Dominic Quesada and Johnny Gray, two SCUBA divers searching for sunken treasure off the coast of Cuba, think they've hit the jackpot when they find a 17th century ship on the sea floor. They need working capital however and Johnny is ready to hock his boat but his wife Theresa thinks they're off on another wild scheme that will leave them all poorer than when they started. She comes around however and are soon joined by Gloria, whose boat they will use and Father Cannon, a university professor and archaeologist. Although Dominic hasn't been completely honest with his partners, they may in fact be in the area of a major treasure ship. When they do find it, the ship is teetering on the edge of a 300 foot cliff and dangerous for even the most experienced divers.Written by
The final hit song to emerge from an RKO feature was the sensual instrumental cha cha, "Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White" (music by noted French composer Louiguy), performed in the film by Dámaso Pérez Prado's renowned Latin band while Jane Russell danced. Billed as Perez Prado and His Orchestra on the RCA Victor single, Mr. Prado triumphed at the number-one "Billboard" spot for 10 consecutive weeks between April 30 and July 2, 1955. The same year on Coral Records, crooner Alan Dale (who did not appear in the movie) charted with a fourteenth-place vocal version (lyrics by Mack David). A '55 Decca release of the ditty by Guy Lombardo and His Royal Canadians featured vocalist Bill Flanagan. Actually, the song wasn't brand new in 1955. Singles had been on record racks in 1951 from Georgia Gibbs on Mercury, Cindy Lord on the MGM label, and Jimmy Dorsey and His Orchestra, with singers Pat O'Connor and Sandy Evans, on Columbia. See more »
Richard Egan and Gilbert Roland set off an underwater explosion to blow the door off a strong room of an old ship. The ship, which is balanced on the edge of a reef, shakes and a large piece pf the reef breaks off but Jane Russell, say on the edge of a hatchway doesn't move. See more »
Those sand shrimps weren't used to entertaining visitors. There must have been a thousand of them - chattering like old ladies on the porch of some hotel. And where there was that many sand shrimps, there was plenty of sand.
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Underwater was allegedly set in Cuba, but actually photographed on the Kona Coast of Hawaii, was the last time that Jane Russell worked for Howard Hughes. The mysterious industrialist would shortly be getting rid of RKO Studios and RKO itself would shortly go Underwater after that.
The site of Jane Russell even in a conservative one piece bathing suit was enough to delight the male members of the audience with those twin weapons of mass destruction Jane sported. But if you got around to listening to Jane she drifted in and out of an atrocious Spanish accent. There was no reason to cast her as Hispanic so why she was will remain a mystery.
Like his aerial films Howard Hughes took some really good care with the lavish Underwater photography and it remains the best feature of Underwater, even though the stuff photographed on Kona was supplemented by scenes done in a large tank.
All that though just to tell a rather routine tale of four treasure hunters, Jane Russell, Richard Egan, Gilbert Roland, and Lori Nelson who hunt for and discover an ancient Spanish Galleon loaded with gold bars. But also on board is a solid gold larger than life size statue of Jesus also adorned in jewels that was lost at sea to the Roman Catholic Church. Along for the ride is Jesuit scholar Robert Keith.
The four and Keith also run afoul of shark hunters/smugglers/pirates led by Joseph Calleia. How the plot resolves itself frankly borders on the ridiculous.
But the Underwater photography and the Jane photography make Underwater worthwhile viewing.
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