

Color:

(DuArt)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In-movie monitor time stamps show at one point January 1987. It's an unintentional hint to a date because a device needed a restart and began with 01/01/87. See more »

Goofs

While Lindsay's drowning scene in the submersible was obviously played for dramatic effect, if they were really concerned about reviving her it would have made much more sense for her to take a deep breath and for Bud to then immediately began towing her back to the rig. She would have then drowned on the way there and there would have been less time between her drowning and the start of the resuscitation attempt, thus increasing the chance that she would be successfully revived. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
USS Montana Captain: Sixty knots? No way, Barnes. The Reds don't have anything that fast.
See more »

Crazy Credits

There was a memoriam for Captain Kidd Brewer Jr. added to all subsequent home and television releases. See more »

Connections

References Roger Ramjet (1965) See more »

Soundtracks

Too Much Pressure
(uncredited)
Written by N. Davies
Published by Fairwood Music Ltd.
Performed by The Selecter
Courtesy of EMI Records Group/Chrysalis Records, Inc.
By Arrangement with CEMA Special Markets
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Epic original sci-fi adventure with a lot of heart, action, suspense, and brains
5 July 2005 | by See all my reviews

The Abyss is one of my all-time favorite sci-fi films. It mixes hard science with abject fantasy to make moral and philosophical points about the human condition and our place in the universe without the usual clichés. And it does so with good dialog, strong characterization, and intensely emotional acting. Harris and Mastrantonio are absolutely electric together and dominate the screen, but the entire cast deserves plenty of credit. The production itself is mesmerizing despite its vast scale and tastefully used special effects. The film is long, but worth every second of the experience, and the slightly lengthier, more detailed Special Edition version is even better than the original.

Ostensibly, this is a film about first contact with non-terrestrial intelligence. But the story allegorically deals with an amazing array of themes common to great dramas - violence, love, capitalism, war, courage and cowardice. The hardest, most obedient soldier in the film, played spectacularly by Michael Biehn, is a coward, and a man who is hopelessly in love with his estranged wife (Harris) turns that love into an act of suicidal heroism which might unintentionally save the world. And yet nothing is exactly as it seems to be, and there are really no spoilers in this review. There are so many subtle and sensitively developed themes in this film that it is hard to imagine a more epically human drama in the sci-fi genre. Even so, this is a film which entertains at every level, and will satisfy the action fan as much as the wannabe film critic. ;-)

Most of the film takes place on an experimental submarine drilling platform owned by a petroleum company. A nuclear sub has been lost in "the abyss" - a subduction trench near the Caiman Islands - after encountering an impossibly fast object. Soon, the US military commandeers the platform and its command ship - The Benthic Explorer - to attempt a rescue mission. As everything begins to go wrong, and the encounters with strange phenomena continue, the Navy SEAL in charge of the rescue attempt begins to crack. Meanwhile, on the surface, accusations concerning the sub are escalating between the USSR and USA, and nuclear war seems immanent. This describes just a small segment of the deliciously complex plot that unfolds in The Abyss. You'll have to see it to enjoy the rest.


24 of 34 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 387 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Watch the Latest Episode of "The IMDb Show"

This week on "The IMDb Show," La La Land producer Jordan Horowitz shares some "secret" information about his new spy-thriller series, "Counterpart." Plus, Kevin Smith lets us in on his favorite Sundance movies of all time.

Watch the show