The Abyss
The Abyss (1989)

The crew of an experimental, high-tech submersible is called into action to investigate a mysterious nuclear submarine crash. A series of strange encounters leads the crew to suspect the accident was caused by an extraterrestrial craft, and… More

Directed By:
Rated: PG-13
Running Time:
Release Date: November 7, 2000
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Critic Score: 89% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

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.

Duane Byrge
Hollywood Reporter

Colossally ambitious, this logistically boggling and technically brilliant film from writer-director James Cameron is a visual tour de force, featuring overall, the greatest underwater sequences ever seen on film.

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Geoff Andrew
Time Out

This overlong concoction is scuppered by dire dialogue, histrionic performances and maudlin sentimentality.

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Nick Davis
Nick's Flick Picks

The Abyss gains in some ways from its own Achilles heels, in a way most movies don't... its formal technique, its reckless obsessiveness, and its gutsy emotionalism are what I can't stop turning over in my mind.

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Variety Staff

A firstrate underwater suspenser with an otherworldly twist, The Abyss suffers from a payoff unworthy of its buildup.

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Peter Travers
Rolling Stone

Anyone looking for a discouraging word about this stupendously exciting and emotionally engulfing film should read no further. The Abyss confirms James Cameron as a world-class filmmaker.

Tim Brayton
Antagony & Ecstasy

One need not be a Cameron acolyte to recognise that The Abyss has aged better than some of the films that outshone it back in the day.

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Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader

The attempt to extract the essences of several genres (cold-war submarine thriller, love story, Disney fantasy, pseudomystical SF in the Spielberg mode) and mix them together ultimately leads to giddy incoherence.

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Desson Thomson
Washington Post

The human stuff is more than worth the descent.

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Brian Orndorf

The movie was a bear to make and it shows onscreen, parading around a series of mesmerizing set-pieces that look deliciously hard-earned in ways our current CG-drenched filmmaking climate never allows.

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More reviews for The Abyss

Flixster Audience Score: 83% Flixster User Reviews
Carlos Magalhćes
What makes this film even more absorbing than its spellbinding visual effects is the strong sense of urgency and danger created in such a suffocating underwater… More
Raymond Wieser
James Cameron never fails to criticize humanity in his work, but the message here is plain and simple so that everyone can understand. Seriously cool and… More
Alex roy
After the phenomenal action classic, Terminator, James Cameron pushed the boundaries yet again with astounding special effects with The Abyss. This is a special… More
Manu Gino
A place on earth more awesome than anywhere in space. Truly an epic film which I greatly enjoyed! Amazing story and superb special effects for that time which… More
Wahida K
The Abyss is one of the Wonderful and Beautiful Alien Movies I have ever seen. I liked the Idea Aliens Underwater.
Sergio Garcia
If you haven't seen the Abyss what a hell are you waiting for. James Cameron with an outstanding story and a previusalization of the new era of special… More