The Abyss - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Abyss Reviews

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Top Critic
Duane Byrge
Hollywood Reporter
March 10, 2015
Colossally ambitious, this logistically boggling and technically brilliant film from writer-director James Cameron is a visual tour de force, featuring overall, the greatest underwater sequences ever seen on film.
Nick Davis
Nick's Flick Picks
August 4, 2010
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.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Tim Brayton
Antagony & Ecstasy
December 14, 2009
One need not be a Cameron acolyte to recognise that The Abyss has aged better than some of the films that outshone it back in the day.
Full Review | Original Score: 7/10
Brian Orndorf
August 26, 2009
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.
Full Review | Original Score: A
Top Critic
Variety Staff
June 19, 2008
A firstrate underwater suspenser with an otherworldly twist, The Abyss suffers from a payoff unworthy of its buildup.
Emanuel Levy
September 19, 2007
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.
Full Review | Original Score: C+

TV Guide
June 6, 2007
What ultimately saves the film are its extraordinary sets and phenomenal Oscar-winning visual effects.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
June 6, 2007
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.
| Original Score: 2/4
Cole Smithey
May 11, 2007
Great blending of spectacle and drama.
| Original Score: 4/5
Lori Hoffman
Atlantic City Weekly
March 29, 2006
Forget Titanic this is Cameron's best underwater flick
| Original Score: 5/5
Top Critic
Geoff Andrew
Time Out
February 9, 2006
This overlong concoction is scuppered by dire dialogue, histrionic performances and maudlin sentimentality.
Michael Dequina
September 10, 2005
What was once a well-made, well-acted mess is now a very poignant and satisfying sci-fi adventure.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Scott Weinberg
April 17, 2005
A gorgeous and fascinating underwater adventure.
| Original Score: 5/5
Clint Morris
March 24, 2005
A remarkable film...the vfx are super!
| Original Score: 3/5
Staci Layne Wilson
December 31, 2004
Click to read review
Widgett Walls
July 20, 2004
For God's sake, make sure you have the director's cut. The theatrical cut was an abomination.
| Original Score: 4/5
James O'Ehley
Sci-Fi Movie Page
December 5, 2003
Brilliant at sustaining tension and interest.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Alex Sandell
Juicy Cerebellum
April 1, 2003
Suffers due to its incredible length and slow pace, but intriguing, nonetheless.
| Original Score: 3/5
Marjorie Baumgarten
Austin Chronicle
March 10, 2003
Pretty great underwater adventure.
Christopher Null
October 5, 2002
A classic.
| Original Score: 4/5
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