In the dark silence of the sea during World War II, the submarine U.S.S. Tiger Shark prowls on what should be a routine rescue mission. But for the shell-shocked crew, trapped together in the sub's narrow corridors and constricted spaces, this is about to become a journey into the sensory delusions, mental deceptions and runaway fear that lurk just below the surface of the ocean and deep inside the human psyche. Written by
Holt McCallany learned how to do several yo-yo tricks for his character Loomis. Some of the tricks he performs in the film are the Brain Twister, Around the World, and Walk the Dog. His instructor, Brian Cabildo, is listed in the final credits. See more »
When they come out of the sub from the forward torpedo room they walk up a set of stairs. In submarines during the war there were no stairs out of a ship they climbed up ladders through hatches. What they walked through was really the forward torpedo loading hatch that was opened and stairs added to the sub after it was turned into a museum ship to make it convenient for tourists to enter and exit the sub. See more »
[hands coordinates to Loomis]
This is almost a day behind us, sir.
Well who are they? Americans, Brits, Italians? It doesn't even say.
Well I think we can assume they're friendly, Mr. Loomis. Besides, it doesn't appear to be a suggestion, does it.
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The only thing in the opening credits is the movie's title. Everything else is only shown after the movie is over. See more »
Below (*****) I know what you're thinking. A "B" picture about a haunted submarine? And I think it's the best flick I've seen so far this year? Well, when a "B" picture is this smart, this intricate, this well-made, this damned entertaining, then, yeah, it's the best movie I've seen so far this year.
Here's the set-up: it's 1943 in the North Atlantic, and the U.S.S. Tiger Shark picks up three survivors from a British hospital ship that was torpedoed two days earlier; the discovery that one of the survivors is a German leads to violence; and, then, really weird things start happening, all the while a German cruiser is chasing the sub down. Is a ghost trying to destroy the sub and its crew, or are they just imagining things through convenient coincidences?
Below was written by Lucas Sussman, Darren Aronofsky and the film's director, David N. Twohy; Aronofsky is the smart filmmaker behind the art-house hit Requiem for a Dream, and Twohy has consistently specialized in sophisticated "B" pictures like The Arrival and Pitch Black. Below offers up an intricate storyline that keeps both the characters and the audience guessing--when they and we aren't jumping out of our skins in terror. Twohy's direction is an example of economic brilliance--the flick charges forward, piling on the twists and scares methodically, but never gratuitously--thankfully, this is a horror flick that's more about mood than about gore--indeed, it's less in tune with modern splatterfests than it is an homage to the cerebral Val Lewton thrillers of the 1940s (like The Seventh Victim or Isle of the Dead).
And what mood this movie creates! Ian Wilson's cinematography is vibrant and chilling, and the magnificent special effects never overwhelm the story--except for a final, hauntingly beautiful shot that will linger in your memory for quite awhile.
An added bonus is the cast of smart players: Bruce Greenwood as the sub commander trying to hold his crew and himself together; Matt Davis as the wet-behind-the-ears officer not really accepted by the crew; Olivia Williams as an English nurse who is both suspect and suspicious; and Holt McCallaney as a gruff officer.
It appears that Below is being dumped by its studio, Dimension, with little advertising or fanfare; a shame, really, since it's one of the most sophisticated and highest quality pictures I've seen in quite awhile. [Rated R: Violence, language, brief nudity.]
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