Aliens Of The Deep

"Very Good"

Aliens Of The Deep Review


Ever since mega-blockbuster director James Cameron made The Abyss, he seems to have had deep-sea fever. And ever since he scored cajillions of dollars on T2 and Titanic, he's had enough capital to make his Richard-Branson-inspired adventurer dreams come true.

Post-Titanic, Cameron made a 3-D documentary about exploring the wreck of the real sunken luxury liner, titled Ghosts of the Abyss; and then later released another wreck-dive chronicle, Expedition: Bismarck. Now, he takes to the breach once more in Aliens of the Deep, an often-incredible, sometimes-annoying 3-D IMAX adventure that finds Cameron seeking out the creepy crawlies that teem around the ocean bottom's heat vents.

(By the way, what's up with these titles? Is True Lies of the Marine Mammals next? Sheesh.)

At the core of Aliens of the Deep are some of the most awe-inspiring images of the very mysterious, deepest, darkest parts of our planet - ocean trenches - and the creatures that thrive there. And, honestly, the 3-D is pretty outrageous at times, like when you feel as if you're immersed in a swarm of white vent shrimp or when you're gazing upon the hypnotic undulations of a finned cephalopod. That extra depth adds a great deal to standard dive photography, like Jacques Cousteau on steroids.

But while you're likely to be grateful for Cameron capturing this incredible footage, it won't take long for you to tire of his constant chatter, narrating nearly every minute of the film with his inane "That's the most amazing thing ever"-isms. James, just shut up!

Helping him to annoy us are several scientists who are along for the ride. Cameron says that he hand-picked this young and eager bunch - including an astrobiologist, a marine biologist, a planetary scientist, and a geologist - for their expertise and teaching skills, in order to draw parallels between the search for life deep under the sea and for life deep in outer space. "Cameron's kids" are fairly interesting when they're discussing their science, but get as annoying as their benefactor once they break into "oohs" and "aahs." Obviously, Cameron would never bother to edit any of that down.

Finally, he hits us with one of his classic clunker endings, going right off the 3-D deep end. (Spoiler alert here, for anyone who cares.) In his desperate grasp at the sea-space comparison, he presents his CGI vision of an underwater city at the bottom of a sub-ice ocean on an alien world. Then, he places his real wonder-kid scientists in the scene, interacting with the CGI swimming ETs. Please, Jimbo, does every feature need special effects, especially when such a budget-looking segment has to compete with such awesome real-world wildlife?

Obviously, in my view, the answer is no. And I would've rated this film higher, if Cameron hadn't marred his natural-world chronicle with far too much of his imagination. Some things are just better left alone. Fortunately, most of Aliens of the Deep stands on its own merits, and is definitely worth the price of admission. Even if you have to wear the stupid glasses.

The DVD includes the 45-minute IMAX version (not in 3-D, obviously) plus an extended cut that's over twice as long. If you want to hear about all the problems on the boat and hear even more from Cameron's kids, you'll love the supersize version.

The enemy of my anemone is my friend.



Aliens Of The Deep

Facts and Figures

Run time: 100 mins

In Theaters: Thursday 25th August 2005

Box Office USA: $8.3M

Distributed by: Buena Vista Distribution

Production compaines: Walt Disney Pictures, Walden Media

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 84%
Fresh: 51 Rotten: 10

IMDB: 6.5 / 10

Cast & Crew

Starring: Anatoly M. Sagalevitch as Himself, as Herself

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Cars 3 Movie Review

Cars 3 Movie Review

It's been six years since the last Cars movie (there were two Planes movies in...

The Beguiled Movie Review

The Beguiled Movie Review

In her inimitable loose style, Sofia Coppola remakes the 1971 Clint Eastwood movie from a...

War for the Planet of the Apes Movie Review

War for the Planet of the Apes Movie Review

The surprisingly thoughtful prequel trilogy comes to a powerful conclusion with this robust, dramatic thriller,...

It Comes At Night Movie Review

It Comes At Night Movie Review

This sharply original horror film not only approaches its premise from an unexpected angle, but...

Okja Movie Review

Okja Movie Review

As Tilda Swinton reteams with her Snowpiercer director, Korea's Bong Joon Ho, it's perhaps unsurprising...

Spider-Man: Homecoming Movie Review

Spider-Man: Homecoming Movie Review

This may be the third reboot of this franchise in 15 years, risking audience exhaustion,...

Despicable Me 3 Movie Review

Despicable Me 3 Movie Review

Actually the fourth film in the series (don't forget the prequel Minions), this animated super-villain...

Advertisement
Baby Driver Movie Review

Baby Driver Movie Review

Wildly energetic and so cool it hurts, this action movie has been put together in...

All Eyez On Me Movie Review

All Eyez On Me Movie Review

There's a clear sense that this Tupac Shakur biopic is hoping to build on the...

Hampstead Movie Review

Hampstead Movie Review

Deliberately appealing to older audiences, this undemanding comedy-drama comes with a hint of social relevance...

The Book of Henry Movie Review

The Book of Henry Movie Review

Apparently, this offbeat script had been making the rounds in Hollywood for some 20 years...

Transformers: The Last Knight Movie Review

Transformers: The Last Knight Movie Review

With this fifth Transformers movie, it seems clear that Michael Bay is still trying to...

Churchill Movie Review

Churchill Movie Review

This drama about the iconic British prime minister tells a darkly personal story set over...

Gifted Movie Review

Gifted Movie Review

This is one of those films that dances right up to the edge of soapy...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.