The Abyss Reviews
The attempt to extract the essences of several genres (cold-war submarine thriller, love story, Disney fantasy, pseudomystical SF in the Spielberg mode) and mix them together ultimately leads to giddy incoherence.
Anyone looking for a discouraging word about this stupendously exciting and emotionally engulfing film should read no further. The Abyss confirms James Cameron as a world-class filmmaker.
The Abyss gains in some ways from its own Achilles heels, in a way most movies don't... its formal technique, its reckless obsessiveness, and its gutsy emotionalism are what I can't stop turning over in my mind.
The movie was a bear to make and it shows onscreen, parading around a series of mesmerizing set-pieces that look deliciously hard-earned in ways our current CG-drenched filmmaking climate never allows.
As a follow-up to Cameron's great sci-fi Aliens, The Abyss is too verbose for an actioner and the special effects, striking as they are, are not well integrated into the narrative, but it's still worth seeing.