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'Knew this was a one way ticket...'



Abyss TODAY'S RETRO-REVIEW: 1989's "The Abyss," starring Ed Harris, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio and Michael Biehn. Written and directed by James Cameron.

THE PLOT: A civilian dive crew searches for a downed Navy submarine and encounters an alien species on the ocean floor. (Whoops, hope I didn't give away anything there.)

MAYBE YOU REMEMBER: The underwater scenes have an outer-space quality to them, thanks to George Lucas' Industrial Light & Magic's special effects -- and the use of a 7-million gallon water tank (from an uncompleted nuclear power plant .

SURELY YOU CAN'T FORGET: When Harris is forced to breathe in an oxygenated fluid to prepare for a deep dive, anyone who has seen this movie feels like they're drowning too.

WHAT THE CRITICS SAID: "The ending ... is like UFO sightings -- best ignored. Before this voyage plummets into Stevie Spielberg's locker, the human stuff is more than worth the descent, particularly the on-the-rocks marriage between hardy underwater rigger Harris and no-nonsense rig designer Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio." -- The Washington Post

WHY WE LOVE IT ANYWAY: Because it's like "Alien" meets "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea," only with Capt. Nemo being played by a female and no killer squid. Actually, a giant squid would have helped.


5. "So raise your hand if you think that was a Russian water-tentacle."

4. "It's not easy being a cast-iron b--ch. It takes discipline, and years of training... A lot of people don't appreciate that."

3. "Virgil, you wiener."

2. "She didn't leave me. She just left me behind."

1. "Knew this was a one way ticket, but you know I had to come. Love you wife."

[Last modified: Wednesday, June 9, 2010 2:37pm]


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