Deep Blue Sea Review (1999)


My History With the Film:
I bought Deep Blue Sea on DVD back in the late 90’s just because it was on DVD. DVD was a new thing, and if a movie looked halfway decent or was cheap, I bought it. To be honest, hearing the plot about intelligent sharks and seeing Renny Harlin’s name directing is enough for me to avoid this film. But the collector in me took a chance on a film that was way better than it had any right being.

I’ve revisited the film a few times over the years and most recently in the fall of 2017. The movie is still an absolute blast and holds up well.

What The Film Is About (Non-Spoiler):
An ocean based research station comes under attack by test sharks for an Alzheimer’s vaccination.

What I Liked About It:
-I love sharks and shark movies like everyone else. Sadly, most of the time, they are cheaply done or utilize horrible CGI. Deep Blue Sea holds up surprisingly well for the most part, and the sharks are believable.

-The ensemble cast for this movie is awesome. It’s a combination on paper that shouldn’t work, but just does. This film features: Thomas Jane (The Punisher), LL Cool J, Aida Turturro (The Sopranos), Michael Rappaport (Justified), Stellen Skarsgard (Thor/Good Will Hunting), Samuel L. Jackson (Pretty much everything ever made), and the wonderful Saffron Burrows (Troy).

-That scene. I don’t have to say more. If you’ve seen the movie, you know what I’m talking about. If you haven’t, please don’t read anything else on the internet about Deep Blue Sea or it’ll be ruined for you.

-All of the scenes featuring LL Cool J and the bird are awesome. It provided some fantastic comic relief and really made you respect LL’s acting career.

-The tension in this film is great, especially in the scene where they attempt to biopsy the brain.

-The film is full of action with likable characters that you want to see survive.

-The set is amazing.

What I Didn't Like About It:
-This is a great movie that I’ve never heard someone say they didn’t enjoy. However, you do have to check your mind at the door when you go into it. This is a fun action packed shark film, nothing more.

-The last twenty minutes drags a little, although it all does end nicely.

Additional Notes:
-A sequel is currently filming for the SyFy channel.

-Thomas Jane has gone on to do some other memorable horror roles in The Mist and 1922.

-The license plate pulled from the shark’s mouth is the same one from Jaws.

-Thomas Jane actually swam with one of the sharks, but was only allowed to do so once he finished filming all his other scenes.


-The set was at the bottom of a huge tank on Stage 2 at Fox Studios Baja in Mexico, where Titanic was filmed. It was the same stage that held the grand staircase and dining area. It's the biggest indoor tank in the world, 200 by 500 feet and 40 foot deep. After Renny Harlin’s experience with Cutthroat Island, he wanted to film on the most controllable set possible.

-The submarine from Sphere can be found in this movie, as well as the sea plane from Six Days, and Seven Nights.

Rating:
Deep Blue Sea is my second favorite shark movie. It’s a little over-the-top but a ton of fun and provides some real scares. I enjoyed revisiting Deep Blue Sea a lot and I have a feeling I’ll be watching this again in the future. Renny Harlin did an excellent job and the cast really put everything into their roles for this film. It’s nice to see that many of them went onto bigger and better things.

I rate Deep Blue Sea as an three and a half out of five and say it’s a must own.

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