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      The Abyss

      1989, Sci-fi/Adventure, 2h 19m

      53 Reviews 100,000+ Ratings

      What to know

      Critics Consensus

      The utterly gorgeous special effects frequently overshadow the fact that The Abyss is also a totally gripping, claustrophobic thriller, complete with an interesting crew of characters. Read critic reviews

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      The Abyss  Photos

      The Abyss (1989) The Abyss (1989)

      Movie Info

      Ed Harris and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio are formerly married petroleum engineers who still have some issues to work out. They are drafted to assist a gung-ho Navy SEAL (Michael Biehn) with a top-secret recovery operation: a nuclear sub has been ambushed and sunk, under mysterious circumstances, in some of the deepest waters on Earth.

      • Rating: PG-13

      • Genre: Sci-fi, Adventure

      • Original Language: English

      • Director: James Cameron

      • Producer: Gale Anne Hurd

      • Writer: James Cameron

      • Release Date (Theaters):  wide

      • Release Date (Streaming):

      • Box Office (Gross USA): $54.3M

      • Runtime:

      • Distributor: 20th Century Fox

      • Production Co: Lightstorm Entertainment, Pacific Western

      • Sound Mix: Dolby Stereo, Magnetic Stereo 6 Track, Surround, Dolby A, Dolby SR

      • Aspect Ratio: 70mm, Scope (2.35:1)

      Cast & Crew

      Ed Harris
      Michael Biehn
      Leo Burmester
      Todd Graff
      J.C. Quinn
      Kimberly Scott
      Christopher Murphy
      Adam Nelson
      Dick Warlock
      Ken Jenkins
      Alan Silvestri
      Mikael Salomon
      Conrad Buff IV
      Joel Goodman
      Howard E. Smith
      Leslie Dilley
      Anne Kuljian
      Deborah Everton
      Kathryn Fenton
      Emanuel Millar

      News & Interviews for The Abyss

      Critic Reviews for The Abyss

      Audience Reviews for The Abyss

      • Jun 05, 2020

        From James Cameron comes the exciting sci-fi adventure The Abyss. When a Navy submarine is lost a deep sea research team is tasked with assisting in the emergency recovery effort, but during their operations they encounter a mysterious alien life form. Ed Harris, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, and Michael Biehn lead the cast and give excellent performances. And the special effects are especially good; creating a fascinating vision of the ocean floor and the creatures that inhabit it. Also, the sets are incredibly well-done; giving a real sense of a lived-in, confined underwater space. Additionally, Cameron's directing does an extraordinary job at heightening the tension and suspense. Full of mystery and intrigue, The Abyss is a thrilling journey into the unknown fathoms of the deep.

        Super Reviewer
      • Feb 17, 2018

        A classic film from James Cameron that I am only seeing for the first time. Engaging and suspenseful, with a great cast. The groundbreaking CG also helps and would serve to be later perfected in Terminator 2. Very enjoyable.

        Super Reviewer
      • Feb 17, 2016

        [Director's Cut] -- Moments of brilliance only draw attention to what could have been, rather than what is. The focus of the movie on the relationship of the two main characters really eats away at the much more interesting prospect of encountering the unknown.

        Super Reviewer
      • Jun 24, 2014

        I hadn't remember this one very well but I still have it in glorious VHS format. I checked the extended version of it, and let's just say it became quite clear what was added or removed. I didn't remember any of the russian tension going on and that awesome wave scene at the end. The Abyss transformed into a great looking, claustrophobic underwater thriller, with a nice alien mistery to a cautionary tale with decent results, albeit heavy handed (this is James Cameron after all). Maybe the whole SEALS business is excused but The Abyss is still a very entertaining and well made sci-fi thriller flick.

        Super Reviewer

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