6.2/10
163,021
569 user 142 critic

Deep Impact (1998)

A comet is discovered to be on a collision course with Earth. As doomsday nears, the human race prepares for the worst.

Director:

Mimi Leder
Reviews
Popularity
1,428 ( 405)
5 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Duvall ... Spurgeon Tanner
Téa Leoni ... Jenny Lerner
Elijah Wood ... Leo Biederman
Vanessa Redgrave ... Robin Lerner
Morgan Freeman ... President Beck
Maximilian Schell ... Jason Lerner
James Cromwell ... Alan Rittenhouse
Ron Eldard ... Oren Monash
Jon Favreau ... Gus Partenza
Laura Innes ... Beth Stanley
Mary McCormack ... Andrea Baker
Richard Schiff ... Don Biederman
Leelee Sobieski ... Sarah Hotchner
Blair Underwood ... Mark Simon
Dougray Scott ... Eric Vennekor
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Storyline

Journalist Jenny Lerner is assigned to look into the background of Secretary Alan Rittenhouse who abruptly resigned from government citing his wife's ill health. She learns from his secretary that Rittenhouse was having an affair with someone named Ellie but when she confronts him, his strange reaction leads her to reconsider her story. In fact, a comet, discovered the previous year by high school student Leo Biederman and astronomer Dr. Marcus Wolf, is on a collision course with the Earth, an Extinction Level Event. A joint US-Russian team is sent to destroy the comet but should it fail, special measures are to be put in place to secure the future of mankind. As the space mission progresses, many individuals deal with their fears and ponder their future. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Oceans rise. Cities fall. Hope survives. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for intense disaster related elements and brief language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At one point, A character says "People knew about the Manhattan Project, you know, and they kept it a secret." "Manhattan Project" is also the name of one of the production companies that worked on the film. See more »

Goofs

Jenny states that each of the nukes to be used to destroy the comet possess a yield of five thousand kilotons (that's five megatons). Nuclear weapons of such a high yield would be far larger than the weapons shown. The ones we see would barely be large enough to be believable as a thermonuclear weapon's fissile "primary" that comprises the "trigger" of a high yield thermonuclear device. Even the most effectively miniaturized warheads would be at least 5 times larger. See more »

Quotes

Oren Monash: Fish. Why the hell do they call you FISH?
Spurgeon Tanner: Well, Spurgeon... Sturgeon... FISH. Took about 15 minutes my first day at the Naval Academy.
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Crazy Credits

The opening DreamWorks logo ends with the clouds in the logo fading away to show the stars in space in the background, and the title words DEEP IMPACT are filled with a view of the Earth. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Flat Earth & Other Hot Potatoes: Episode #1.20 (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

The Hole
Written by Skip Ewing & James Dean Hicks
Performed by Randy Travis
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User Reviews

 
Superior to 'Armageddon'
26 August 2006 | by cosmic_questSee all my reviews

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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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 May 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Impact See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$75,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$41,152,375, 10 May 1998

Gross USA:

$140,464,664

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$349,464,664
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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