9 Apr 2009
Deep Rising (1997)
This one of my clear favourites when in comes to modern creature features. Now lets be upfront and honest from the get go; The CGI is ropey, the acting in places is awkward, and the characters are for the most part irritating like bum rash.
However! The set up is great, big monster on a cruise ship. The source material draws on modern genre success stories like Alien, Aliens, and Jaws with a nod to old classics like It Came From Beneath the Sea. And perhaps best of all director Sommers succeeds in the execution of a good solid monster film, keeping the star attraction under wraps until the end, and using the claustrophobic nature of the ship’s mazy layout and general sense of isolation to realise the film's maximum potential. What’s more there are some good kills, plenty of the red stuff, and proof that modern day monsters don’t need to be destroying New York to be interesting. And while Treat Williams’ catch phrase ‘Now What?’ is more annoying than it is clever and rememberable, he’s a solid lead whose rapport with leading lady Famke Janssen is just feisty enough. Plus there’s a little nod to King Kong at the very end, which has been misread by many as a sequel ending, rather this is a wink to creature feature fans and an in-joke that, in this film, the protagonists will never escape the world of (movie) monsters they have found themselves caught up in.
The Judge of the Court of Deadly Movies presiding, his verdict: Like a third topping on your burger, I find you, Deep Rising, guilty but good.