Deep Impact

Critics Consensus

A tidal wave of melodrama sinks Deep Impact's chance at being the memorable disaster flick it aspires to be.



Total Count: 85


Audience Score

User Ratings: 340,687
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Movie Info

Mimi Leder (The Peacemaker) directed this science-fiction disaster drama about the possible extinction of human life after a comet is discovered headed toward Earth with the collision only one year away. Ambitious MSNBC reporter Jenny Lerner (Tea Leoni) stumbles onto the story, prompting a White House press conference. United States President Beck (Morgan Freeman) announces the government's solution: a team of astronauts will travel to the comet and destroy it. The team leader aboard the spaceship Messiah is Spurgeon Tanner (Robert Duvall), who was once the last man to walk on the moon. However, the mission fails, splitting off a chunk of the comet, now due to land in the Atlantic with the impact sending a 350-foot tidal wave flooding 650 miles inland, destroying New York and other cities. The larger part of the comet, hitting in Canada, will trigger an E.L.E. (Extinction Level Event), not unlike a "nuclear winter" as dust clouds block out the sun and bring life to an end. President Beck reveals Plan B: a cavernous underground retreat constructed to hold one million Americans, with most to be selected through a national lottery. Since teenage amateur astronomer Leo Biederman (Elijah Wood) discovered the comet, his family gets a pass to enter the cave, but his girlfriend Sarah (Leelee Sobieski) and her parents will be left behind. Meanwhile, still in space, Spurgeon Tanner devises a plan for a kamikaze-styled operation that could possibly save the Earth. Special visual effects by Scott Farrar and Industrial Light & Magic. ~ Bhob Stewart, Rovi


Robert Duvall
as Spurgeon Tanner
Téa Leoni
as Jenny Lerner
Elijah Wood
as Leo Biederman
Vanessa Redgrave
as Robin Lerner
Maximilian Schell
as Jason Lerner
Leelee Sobieski
as Sarah Hotchner
Morgan Freeman
as President Beck
James Cromwell
as Alan Rittenhouse
Mary McCormack
as Andrea Baker
Blair Underwood
as Mark Simon
Dougray Scott
as Eric Vennekor
Ron Eldard
as Oren Monash
Alexander Balueyev
as Mikhail Tulchinsky
Jon Favreau
as Gus Partenza
Laura Innes
as Beth Stanley
Bruce Weitz
as Stuart Caley
Betsy Brantley
as Ellen Biederman
Richard Schiff
as Don Biederman
Gary Werntz
as Chuck Hotchner
O'Neal Compton
as Morton Entrekin
Caitlin Fein
as Caitlin Stanley
Amanda Fein
as Caitlin Stanley
Joseph Urla
as Ira Moskatel
Una Damon
as Marianne Duclos
Mark Moses
as Tim Urbanska
Derek de Lint
as Theo Van Sertema
Charles Dumas
as Jeff Worth
Suzy Nakamura
as Jenny's Assistant
Alimi Ballard
as Bobby Rhue
Katie Hagan
as Jane Biederman
Denise Crosby
as Vicky Hotchner
Rahi Azizi
as Student
Hannah Werntz
as Holly Rittenhouse
Tucker Smallwood
as Ivan Bronsky
Merrin Dungey
as Sheila Bradley
Kimberly Huie
as Wendy Mogel
William Fair
as Grey Man
Francis X. McCarthy
as General Scott
Ellen Bry
as Stofsky
Concetta Tomei
as Patricia Ruiz
Mike O'Malley
as Mike Perry
Kurtwood Smith
as Otis Hefter
Gerry Griffin
as NASA Official
Charlie Hartsock
as David Baker
Jennifer Jostyn
as Mariette Monash
Don Handfield
as Dwight Tanner
Jason Frasca
as Steve Tanner
Cynthia Ettinger
as Pretty Woman
Benjamin Stralka
as Little Boy
Stephanie Patton
as Brittany Baker
John Ducey
as Young Lieutenant
Christopher Darga
as Section Leader
Cornelius Lewis
as Bus Sergeant
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News & Interviews for Deep Impact

Critic Reviews for Deep Impact

All Critics (85) | Top Critics (21) | Fresh (38) | Rotten (47)

  • It drags considerably, and mainstream action audiences are likely to find it tedious and undeniably old-fashioned.

    May 8, 2019 | Full Review…
  • The filmmakers want us to care about all these people, but we never really get to know them, and there is no sense of impending doom except when Leoni starts chugging martinis.

    Jun 25, 2018 | Full Review…
  • Deep Impact isn't especially deep, and the extent of its impact seems limited. But it does turn out to be a fairly involving movie.

    Jun 25, 2018 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • Why isn't it scarier? Maybe its targets are too scattered, its final impact too shallow. Maybe director Mimi Leder couldn't locate the right overall tone. And maybe the two writers simply don't take the story very seriously.

    Jun 25, 2018 | Full Review…
  • When all is said and done, it is precisely such lackluster imitations of real life that prevent this lightweight melodrama from leaving any deep, or lasting, impact of its own.

    Jun 25, 2018 | Full Review…
  • These folks are so blase, you'd think that scientists had predicted pennies from Heaven instead of world's end within the year.

    Jun 25, 2018 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Deep Impact

  • Apr 12, 2016
    I now realize that I have been mistaken this movie with "Armageddon" and that this was the boring one of the two. The movie have no - no pun intended - impact on the people who are watching and trying to enjoy the movie. This movie is incredibly boring and it really takes a good part of the movie before anything really happens. The movie has too much structure and tries to tackle too much at the same time. Mimi Jeder is not a good film director and this movie provs that, as the movie takes its sweet time to get of the ground. Elijah Wood is the main character - I think - and he is fine, but his entire arc in this movie is weird and feel incredibly forced. Morgan Freeman is good, but that's nothing new, and unfortunately for this movie, his performance doesn't safe this movie from becoming a horribly assembled mess.
    Lasse G Super Reviewer
  • Sep 26, 2015
    Moving and pretty realistic. One of the better disaster movies made, in my opinion.
    Kyle M Super Reviewer
  • Aug 11, 2013
    There's nothing particularly exciting about this movie to begin with, but honestly this film's focus is way too disjointed. There's too many characters and perspectives, none of whom are particularly interesting. The writers should've just picked their focus and stuck with it. In the end, this is just a shitty version of Armageddon.
    Stephen S Super Reviewer
  • Mar 10, 2013
    Sometimes known as the other comet film, Deep Impact tried to ride on the hype of Armageddon but didn't have either the energy or the talent to deliver the epic adventure that it promised. Facing an extinction level event from a rogue comment headed for Earth, the world prepares to fight for survival. While the story's fairly interesting, the melodrama is overdone. The casting's pretty impressive and includes Tea Leoni, Morgan Freeman, Elijah Wood, and Robert Duvall, but their performances are especially weak; Leoni in particular is awful. Additionally, the product placement is so blatant that at times it's hard to tell whether this is a film or an MSNBC commercial. Deep Impact is a poorly made film, but it still manages to deliver some entertaining thrills and some visually stunning action sequences.
    Dann M Super Reviewer

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