The Poseidon Adventure - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Poseidon Adventure Reviews

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Super Reviewer
August 3, 2015
Irwin Allen's engrossing classic that was the vanguard for the disaster genre. On New Year Eve the Luxury Ocean liner S.S. Poseidon is hit by a 90 foot tide wave that was caused by an undersea earthquake and capsized. Leaving a small band of survivors led by a rebellious preacher, superbly played by Gene Hackman, to journey through the perilous upside down bowels of the ship to hopefully make it to the stern of the ship and try to fine a way out through the propeller shaft, before the entire ship floods and sinks. Hackman fine turn is matched by solid supporting performances by Jack Albertson, Ernest Borgnine, Red Buttons, Roddy McDowall, Stella Stevens, and Shelly Winters in an endearing Oscar nominated performance. Brilliantly produced by Irwin Allen with astute direction by Ronald Neame, and an evocative Oscar nominated score by John Williams. Oscar winner for Best Song "The Morning After," also earned an special Oscar for special achievement in visual effects. Sit back and enjoy the disaster genre epic that started it all. Highly Recommended.
½ July 20, 2015
The only way to really enjoy this type of movie is to watch it in a BIG theatre, with a BIG crowd as it was seen in 70mm six track stereo sound. In 1he 1970's.
½ July 4, 2015
The best of Irwin Allen's series of disaster films, due to a fiery lead performance from Gene Hackman and steady direction from veteran director Ronald Neame. Almost everybody involved here is far better than the material, but they manage to elevate it.
½ June 22, 2015
A lot of fun to watch, even if it's not the most original type of movie. It really is just a typical disaster movie, but with a big cast, excellent stunts and sets, it is the kind of movie they just don't make anymore. Everything would be all CGI now. Seeing large floods of water and people falling off really high places is something you rarely see done with practical effects like this movie. If it were made today (and it was remade not too long ago) then it wouldn't be as much fun. It's one of the first big budget disaster flicks and worth checking out.
June 10, 2015
This is a great movie. The greatest escaping adventure of all time.
May 25, 2015
Shelly Winters swims! I always found this film to be one of the more ridiculous of the 1970s cycle of disaster films. It's not a bad film, but the disaster the film centers around always seemed pretty silly. A Queen Mary-like ship overtones during a storm and Reverend Gene Hackman leads a group of survivors through the upside down ship, hoping to find the ocean surface to be rescued. Like most of this cycle of films, it's a star studded affair of old and new Hollywood stars, which includes Ernest Borgnine, Shelley Winters, Red Buttons, Roddy McDowall, Stella Stevens, Jack Albertson, Pamela Sue Martin, Arthur O'Connell and Leslie Nielsen (who'd go on to parody this type of film in "Airplane"). A pre-Jaws or Star Wars John Williams provided the score, though he's thankfully not responsible for the annoying "The Morning After" song that served as the love theme for the film.
½ April 10, 2015
I think Grandpa Joe had a better time at the chocolate factory.
April 9, 2015
A genuinely entertaining good old fashioned disaster move from the early 1970's...pre CGI when explosions in films where real.

The story of the few survivors of the Poseidon Cruiser as it impacts with a Tidal Wave and is submerged upside down.

All the characters that are left in this disaster are all interesting and it's interesting seeing all the obstacles they have to overcome to ultimately escape. It's fun & exciting film that surpasses the sequel in leaps & bounds.
March 31, 2015
I loved watching the survivors making their way though the upside ship. The layout was very cool and it was all very disorienting. I'm not sure what type of art you would call that kind of setting. Steampunk without the steam? Industrial-punk? Anyway, if I had to pick a disaster situation to be thrown into this would be it. I'd also like to have the level-headed Gene Hackman, the noble priest, and Ernest Borgnine for comic relief. The interactions between him and his wife are hilarious. It's like the guy is always in panic mode. A great cast and some good special effects for the time makes this one of the better 70's disaster flicks.
March 5, 2015
A good 70s disaster flick with a great cast. I like the fact that we stay with the survivors the entire time which makes their story more personal. It may not be as exciting or fun as the title suggest, but it is still entertaining.

Grade: B
March 3, 2015
Classic ! One of my all time favs !
½ January 29, 2015
A classic disaster flick by how it was done and how well it was performed with desperation to live from the star-studded cast, who drew actual sympathy from the viewers. Also, this classic followed the usual formula of the genre with the same factors and elements like it's a survival game with predictability while attempting to pull off some kinks. (B)

(Full review coming soon)
½ January 25, 2015
A Classic Disaster Film!
January 21, 2015
The Poseidon Adventure tells the story of a group of passengers on a cruise ship that band together in hopes of escaping once the entire boat has capsized. It is one of those films where a new dilemma lurks around every corner so the group of survivors are constantly being tested by something different. It also, naturally, allows each one of them to have their moment in the spotlight. A lot of this feels somewhat formulaic looking back on it in 2015 but I think it worked surprisingly well in this movie that kind of set the standard that other disaster movies copy nowadays. I was also surprised how ready and willing they were to kill off characters. It did a great job of keeping the stakes raised so I wondered how many would actually survive. In fact, I kind of wish they hadn't put up the title card at the beginning detailing that there were a small number of survivors because I might have worried that no one would survive (or only one person) if they didn't tell me from the start.

The biggest difficulty I had with The Poseidon Adventure is the cast. It's not that I think any of them are bad actors, actually I like a lot of their work. But what I struggled with is that most of the actors in this film are people I grew up knowing from comedies and parodies. So it took me a long time to get into the serious tone of this film because every line felt like a joke when it came from the lips of Ernest Borgnine, Red Buttons, Jack Albertson, and especially Leslie Nielsen. It also didn't help that some of the dialogue didn't feel natural, so I was taken out of the movie. Luckily Gene Hackman was there to lend some gravitas to the proceedings. While I certainly didn't love The Poseidon Adventure, and kind of wish it was cast differently, it did have me on the edge of my seat a few times. I'm also impressed when a film like this can surprise me, and it did more than once. It's not the greatest disaster film of all time, but it's one I can recommend because it has just enough adventure and action to distract you from the fact that Frank Drebin is the captain of the ship.
January 3, 2015
Fun to watch over and over
½ December 31, 2014
A classic disaster flick from the 70s that has an all star cast and a really good adventure story. The cast all do a great job, the set pieces look great, the action is decent, I like the script and the characters are good just a shame it panders to the same old disaster movie cliches.
½ December 16, 2014
First and best of the Seventies disaster films. Essential.
December 15, 2014
i remeber seeing this as a kid well 8th grade and just loving it i loved all the irwin allen disaster pix
½ August 16, 2014
"The Poseidon Adventure" is one of the best disaster films of all time, featuring a thrilling plot and a glittering performance from Gene Hackman.
½ July 15, 2014
This one is certainly a must watch, but in terms of its quality, it is lacking. The acting is very poor (aside from Gene Hackman and Leslie Nielsen) and really hard to watch at times. In addition, the story is a little lackluster for the most part. Luckily, the actual disaster elements are good and it provides its fair share of thrills, which make up a bit for the terrible everything else. As a whole, this one is nothing more than alright and should be watched for the great disaster stuff, but it was clear to me watching this that it had not aged too well and that The Towering Inferno was far superior, thanks to progress they made here.
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