Tidal Wave: No Escape (TV Movie 1997) Poster

(1997 TV Movie)

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Something is just not natural with a series of tidal waves.
michaelRokeefe6 August 2005
This made-for-TV drama is near being a disaster itself. The story line is just not believable enough to get very excited about. The CGI tsunamis look cool, but not fearsome. When destructive tidal waves put the coast of California in harm's way; retired weapons expert and Nobel Prize winner John Wahl(Corbin Bernsen)is suspected of instigating the peril. Oceanographer Jessica Weaver(Julianne Phillips)is about the only one in the scientific community to feel differently and offers to help Wahl prove his innocence.

Bernsen does the best he can; and Phillips is definitely nice to look at. The two are just not enough to make this movie any better than it is. Rounding out the cast are: Harve Presnell, Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs and Gregg Henry, who is so easy to dislike. The surf may be up; but the urge to hit the beach is just not there.
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pretty bad all over
TheIncredibleHolg7 August 2002
My TV magazine announced this movie as having nice special effects. Where the heck did they get that idea?! The CGI waves never looked remotely real because they did not integrate with their surroundings. Scenes such as people in a boat on the sea were so obviously shot in a studio as I last saw them in 50's movies.

Add to that an implausible plot (though the basic premise was OK), cardboard characters, pseudoscientific gobbledygook that makes even the layperson's hair stand on end, and wooden acting especially be the supporting cast, and you have "Tidal Wave". Even disaster fetishists expect something better!

On the plus side, the female lead, Julianne Phillips, is nice to look at (I was surprised to learn she is Bruce Springsteen's ex-wife), and both she and Corbin Bernsen do their best, but this movie cannot be saved. 3 out of 10.
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Bad ending!
slbp_9921 June 2000
The ending could of been better, much better. The special effects were OK. I would not buy this movie at all. It might be good if you just rent it. It might be a good sleeper for some people. NOW, to all the disaster movie people (people who like disaster movies) you might want to see it. I am one of those but the movie was OK.
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pure science fiction
bmw_smg_cabrio12 July 2007
have just finished seeing this movie on the science-fiction channel, most of the move seems OK, the actors are doing an decent job of rescuing this movie, selecting celebrities for a movie is not always a warranty for making a movie good.the special effects are OK, except one involving waves meeting each other, with the intended purpose in this movie to be causing a cancellation of both waves. This can only happen in Hollywood, where natural laws of physics sometimes seem non-existing. everybody with a little education know that two waves moving towards each other cause the amplitude at meeting point to be the sum of each wave, and that each wave will continue at same direction as before meeting other waves.
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truly awful in almost every way except for Colby...
jdcapshew5 October 2008
I didn't realize that this ultra low budget laugher was made in 1997 when Corben Bernsen did his best to hold in that burgeoning midriff. He looked truly miserable in the wetsuit surfing scenes riding some scary 2 foot swells. Obviously those were not the tidal waves. I can understand as the cast was saddled with one of the worst screenplays ever, silly junk science gibberish and cheesy effects. The only actors to phone in credible performances were Harve Presnell as the hilariously over-the-top Snidely Whiplash-ish Stanley Schiff who was making the tidal waves happen and Colby the dog, who sadly gets snuffed out by a tidal wave.
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The Special Effects Were The Best And Worst Parts Of This Movie.
BigHardcoreRed2 February 2005
Tidal Wave: No Escape begins with two tidal waves or tsunamis which seemingly coincidentally strike one after the other. One in Japan and one in the U.S. It is later learned that they were most likely man made and it soon becomes apparent when the man behind the waves demands 1 billion dollars. The only question to those in the movie, who are constantly pointing their fingers at the wrong guy, is who is really causing the tidal waves and how? We, the viewers, are let in on the perpetrator pretty early, so very little guess work is involved for us. This is more of a sit back and enjoy the special effects without using your brain type of movie.

Speaking of the special effects, how can they be so good and so bad at the same time? The tidal waves themselves were awesome. Having never even seen a picture of a real tidal wave before it crashes, this looked pretty realistic to me. So how they managed to create a giant wave that wreaks havoc through a few cities and why they need an obvious blue screen on other shots make the movie so horribly sub-par.

Corbin Bernsen, Julianne Phillips and Gregg Henry star here, but that really does not matter. The movie and these roles were so one dimensional, that nearly anyone could have played them. Gregg Henry should have steered clear entirely because he is a better actor than required here, as he displayed in Payback. This is definitely one for the special effects only. 6/10
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average low budget disaster movie
disdressed1212 March 2007
i just couldn't get all that excited about this movie.i mean,there are a few scenes of tidal waves,which look okay,i guess,but not spectacular.to me,,the parts of the movie involving the 2 main characters,seemed like an episode of moonlighting,more than anything else.and overall,the movie is the 2 characters trying to solve a mystery.there is an interesting angle in the movie,which i won't give away here.and as i mentioned earlier in a comment on'Killer Flood:the Day the Damn Broke',i had just watched 2 big budget disaster movies,'10.5'and its sequel '10.5:Apocalypse,which are to me,the best disaster movies i have seen so far.i guess 'Tidal Wave.No Escape',is about average,so 5/10 is my rating
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Funniest Movie EVER!
OrangePineapples5 January 2005
This movie was definitely the funniest movie I have ever seen. I laughed until I cried.

Now, this movie wasn't meant to be funny, but the special effects were so awful, and the acting so atrocious, you can't help but think this movie is hilarious.

Not to mention how cliché this movie becomes. You can see everything coming. There were some great one-liners as well, such as "Is your beer getting warm?" Pure genius.

The premise of the movie is extremely funny as well, and if you're looking for a good laugh at a bad movie, this is the ultimate movie for it.

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Ultra-cheesy movie disaster
Leofwine_draca22 June 2012
While I was idly flicking through TV channels one afternoon I stumbled upon TIDAL WAVE: NO ESCAPE, a 1997 TV movie starring Corbin Bernsen, I decided to give it a whirl. My interest in the film was mainly generated by my suspicion that the title was a misnomer and I was soon proved correct: it's not spoiling things too much to say that the lead characters DO escape from tidal waves in this film, multiple times too.

As cheesy B-movie go, this one isn't too bad and at least there's plenty of incident to keep you watching. Bernsen (THE DENTIST), playing probably the world's most unlikely Nobel Prize winner, has to figure out the science (it's dodgy) behind some inexplicable tsunami disasters and yet still has time to romance a pretty colleague.

What follows is a mix between low-budget disaster antics and wronged man thriller; the latter is developed because of the lack of budget to focus too much on the disaster side of things, so the writers throw in a human villain and have Bernsen going on the run for much of the time. Saying there, there are some pretty silly CGI-enhanced moments, like when Bernsen attempts to out-drive an incoming tsunami and decides to take a road running parallel to the shore rather than inland.

This is hardly art, but it is a damn sight better than KILLER FLOOD: THE DAY THE DAM BROKE, I have to say. And no, that isn't a down-on-his-luck George Miller of MAD MAX fame directing, just a namesake.
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