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"Deep Blue Sea"

Directed by Renny Harlin ("Die Hard 2").
Written by Duncan Kennedy, Donna Powers and Wayne Powers. 
Starring Saffron Burrows, Thomas Jane and Samuel L. Jackson.
Release Year:  1999 
Review Date:  7/31/99 

Folks-- 

"Jaws."  "Jaws 2."  "Jaws 3-D."  "Jaws--The Revenge."

Well, now that I think about it, the "Jaws" series is the only theatrical set of shark movies ever made.  There were other underwater scary movies, but none featuring just plain old sharks.  "Deep Blue Sea" becomes the next in a line of possible shark features, and--I hope you are sitting down for this!--it was a pretty good movie!  Let me rephrase:

That was a fuckin' good movie!

JUSTIN, COME ON NOW, PLEASE.  I SAW THE PREVIEW FOR THAT MUTHAFUCKA, AND IT LOOKED BAD...I MEAN, REAL BAD.  I'VE SEEN THAT MOVIE 100 TIMES, EXCEPT IT WAS CALLED "LEVIATHAN" LAST TIME.  AND COME ON, MAN--THAT SHOT OF LL, LOOKING ALL SCARED; IF HE DOESN'T DIE IN THE FIRST TEN MINUTES, WELL, I'M JIMMY HOFFA.  MAN, I'M OUTTA HERE!

...Phew.  Now that he's gone, I can tell you again that if you think that you've seen "Deep Blue Sea" 100 times, think again, because the writers of this movie have seen "Jaws", have seen "Alien", have seen all of the bad B-movies like it--and make sure to keep you guessing right through to the end.  And, I have “Kickass” Simon and Gordon "Money" Stokes to back me up on the fact that this one deserves the rating that I'm giving it.

A team of scientists aboard a state-of-the-art facility in the middle of the ocean are conducting tests to determine if the protein in a shark's brain can be used to fight diseases like Alzheimer's.  That's right, it is ridiculous.  But, it gives a good reason for the main financial backer of the project (Samuel L. Jackson) to come out to the facility to see just how the research is going.  Of course, as the weekend approaches--not to mention the biggest storm in the world--and the majority of the ~50 person crew goes home, the three sharks at the facility decide to go ape-shit at just the right time.  So, the eight people left on board experience some, uh, problems when night falls, and of course, are left to fight off the sharks.

I'm afraid to review this movie further, because it has some truly genuine twists and turns along the way that I am not going to give up.  But, some important notes:

-->Special effects:  amazing

-->Scare factor:  extremely high.  If you actually went against the SMRs and went to see "The Haunting" and you thought it was scary, you had better skip "Deep Blue Sea", because there are a couple of real doozies in this one (those sharks sure like flesh!).  Now, this is no "Blair Witch Project", which allows me to interject once again:  if you are at work right now reading this SMR and have not seen "BWP", leave work immediately, call in sick from your cell phone, and go see this movie!  No excuses now that it is in every theater under the sun.

-->Saffron Burrows (the research director):  fairly attractive, until a gratuitous shot of her pulling off a wet suit; then, she was hot.

-->Thomas Jane, the Christopher Lambert-lookalike who plays the shark hunter:  bad-ass!  This guy has got a future!

-->I have had six people ask me since I saw the movie:  does LL die?  I'll let you find out for yourself...but I'll just say this:  he has some of the best bad lines of the year.

Really, there are no negatives (besides the fact that all of the characters seem to be able to hold their breath for 5-10 minutes underwater in shark-infested waters while panicked--I didn't think this was possible, but it is the movies!); this is just a good, fun time at the movies.  Of course, it does feature a lot of characters getting chewed to death, but if you can get over that, you should be AG!

Rating:  $7.50 Show

 

Comments?  Drop me a line at justin@bellviewmovies.com.

 

Bellview Rating System:

"Opening Weekend":  This is the highest rating a movie can receive.  Reserved for movies that exhibit the highest level of acting, plot, character development, setting...or Salma Hayek.  Not necessarily in that order. 

"$X.XX Show":  This price changes each year due to the inflation of movie prices; currently, it is the $9.50 Show.  While not technically perfect, this is a movie that will still entertain you at a very high level.  "Undercover Brother" falls into this category; it's no "Casablanca", but you'll have a great time watching.  The $9.50 Show won't win any Oscars, but you'll be quoting lines from the thing for ages (see "Office Space"). 

"Matinee":  An average movie that merits no more than a $6.50 viewing at your local theater.  Seeing it for less than $9.50 will make you feel a lot better about yourself.  A movie like "Blue Crush" fits this category; you leave the theater saying "That wasn't too bad...man, did you see that Lakers game last night?" 

"Rental":  This rating indicates a movie that you see in the previews and say to your friend, "I'll be sure to miss that one."  Mostly forgettable, you couldn't lose too much by going to Hollywood Video and paying $3 to watch it with your sig other, but you would only do that if the video store was out of copies of "Ronin."  If you can, see this movie for free.  This is what your TV Guide would give "one and a half stars." 

"Hard Vice":  This rating is the bottom of the barrel.  A movie that only six other human beings have witnessed, this is the worst movie I have ever seen.  A Shannon Tweed "thriller," it is so bad as to be funny during almost every one of its 84 minutes, and includes the worst ending ever put into a movie.  Marginally worse than "Cabin Boy", "The Avengers" or "Leonard, Part 6", this rating means that you should avoid this movie at all costs, or no costs, EVEN IF YOU CAN SEE IT FOR FREE!  (Warning:  strong profanity will be used in all reviews of "Hard Vice"-rated movies.)

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The "fine print":
All material by Justin Elliot Bell for SMR/Bellview/bellviewmovies.com except where noted
© 1999-2009 Justin Elliot Bell This site was last updated 01/08/09