Search - The Abyss (Special Edition) on DVD

The Abyss (Special Edition)
The Abyss
Special Edition
Actors: Ed Harris, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Michael Biehn, Leo Burmester, Todd Graff
Director: James Cameron
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense
PG-13     2003     2hr 18min

A civilian oil rig crew is recruited to conduct a search and rescue effort when a nuclear submarine mysteriously sinks. One diver (Ed Harris) soon finds himself on a spectacular odyssey 25,000 feet below the ocean's surfa...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Ed Harris, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Michael Biehn, Leo Burmester, Todd Graff
Director: James Cameron
Creators: Mikael Salomon, James Cameron, Conrad Buff IV, Howard E. Smith, Joel Goodman, Gale Anne Hurd, Van Ling
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense
Sub-Genres: James Cameron, Drama, Aliens, Mystery & Suspense
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Format: DVD - Color,Letterboxed
DVD Release Date: 09/23/2003
Original Release Date: 08/09/1989
Theatrical Release Date: 08/09/1989
Release Year: 2003
Run Time: 2hr 18min
Screens: Color,Letterboxed
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaDVD Credits: 2
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 3
Edition: Special Edition
MPAA Rating: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Languages: English
Subtitles: English, Spanish
See Also:

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Member Movie Reviews

Daniel A. (Daniel) from EUGENE, OR
Reviewed on 2/8/2010...
Creative underwater sequences and good direction made this movie work. However, every character was highly typical and too many 80's dialog cliches. This seemed to try and be suspenseful so many times that it eventually lost the effect. The special effects and unique premise save this.
RD C. (allepaca) from TEMPE, AZ
Reviewed on 11/24/2009...
Cameron does Spielberg, with a dose of "The Day the Earth Stood Still"... AKA: "Close Encounters under 2 miles of ocean". Spielberg-like effects, plot-line, and uplifting ending... perfect for family viewing (assuming you don't mind some of the anti-military subtext.) I don't think Cameron could have done a more effective homage to Spielberg's style if he'd wanted to.

A very big-budget, grandiose hollywood epic, with pretty decent acting (Ed Harris is particularly good, as usual), a typically implausible plot-line, the expected zip-zow special effects, clich├ęs aplenty, and a basically sappy premise.

Having said all that-- I think it's a perfectly wonderful flick, head and shoulders above the standard "blast the bugs" crap that passes for sci-fi, these days. It's the kind of movie that we like to 'go to the movies' for.

The sheer effort required to make an epic of this nature is impressive enough, but the story really is pretty compelling, as well. It keeps you more than entertained enough to get you through its 2 1/2 to 3 hour length (depending on the version). Less-than-subtle references to the paranoid and violent sides of human nature are, unfortunately, as accurate as ever... and therefore no less valid for being used so often. And the hopeful, uplifting ending should be enough to assuage any but the most cynical of viewers.

The plot does make a LOT more sense in the longer "special edition" (i.e. director's cut), where much footage that was removed in the initial release (due to intrusive studio executives), was restored. The concerns and intent of the "ET's" are much more obvious, and therefore more plausible. This is the version to get.

Suspend your skepticism, round up the kids, break out the popcorn, and sit down for a fascinating adventure. Then go back to your boring job, and wish that the world was a more fair and magical place....

Movie Reviews

The Abyss - A true Science Fiction classic!
K. Wyatt | St. Louis, MO United States | 01/28/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

""The Abyss" is one of the most intriguing Sci-Fi/action movies to have ever been made. From the very beginning of this exceptional movie to the end, for the first time viewer or for those that have watched it many times, it is a highly inventive and an ultimately captivating movie. Although there have been many movies made about events under the surface of the ocean, few can match up to the intensity that "The Abyss" is laden with.One of the more intriguing aspects about the edition of "The Abyss" that I'm reviewing today or any other version that contains both the original theatrical release and the Special Edition with twenty eight minutes of additional footage is how the whole tone of the conclusion of the film changes between the two. This is not something that I wish to go in to in great detail; suffice it to say that the Special Edition gives a whole new meaning to this classic movie.From Ed Harris to Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio to Michael Biehn and all of the other marvelous actors that performed in this film, they all deserve high praise for their collective efforts in creating this Science Fiction classic. It isn't too often that Ed Harris or Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio gets the lead roles in films but in the case of "The Abyss," they both proved that they were quite ready for such roles.In 1984 first time director, James Cameron gave millions of movies fans just the first taste of his directing talents when he burst on the scene with "The Terminator" which started a run of extraordinarily successful movies culminating in "Titanic" which is one of the highest grossing films of all times. "The Abyss" was the third in this run of incredible movies and arguably the most intriguing of them all as the script, while being science fiction and adventure is "that much more" inventive than the rest of those films. In addition to James Cameron's exceptional talents on this film, the musical score by Alan Silvestri makes "The Abyss" that much better, greatly enhancing every scene!The Premise:Welcome to what appears to be the mid eighties or early nineties and we have an American nuclear submarine that is patrolling an abysmal trench in the Atlantic. Their tracking something that is going faster than anything they've ever seen before and suddenly they lose all power as the "thing" goes by; a minute or so later, all power is restored but it's too late, they slam right into the abysmal wall and the ship goes down, fortunately for them, they get a beacon off before the bridge is consumed by water... Some twenty odd miles away is a deep sea oil rig operation with a control ship on the surface and an underwater station at about fifteen hundred feet below the surface. The US Navy comes in and wishes to send a SEAL team down and use the station and the crew to find the sub...What follows from there is one of the most intriguing, captivating and enthralling Science Fiction films ever made that only gets better every time you see it and if you've never watched it before, you will most certainly be blown away by what director James Cameron created in this film!I highly recommend this film to any and all who are fans of Science Fiction or fans of very good dramatic films with a "splash" of Sci-Fi in them. {ssintrepid}Special Features:-Theatrical Version
-Special Edition with 28 minutes of additional footage.
-Audio Commentary for both versions.
-Collector's edition 12 page booklet.
-Bio's for all of the actors, director and several others.
-DVD-ROM content.
-60-minute documentary - "Under Pressure: Making the Abyss."
-James Cameron's complete screenplay.
-Multi-angles of pseudopod sequence.
-3 DVD-ROM games.
-Extensive storyboards and original concept art and more!"
Christopher Reid | CA USA | 06/06/2007
(1 out of 5 stars)

"Dazed and confused!!!!! I feel like I am in the Abyss!!!!! What happened to the Anamorphic? The box cover even states anamorphic? What is Fox up to? I was so excited that all of the advertising for this edition stated anamorphic, but I was left so violated when I discovered that I had yet spent more money for the same version that I had on the 5 star edition. Fox please have someone check this stuff before you fool the public!"
Excellent Movie - Excellent DVD
ericakb | 07/06/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I couldn't wait for The Abyss Special Edition to be released on DVD. I already have the Special Edition Widescreen released on VHS in 1995 with the 10 minute featurette on the making of The Abyss. But as soon as I bought the DVD - I went home to watch it. You can choose to watch the theatrical version or the Special Edition with 28 minutes of additional footage. The commentary is visable via subtitles in the black bar. Which is great. For anyone who hasn't already seen this movie - it's an action-adventure/sci-fi/romance. Basically it's for everybody.Ed Harris play Bud Brigman, the toolpusher on an underwater drilling platform designed by his soon-to-be-ex-wife, Lindsey (Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio). A US submarine sinks near Cuba & the Navy enlists the help of the workers on the drilling rig in a rescue attempt. Four Navy SEALs are sent down to supervise this mission. Headed by Lt. Coffey, played by Michael Biehn. Too bad that Coffey suffers the effects of HPNS and begins to go a little over the edge. All this and oh yeah, there seem to be some unidentified underwater flying objects. Of course only Lindsey seems to see the & Coffey thinks they're Russian.This movie is full of conflicts, romance, action and adventure & is one of my favorite movies. This DVD is just full of extras that I haven't even fully explored yet. Just a few are a 59 minute documentary on the making of The Abyss as well as a 10 minute featurette. There are stills, cast historys, storyboards and anything else you could ever possibly want to know about this movie. This is a must buy DVD. 20th Century Fox takes it's time and puts out first rate DVD's. The Abyss, Fight Club & Aliens are just a few examples of this. If you do enjoy The Abyss Special Edition - try these others."