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Deep Impact
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Reviews & Ratings for
Deep Impact More at IMDbPro »

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148 out of 214 people found the following review useful:

"Deep Impact" is extremely under rated!

8/10
Author: manonfire_jer209 from United States
26 March 2005

5.9!? I can't believe that. I know disaster movies are usually crap such as The Day After Tomorrow, Armageddon, Godzilla, Independence Day, etc. This however was not crap. It boasted a fine cast that did great work the standout being Morgan Freeman and Robert Duvall. The rest of the cast though also did quite well. The story was handled in a fairly realistic manner and didn't require me to roll my eyes at the many plot contrivances the way the others I listed did. The only major flaw for me was the casting of tea Leoni. The usually dependable actress was extremely bland in this film. She has done much better work in her career. Despite that flaw this is another fine movie that for some reason is really under rated.

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112 out of 150 people found the following review useful:

See This Movie.

9/10
Author: JZeth (jzeth7@gmail.com) from United States
2 June 2005

Deep Impact is a well-done and thoughtful film that powerfully delivers the human touch in its pondering of the age-old question: What if extinction was just around the corner?

Deep Impact is most often compared to its death-comet partner from the summer of '98, Armageddon. Deep Impact is a drama; Armageddon is an action film, and delivers just what we would expect from an action film, namely, over-the-top characters, a simplistic storyline, and an abundance of special effects. Deep Impact presents just the opposite: Characters that are notably human, several dovetailed story lines, and it saves the special effects (which are very good) for the movie's climax.

Armageddon did better at the box office primarily because it was much more hyped, and because it featured an A-list star (Bruce Willis) while Deep Impact did not. Its enjoyability, though, is very limited: If you are not a fan of the action genre, you will not like Armageddon. Deep Impact is the substantially better film and reaches out to the viewer to a far deeper degree.

As you certainly know, the plot revolves around the fact that a seven-mile-wide comet is on a collision course with earth, and if it makes impact it will represent an Extinction Level Event (i.e., the death of all life on the planet). Having about a year and a half's notice of this, the U.S. and Russian governments send a spacecraft, the Messiah, to destroy the comet by drilling nuclear warheads into its core and then detonating. The movie focuses on three primary story lines: 1. The young reporter Jenny Lerner (Tea Leoni) and her struggles with her career and her parents; 2. The high-school couple of Leo Biederman (who discovered the comet; Elijah Wood) and Sarah (Leelee Sobieski); 3. The crew of the Messiah.

All three story lines are done in such a way that the viewer easily sympathizes with the very believable characters. The best done of the three is the spaceship's crew, although the most time is spent with Jenny. They all suffer from the film's only notable problem: The story lines seem somewhat rushed. Considering its broad scope, Deep Impact clearly would benefit from an extra 30 minutes to develop, especially with the underdone angle with Leo and Sarah, but the directors evidently decided two hours was all they could use.

Deep Impact, as I mentioned, lacks an A-list star, but it does feature superb performances from two of the best supporting actors of our generation: Robert Duvall (Spurgeon Tanner, captain of the spaceship) and Morgan Freeman (Tom Beck, the U.S. President). Duvall is definitely the standout of the film with an A+ performance as Tanner.

As for the other actors/actresses: Tea Leoni (playing Jenny Lerner) gets the most face time in the film and delivers a believably good performance. Maximillian Schell as Jenny's father is the one notable casting mistake; I'm not sure what they were going for with him, but they could have done better. Venessa Redgrave does well as Jenny's divorcée mother.

Elijah Wood (now a star but at the time just an up-and-comer) works very well as the teenage Leo Biederman, and Leelee Sobieski as his girlfriend Sarah gives us as good a performance as we can expect, considering how woefully underdeveloped her character is. The film arguably devotes a bit too much time to Jenny and her father and not enough to Leo and Sarah.

If you haven't seen this movie yet, it should be at the top of your must-see list. The film moves at a good pace (if a bit fast), grabs your attention at the beginning and holds it throughout, and it features a truly exceptional final 20-25 minutes. What stands out most about this movie is its human touch and sensitivity. It manages to probe an impressive array of human emotions in two hours' time, and it will leave you with plenty to think about -- although it probably will not leave you with dry eyes. There are precisely three movies I have seen that caused the room to get dusty around me (if you get my drift), and this is one of them.

In conclusion: See this movie.

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114 out of 179 people found the following review useful:

One of my favorite Sci-Fi films of all time!

10/10
Author: LebowskiT1000 from Escondido, California, USA
11 October 2002

It truly saddens me to see that this film has such a low rating on IMDB! I've seen this film several times and EVERY TIME it gets me a little misty-eyed at certain points in the film.

Since the release of this film and Armageddon, I've been unsure which of the two I liked better. I have always been leaning towards Deep Impact, so today I watched the film again to be sure. I definitely believe that Deep Impact is a better film. Although, Armageddon is a fantastic movie in it's own right.

I like Deep Impact better because I feel the story is much more realistic and slightly more interesting. Also, the acting in this film is just fantastic (but again, Armageddon was well-acted as well). After viewing the film again today, I thought "ya know, there is virtually nothing in the film that I really disliked", whereas there are a number of things in Armageddon that I really disliked!

The cast in this film is absolutely superb! You've got Robert Duvall, Tea Leoni, Elijah Wood, Vanessa Redgrave, Morgan Freeman, Maximilian Schell, James Cromwell, Ron Eldard, Jon Faverau, Laura Innes, Mary McCormack, Richard Schiff, Leelee Sobieski, Blair Underwood, Dougray Scott and Kurtwood Smith. They all did a superb job in this film and I think they all deserve a great deal of credit. I really liked that all the characters in the film were likeable. There wasn't a single one that "rubbed me the wrong way", they were all very well done characters.

I have to mention the special effects as well. They are just mind-blowing! All of the scenes with the astronauts on the comet are just superb! ...And the ship that they fly looks so cool! Also, the scene where the smaller comet hits the earth is just great! The level of detail is unbelievable in some of the scenes. You should see this film for the special effects alone.

If you like science fiction films with a great story that is quite touching at times, then by all means go see it. This film is honestly one of the better movies I've seen in quite some time. I truly hope that you enjoy the film. Thanks for reading.

-Chris

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79 out of 110 people found the following review useful:

Superior to 'Armageddon'

8/10
Author: Mel J from Dundee, Scotland
26 August 2006

It seems 1998 was the year Hollywood turned to the idea of the world being decimated by objects from outer space to fuel their disaster films. Both 'Deep Impact' and 'Armageddon' were released in that year but while I did enjoy the thrill and special effects of the latter film, I find 'Deep Impact' the superior of the two.

The film begins when a teenage amateur astronomer discover a comet on a direct collision course for the Earth. The world is then thrown into turmoil has humanity has to accept their possible extinction. While NASA sends a shuttle up with the intention to try to blow the comet to bits, the US government selects people to be saved in a cave they are building to withstand the event. Focusing on various unrelated characters, the film shows how people react differently to the destruction of all that they know.

The brilliant cast, including Morgan Freeman, Vanessa Redgrave, Robert Devall, Elijah Wood, Ron Eldard and many others, all given great depictions of their characters. It is because of their ability to bring their respective characters to life that 'Deep Impact' stands up so well as it is a very emotional and character driven story, as opposed to 'Armageddon', which relied much more on humour and special effects to sell it. Téa Leoni is the only one who doesn't shine through like her co-stars as her performance is quite bland and doesn't capture her character's turbulent emotions. However, as the rest of the cast give great performances, it's easy to overlook her. And even though there is much attention given to establishing the characters doesn't mean the film skimps when it comes to the special effects. Both the scenes in space and those on Earth when the comet hits the planet are well-handled visually. It features some of the best special effects of planetary annihilation that I've ever seen (and I'm a big fan of these disaster flicks).

What makes 'Deep Impact' rather unique in terms of disaster films is that it gives a very human side to tragedy and devastation by showing how ordinary people cope in times of crisis but it avoids the trap of being trite and overly-sentimental. It's a shame the film is so underrated then as it is a film that would appeal to sci-fi fans and those seeking an interesting story with strong characters.

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58 out of 74 people found the following review useful:

Fantastic and Moving

9/10
Author: MovieGuy2007 from United States
13 March 2007

Having seen such films as Armageddon and The Day After Tomorrow, I really expected this film to be basically an effects demo reel. Most disaster films fit into this category: their plot is loosely tied together with some major event; humanity is threatened, a group of heroes is sent to try to save the world, and mankind prevails over nature. The rest of the film is essentially nifty visual effects that don't do much to enhance the plot.

So when I saw the first half of Deep Impact, I was amazed. Apart from a brief montage of special effects in the opening sequence (a car crash that simply screams "big budget"), the movie is one of the first disaster movies I've seen that actually focuses more on the human side of the drama rather than the awesome visual effects that computers can accomplish.

Many times during the film, especially during the latter half, I felt myself touched by the realism that the actors and actresses convey. There are moments when you realize how fragile and precious life is, and that's saying something for a film of this budget.

While the visual effects are indeed impressive, there are other features that make Deep Impact a necessary film to watch. James Horner's music is strikingly similar to his previous "Titanic" and "Apollo 13" scores, but it is still hauntingly beautiful and fits the tone of the movie perfectly. Tea Leoni does a good job of portraying a newscaster attempting to cover the events surrounding her while dealing with her own personal emotions, which is undoubtedly a hard act to pull off. Elijah Wood shows his skill years before "Lord of the Rings" hit theaters. The other actors and actresses are very realistic and emotional, and the movie flows smoothly with their presence.

All in all, this movie is not one to be missed. Keep an open mind while watching this movie: don't watch it with the misconception that it's just going to be another one of those big-budget dull blockbuster films that gets churned out every summer. This one dares to avoid the seemingly standard clichés set by other films of the genre, which makes it a truly unique film to experience.

Score: 9/10

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60 out of 81 people found the following review useful:

Still good years later

8/10
Author: lillychr14 from United States
30 April 2005

I just saw this film again after several years. I feel that it was the best of all the disaster films made in recent years. Not too much cheese, a little heavy on sap but satisfying overall. It was much more realistic than Armageddon(which I think is one of the most overrated 'blockbusters' ever)There are no comic relief characters, no cheesy one-liners and no gorgeous movie stars(no offense to Tea Leoni). The solution to the problem was more real in Deep Impact and the time frame was much more believable. I like how the film focused more on what was happening on earth rather than in the spaceship. The end was interesting because the disaster wasn't totally averted so there was no cheerful hugging in the end with lame Aerosmith playing over it. The only thing that bothered me was that all of the nuclear missiles from the US and Russia had no effect on the comet. Wouldn't several hundred nukes do something? anything? and why wasn't the Messiah destroyed in the blast? So overall, good flick, deserves more credit.

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78 out of 119 people found the following review useful:

an excellent film. very emotional

9/10
Author: Dan Grant (dan.grant@bell.ca) from Toronto, Ontario
26 July 1999

What would you do if the end of the world was near? How would you react if you knew that there was no way you were going to survive what was about to happen? Would you want to survive what was about to happen? Deep Impact is an excellent film that tells the story of a giant comet that is heading towards earth and unless it is stopped it will destroy everything. It contains many inter-personal relationships, and it examines how people would react if the end was near. It doesn't get as deep as "Last Night" at examining those issues, but what it does better than Last Night and even Armageddon ( another film that I loved ) is it shows a little more about relationships. It has a father and daughter trying to patch things up before the end is upon them. It shows young love, parental love and the love for a country and the world we live in. Deep Impact had a deeper impact on me and I really admire both Hollywood summer films that came out and dealt with this issue. But Deep Impact has more to say than Armageddon does.

One of the things that I admired so much about this film was how Tea Leoni was so hell bent on uncovering a story so that she could move up in the ranks of reporting, and in the process she uncovers something bigger than any political scandal could ever be. At first she is following a tip about some senator that has retired from office rather urgently. She has transcripts with him talking about a girl named Ellie. And she is determined to uncover who Ellie is so she can embarrass the senator and quicken her pursuit to greatness. She finally confronts the senator on the dock where he is laoding a boat with what looks to be enough supplies to last for a year. She tries to bully the senator into telling her the story but he refuses. She then does some research on the Internet and finds out that Ellie wasn't the name of a woman, but an acronym for the comet. E.L.E. Extinction Level Event. She is horrified. The beginning takes up a good half an hour of the movie and it is during that thirty mintues that I became hooked. My emotions were manipulated to the point where I felt like I should be at home with my family. The direness of the situation was very well executed. And the rest of the film is on the same level. It does a great job at making us ask questions about ourselves. And we examine our own lives and wonder if we would be prepared if something like this ever happened. I realize this may be getting a little sentimental and perhaps sappy, but this film really tapped into my emotions and I think it did that to a lot of people. I highly recommend htis film for all that it is. The acting is top notch, especially from Morgan Freeman. He conveys the hurt, confusion and utter regret as the president of the United States. He knows that it is impossible to save everyone but he has to do what he can to save as many as possible. He truly is a great and gifted actor. The score is also a moving orchestra and the direction by Mimi Leder is swift and appropriatly crisp and dizzying in some ways. I have never heard of her before this, but I heard that Spielberg picked her himself for this project. And he was smart to pick her. She really does a wonderful job here.

Deep Impact is more than just a movie, it is an experience, and one that should be had by all. A wonderful, wonderful film.

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57 out of 85 people found the following review useful:

Very moving.

7/10
Author: Brian Wolters from Cabot, Arkansas
12 July 1999

I found Deep Impact to be a very good "study" on how we has humans, may react to an E.L.E. (see this movie for details on that.) The special effects were good, but the best thing about this movie was the focus on the characters. This wasn't loud and stupid as "that other asteroid movie." This film will entertain you and mostly, touch your heart. You actually feel the doom that is about to reach these people, and to me, that is good film making.

About the only thing I could pick on would be the performance of Téa Leoni. To me, she was never convincing. She seemed down and depressed all of the time, even when she was doing the news. Very odd performance.

I give this film a B+

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55 out of 83 people found the following review useful:

A great movie

9/10
Author: Mister_Anderson from King of Prussia, PA
30 January 2005

This is a great movie. I think the people who don't like it are (1) people expecting it to be a summer blockbuster popcorn movie with a million special effects, or (2) people upset because they think it's cheesy / has scientific errors. Let me address both points.

First of all, this is not a disaster movie in the style of Armageddon or Volcano or any of them. It's a movie about humanity's struggle to deal with an impending disaster. And in doing that, it succeeds. Most of the film is supported by strong talent, including Robert Duvall and Morgan Freeman. In smaller roles, Max Schell, Vanessa Redgrave, and Ron Eldard really shine. I was disappointed by Tea Leoni's acting. And Elijah Wood and Leelee Sobieski didn't really do much for me, although they weren't bad.

Second, while the movie is not standard Hollywood flair, it doesn't altogether escape the Hollywood curse. There are a few fairly ridiculous moments and plot points. HOWEVER, compared to disaster movies, I have to say this are extremely minor. To counter this, there are some very touching scenes. I don't want to give anything away here, but most of them occur near the end of the film.

This is not the best movie ever by any means, but it comes as close as a mainstream Hollywood movie dealing with the end of the world is going to get. Also, James Horner's score was terrific.

Definitely worth a watch.

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64 out of 111 people found the following review useful:

better of the two

Author: Jacob (jacob2@rocketmail.com) from Dallas, Texas, USA
11 August 1998

"Deep Impact" certainly ranks as the better of the two comet/asteroid disaster movies this summer. Unlike in "Armageddon," here you actually care about the characters, and I didn't find myself looking at my watch to see when the movie would be over. If there was one way to improve this movie, it would have been to show more scenes of Morgan Freeman (the best movie president in a while) and focus less on the plotline of the reporter and her father. Overall, though, a very entertaining film, which cannot be said for "Armageddon."

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