Down 464 this week

Dead Calm (1989)

R  |   |  Thriller  |  7 April 1989 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.8/10 from 28,024 users  
Reviews: 135 user | 60 critic

A mass-murderer kidnaps and seduces a young woman after leaving her husband to die on the vessel whose crew he's just slaughtered.



(screenplay), (novel)
Watch Trailer
0Check in

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video


The 25 Most Immersive Worlds in Cinema

Highly immersive cinematic worlds can carry a movie, and we've rounded up the best of the best.

See the full list

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 21 titles
created 17 Jun 2012
a list of 24 titles
created 27 Aug 2012
a list of 40 titles
created 28 Mar 2013
a list of 30 titles
created 01 Feb 2014
a list of 41 titles
created 2 months ago

Related Items

Search for "Dead Calm" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: Dead Calm (1989)

Dead Calm (1989) on IMDb 6.8/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Dead Calm.

User Polls

5 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

To Die For (1995)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Suzanne Stone is an aspiring TV personality who will do anything to be in the spotlight, including enlisting three teenagers to kill her husband.

Director: Gus Van Sant
Stars: Nicole Kidman, Matt Dillon, Joaquin Phoenix
Malice (1993)
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A tale about a happily married couple who would like to have children. Tracy teaches art, Andy's a college dean. Things are never the same after she is taken to hospital and operated upon by Jed, a "know all" doctor.

Director: Harold Becker
Stars: Alec Baldwin, Nicole Kidman, Bill Pullman
Birthday Girl (2001)
Comedy | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A thirtysomething bank clerk from St Albans has his small-town life exploded by the arrival of his Russian mail-order bride.

Director: Jez Butterworth
Stars: Nicole Kidman, Vincent Cassel, Ben Chaplin
Nightmaster (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.5/10 X  

Steve Beck (Vince Martin) is a Karate instructor, Robby Mason (Tom Jennings) his prize student. Beck is using drugs to give him an edge. Guy Duncan (Craig Pearce) is Beck's drug connection ... See full summary »

Director: Mark Joffe
Stars: Tom Jennings, Nicole Kidman, Joanne Samuel
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

After her humiliated husband kills himself, an embittered pregnant widow loses her child, and embarks on a mission of vengeance against a woman and her family.

Director: Curtis Hanson
Stars: Annabella Sciorra, Rebecca De Mornay, Matt McCoy
Far and Away (1992)
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A young man leaves Ireland with his landlord's daughter after some trouble with her father, and they dream of owning land at the big give-away in Oklahoma ca. 1893. When they get to the new... See full summary »

Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Tom Cruise, Nicole Kidman, Thomas Gibson
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A woman advertising for a new roommate finds that something very strange is going on with the tenant who decides to move in.

Director: Barbet Schroeder
Stars: Bridget Fonda, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Steven Weber
Bangkok Hilton (TV Mini-Series 1989)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

The story of Kat Stanton (Kidman), an Australian woman searching for her father who, whilst travelling back from London to Australia via Thailand, makes friends with Arkie Ragan (Ehlers), a... See full summary »

Stars: Nicole Kidman, Denholm Elliott, Hugo Weaving
Vietnam (TV Mini-Series 1987)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Stars: Barry Otto, Nicole Kidman, Nicholas Eadie
Emerald City (1988)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A comedy of life's temptations - lust, greed and power. The city in question is Sydney and the colour green signifies greed and envy in David Williamsons amusing satire on its film and ... See full synopsis »

Director: Michael Jenkins
Stars: John Hargreaves, Nicole Kidman, Chris Haywood
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A married man's one night stand comes back to haunt him when that lover begins to stalk him and his family.

Director: Adrian Lyne
Stars: Michael Douglas, Glenn Close, Anne Archer
The Bit Part (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
Director: Brendan Maher
Stars: Chris Haywood, Nicole Kidman, Katrina Foster


Complete credited cast:
Rod Mullinar ...
Joshua Tilden ...
George Shevtsov ...
Michael Long ...
Lisa Collins ...
Paula Hudson-Brinkley ...
Sharon Cook ...
Benji ...
Dog (as Benji U.D. A.D.)


An Australian couple take a sailing trip in the Pacific to forget about a terrible accident. While on the open sea, in dead calm, they come across a ship with one survivor who is not at all what he seems. Written by Loring Holden <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


In the middle of nowhere there is nowhere to hide. See more »




R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

7 April 1989 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dead Calm: A Voyage Into Fear  »

Box Office


$7,825,009 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (TV)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The yacht 'Storm Vogel' was used as the yacht the 'Saracen'. See more »


In the scene where Rae is loading the shotgun, you can see the primers of the shotgun shells that have already been fired. See more »


[first lines]
sailor #1: Merry Christmas, Captain Ingram.
John Ingram: [returning salute] Merry Christmas, Eric.
sailor #2: Merry Christmas, sir...
See more »

Crazy Credits

The producers wish to thank the owners of 'Storm Vogel' for the use of their yacht as the 'Saracen' and Keith Williams, the staff and management of Hamilton Island. See more »


Version of The Deep (1970) See more »


The Itsy Bitsy Spider
Traditional children's nursery rhyme
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A great horror thriller in the style of Eric Red
29 May 2002 | by (Finland) – See all my reviews

Dead Calm is directed by Australian film maker Philip Noyce (Patriot Games, Clear and Present Danger) and he is very talented director. This film stars young Nicole Kidman (21-22 years old in this film!) as a wife to Sam Neill and they have lost their son in a horrible car accident. They want to get over it and so they go to the sea with their boat and spend several weeks there. All is going fine and they are going to get over the loss of their son, but soon they discover an abandoned looking ship in the horizon and a man (Billy Zane) paddling desperately towards them. The man reaches the ship and the couple helps him on the board. He is little confusing and suspicious and soon his real nature is revealed...

This is extremely pleasant thriller and reminds me of films written by Eric Red (The Hitcher, Near Dark, Blue Steel) and these four films are very similar. The atmosphere in Dead Calm is very haunting and incredibly restrained. The atmosphere is also very similar to David Lynch and Lost Highway and Twin Peaks. The music is very important element in Dead Calm (as is in The Hitcher and Near Dark, too) and the overall feeling is very threatening and ominous. There are many exciting and breath taking scenes such as the one in which Sam Neill is trapped in a boat that is sinking and filling with water. With music, the photography is great and there are definitely no technical flaws in this great and surprisingly effective flick.

The young Nicole Kidman is so talented and acts perfectly. No one can say she can't act. Just look at her face and expressions: she is the main character in here and she is almost in every scene and she does nothing wrong or never acts over the top. The other actor's are also great, Sam Neill and Bill Zane, even though Zane goes little too far in couple of scenes and is not too believable. But overall, because there are so many great elements here, these little flaws and illogical plot turns can be forgiven.

Philip Noyce is worth watching director and he has done also other effective thrillers, but I think this will be one of his greatest achievements. Dead Calm is highly recommended.


57 of 74 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
George Miller returns with Mad Max: Fury Road (related to Dead Calm) BmanCrawler
'Cold and distant to her husband, yet willing to her captor' jackjokercostello
Why have sex with Zane? queendarkjewel
The sex scene? pryscilla_paille1
The Sex Scene: What do you make of this? A list of questions... RockyRambo1988
A better ending for this movie gamblej01
Discuss Dead Calm (1989) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: