The Abyss

The Abyss

James Cameron (1989)

12 Certificate


Our Score
For some, this was James Cameron's Waterworld, a bloated, sentimental epic from the king of hi-tech thrillers. Some of the criticism was deserved, but it remains a fascinating folly, a spectacular and often thrilling voyage to the bottom of the sea. Ed Harris stars as the leader of an underwater team working for an oil company that is pressed into service to rescue the crew of a crippled submarine. But they soon begin to wonder if they are the only life forms in the vicinity. Harris is great in a rare leading-man role and there is first-rate support from Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, as his estranged partner, and The Terminator's Michael Biehn, as the unstable marine commander. Cameron excels in cranking up the tension within the cramped quarters and the effects are awe-inspiring and deservedly won an Oscar. It's only marred by being overlong and by its sentimental attachment to aliens.


An American nuclear submarine is sunk after a collision with a mysterious object, and the US government asks oil workers to help with the rescue. However, when they and a Navy Seal team arrive at the location of the vessel, a series of strange incidents leads to an encounter with aliens living in the depths. James Cameron's sci-fi thriller, starring Ed Harris, Michael Biehn and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio.

Cast & Crew

Bud Brigman Ed Harris
Lindsey Brigman Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio
Lieutenant Coffey Michael Biehn
Catfish De Vries Leo Burmester
Alan "Hippy" Carnes Todd Graff
Jammer Willis John Bedford Lloyd
"Sonny" Dawson J C Quinn
Lisa "One Night" Standing Kimberly Scott
Lew Finler Captain Kidd Brewer Jr
Wilhite George Robert Klek
Schoenick Christopher Murphy
Ensign Monk Adam Nelson
Bendix Chris Elliott
Barnes Michael Beach
Director James Cameron
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: 20th Century Fox Film Co. LtdGuidance: Violence. Available on: video and DVD