Thursday, January 15, 2015

Sci-Fi Classics: Live-Blogging "The Abyss"

This is an undersea movie. LET'S GET WET, 1989-style!

Can you dig it? They can! (For oil, underwater.)
A submarine. Dudes are talking about "Reds." It's the '80s! Cold War party!!!!! Some sort of proximity warning. Numbers. "Nothing goes 130 knots." Something's going to collide with them. It's a light or something? Did they just go through an underground warp zone? Collision blahblahblah. Fire, yelling, water leaks. I would never voluntarily get on a submarine. Almost as bad as a spaceship. Drowning/suffocation is inevitable. The ship is sinking. The captain says, "Launch the boy" I think he means "buoy." The ship is penetrated and water gets all over them and they scream and sink and die.

You didn't know this movie had royalty, did you?
Helicopters land on an aircraft carrier. A LADY arrives. "Queen bitch of the universe," some douche calls her. The lady says they're turning the wreck over to the "goon squad." I don't really know what's happening. Underwater dudes are looking around at something. Ed Harris is their boss. He gets a video call. It's the Navy calling. Their underground drilling company is apparently being utilized to investigate the sinking. They're going to pay them pretty well because they can get there before the Navy's salvage ships can and there's a storm coming or something. Ed Harris is Not Pleased they have to do this. The lady is pissed their submersible drilling rig she designed is being used for something else. She and Ed Harris are exes or something. She is on another submersible or something. I don't know, I don't really care. She doesn't want to be called "ma'am" by her team. She's worried they won't all make it to the right depth. Oh my god, I just don't care. The dudes are Navy Seals, I think. Their commander has a mustache. He's getting the hand-shaking symptoms of water pressure-itis or whatever as they arrive on the oil rig ship thing.

Guys, I hope the dramatic stakes in this movie helps these two near-exes forget all the very good reasons they are breaking up  and postpone their divorce for a few years!
She does not like to be called "Mrs. whatever." No one likes Lindsey. She's worked on this project for four years, and she and her ex were together three. Ed Harris drops his wedding ring in a toilet, but then changes his mind. His hand's all blue from fishing it out of the chemical-y toilet water. The crew is worried about radiation from the crashed sub. Mustache Navy dude is stern. Ed Harris is resentful. One of the Seals shows the nerdy crew guy how the weird fluid they breathe at very deep depths works on his rat, forcibly. They're all going down two and half miles into The Abyss. Lindsey's down to her tank top to pilot a ship. The little exploratory ships have reached the wreck. Not much sign of radiation. There are dudes in diving suits, but not sure where they are, since it's just ships investigating the ship right now. Oh, okay now they're going.  They're launching an ROV. Isaac is questioning some of the water pressure science happening here. The second woman in this movie is a butch black lady.

SRSLY though, how awesome would it be if they busted into some sweet underwater choreography up on that platform?
The sub had a ton of warheads on it. The divers are going to enter the sub through the pressure hold breach. They are now inside exploring. They have to break into some compartment where they find the bodies. Be cool, bro. Do they really think they're going to find survivors? In the missile compartment, Jammer sees sea spiders crawl out of a dude's mouth. He kind of freaks out. Ed Harris is going to stay on the other end of this orange rope from him, no problem. They have to make sure that they clear any compartments that might have air. Jammer's flashlight goes out and he loses voice contact with Bud (Ed). He tugs on the rope until it gets cut off on something. He's freaking the fuck out. Weird lights are maybe happening? Shitty keyboard choral music. Jammer tries to get away. Jammer is seizing. They think too much oxygen. Bud tries to fix the mixture.


Lindsey's ship shuts down and she sees a ball of light flit out from the crash site. It's like a pink sea bug thing? Her power comes back on and she has to go save the divers. Seal: "Look, I'm just a medic." Jammer's going to be in a coma, I guess. Lindsey's developing some film. Bud asks her what she saw. She doesn't want to say. She doesn't know what it is. The Seals think it could've been a Russian bogey. They're ordered to move to "Phase 2" which involves arming a warhead. The TV news claims it was a Russian ship that sank the sub. On the surface it's stormy. Cuban and Russian ships are monitoring shit. "Hippy," the rat guy, is nervous. The Seals have stolen a craft, I think. The hurricane on the surface is all hurricaney. It's dangerous for the dudes to be swimming right now or something. They follow arming directions from a "SECRET" set of directions. Mustache's hand shakes again. He wants no one to touch his bag full of nuclear warhead. The black lady is being sent down to do something else now.

If you were going to costume a butch oil rig worker, this is exactly what you'd pick out, isn't it?
She's trying to disconnect some umbilical cable, but the water currents are like intense or whatever. The rig is being pulled to the abyss. Topside, the winch gets destroyed, so that's not good. They're not connected to the top anymore. Sirens and lights in the rig. Whatshername's ship almost gets hit by crane parts. Hippy puts his rat in a ziploc bag to protect him. The crane crashes down right next to the rig. Uh-oh, now it's falling over the edge and it's going to pull them down, too. Ruh-roh! Sparks, fires, water leaks. Lindsey finds an oxygen mask. A Seal yells to Hippy to seal a room that has flames. Is his warhead going to go off? Hippy's rat in a bag starts to float away and he grabs it right before a little ship crashes into a doorway. Another dude gets smooshed under it in some water, I think? I don't know. Whatever. Water crashes into some room. Someone? seals the door and they're trapped, drowning.  Bud can't open it. The hose has to be cut inside. Water starts to crash down on him too and he runs. His fingers get smashed in an automatic door as water fills in behind him. A couple of the other dudes cut the hose motors and try to pry him out. He gets out and water pours in after him. They get to another chamber and are able to shut the hatch. His wedding ring kept his finger from getting actually smashed. SYMBOLISM?


The team can't reach anybody on the radio. Mustache tells Bud he was under orders and had no choice about something. Lindsey is trying to fix some shit. They're not going to have heat or enough oxygen to outlast the storm. Bud's glad she's here. She's not. She has to go outside to do something reparative. The video feed from the ROV with her keeps cutting out. The power goes out. The weird pink glowy thing comes up behind her. It's like a glowing ship/fish with lights and other stuff inside. It goes away and the mother ship comes up out of the Abyss. It's mostly pink and glowing and clear and has flashy lights. It's checking her out and making whirring/purring noises. She pets it? It starts to move away and then suddenly jets when she tries to take a picture. The little one is playful. Once they're gone, the power comes back.


Lindsey tries to explain what she saw. She says it's not human and it's intelligent. Hippy is pumped about UFOs. Underwater. UUFO. UUSwimmingO? Bud pulls her aside and accuses her of inciting hysteria. SEXIST. She tries to describe how it glided and was beautiful. It was a living machine. She needs Bud to believe her. "We all see what we want to see," she says. The Seals see Russians. Bud is not feeling it.


The Seals are doing surgery on the missile they recovered. An ROV looks in their window. Hippy's spying on them. He records the video feed on VHS. Hippy seems like he pretty much knows what's up. Lindsey overhears and is pissed. She tries to break into the Seals' room. She uncovers their missile and is PISSED that it's on her rig. Mustache sweats and tells her to make an about-face. A Seal grabs Lindsey and Bud puts on an alarm to alert the others. Mustache is named Coffey, but I'm going to keep calling him Mustache. Mustache is also played by Michael Biehn, Designated Sexy Dude in '80s Sci Fi Films, but with sinister facial hair here. Mustache's shaky hand was gripping a handgun. He says they can't trust the crew."We're going to have to take steps." Doesn't sound good. Hippy tells everyone Mustache's hand is shaking.


Lindsey wants to send down another ROV to get evidence that it's not Russians down there before the Seals mistakenly nuke the ocean. Mustache watches her argue about it with Hippy on a security monitor and hears everything they're saying. The crew tries to get some sleep. Hippy gets the ROV ready to go explore and then goes to bed. A pink light comes into the diving pool. A shape forms out of the water and moves down a hallway on the rig. It opens a hatch and sees people sleeping. It finds Lindsey and she tries to wake up Bud as a weird water worm looks at them. Butch Black Lady wakes up. They also wake up the bearded dude. He's about to throw a plant at it. It's looking at Lindsey. The end of the pillar of water mimics her face. 1989 CGI! It's not bad. Then it makes Bud's face. She touches it and tastes it, Mulder-style. It's seawater. Then the pillar retreats and they run after it. There is playful music playing. Isaac calls it whimsical. The water worm has found the warhead. Mustache and his surviving bro see the originating end of it at the pool and shut a door, cutting it in half. It retreats back into the ocean. Nice one, Mustache. RUDE.


"So raise your hand if you think that was a Russian water tentacle." Nice one, Queen Bitch! Mustache is so sweaty and paranoid looking. Eyes very shifty. Hippy thinks Lindsey saw their ships earlier. Mustache is slicing stripes into his arm with a big ol' knife. He tells his guy, "It went straight for the warhead, and they think it's cute." Inaccurate. There is a stuffed Garfield with suction limbs on their porthole. Mustache is arming himself. He's freaking out because they have no contact to the surface and it's all up to them now. This is going to end so well, you guys. Hippy makes his way down to the pool and sees that the Seals have armed his ROV with the newly-armed warhead. Mustache catches him lurking. The Seals pull guns on the whole crew. There's a Coke fountain machine. Mustache grabs his injured bro to help. Lindsey tries to talk to him and he throws her.  He puts duct tape on her face and throws everybody in the kitchen. There's three hours on the warhead's timer. Injured Seal says they don't have enough time to get a minimum safe distance away by then and Mustache disarms him. THINGS ARE SO FUCKING GOOD.


The injured dude tries to convince his Navy bro not to comply with Mustache's fake crazy orders. Jammer is awake and lets everybody out of the kitchen. He thinks he saw an angel down there. Mustache has tied up the door wheel thing. They have to find another way to sub-bay. Bud is going to swim to Hatch 6. Lindsey is worried he'll freeze. Beard's going to go with him. They strip down and go under. They're, like, legit outside right now. They find the hatch they want and open it. There's some air at the top of the pressure hatch. Beard is going to stay here while Bud goes on to some other place. Oh, he swims up into their pool. He sees Mustache playing with some chains and tries to quietly pull himself out. He's so cold. The crew is duct taping one of the Seals up. As the crew watches on a security monitor, Bud approaches Mustache with a large blunt object. Mustache pulls his gun and the trigger, but it either isn't loaded or malfunctions. They hit each other. Apparently the taped-up Seal took out his bullets. But now they're in a knife fight. Mustache gets the upper hand and starts choking Bud. Apparently Beardo made it through the water too and punches Mustache off Bud. Mustache jumps into one of the little ships and they try to pull the armed ROV off as he drives it away.

Let us not worry about which plot points have brought his shirt to this state, just appreciate the gifts you've been given..
Beardo shoots at the ship in the pool. Bud puts on an underwater suit and gives chase. Lindsey gets in a ship to follow also. Mustache is NOT looking good. He's stuck or something and Bud is able to start trying to take the thing off. He ties a rope to the ROV just before Mustache releases it. He ties it to the rig. Mustache better have some giant scissors on there. His pincers are not very good when he crashes into the building. He elbows to death a tape player that just started playing. Mustache starts chasing Bud himself. His torn shirt keeps getting more and more messed up.  It's half a shirt now. Lindsey crashes her lil ship into Mustache's. Mustache's has a fire. She picks up Bud but not before he says "I'm comin', Baby. Keep your pantyhose on." You should continue to divorce him. The rope comes undone, but they're able to grab it with the sub's arm until Mustache rams them and they lose "Geek," the little ROV. A chase ensues.


Ramming, Bud giving "Baby" directions. She causes a minor avalanche to get in Mustache's way and then rams him while he can't see and crashes him into some rocks. The two little subs are now stuck together and Mustache's is going over the edge. It doesn't pull theirs, though. He falls and then his craft implodes. The craft Bud and Lindsey are in is all broken. They won't be able to catch Big Geek in this. They're being flooded in the meantime. He's got a wetsuit on, but she's really cold. They should share a suit. She won't survive before he swims to the rig and back. He wants her to put the air helmet on and swim, but she wants him to wear the whole suit and pull her body back. She says she can be revived with hypothermia. He is reluctant, but it makes the most sense. He kisses her. She's cold and crying and about to drown. She's pretty dead and he's pulling her body back to the rig. The crew preps all the first aid stuff. They pull her out and start shocking her and stuff. They put hot packs all over her and pump air into her. Also, we see her really cold boobs. Bud keeps trying compressions, but she's gone. They didn't actually try the adrenaline shot he asked for. She's pretty blue. Maybe the sea alien will cure her. Bud freaks out and keeps trying CPR. They shock her again. He yells and slaps her to fight. He shakes her and she starts to breathe. She coughs and they all laugh. HAHA NEAR DEATH, AMIRITE?


She wakes up again later and they stroke each other's faces. How much longer until the warhead goes off? Okay, now they're prepping Bud to go disarm it, there's about an hour left. He has to wear contacts to see through the weird breathing fluid. They're putting weights on him to drop him to the bottom. He can't talk with the fluid, but he'll have a keyboard and can hear them talk. It's kind of freaky when he has to adjust to the liquid inside the helmt. Supposedly your body will remember breathing liquid in the womb.


He's calmer now and says it feels weird. He's basically wearing a full-on space suit. One of the dudes is wearing a Packers letterman jacket. OBVIOUSLY. Bud's holding onto a little tiny ROV and it's going to lead him straight to Big Geek with the warhead. Bud goes off the edge and lets Little Geek and the weights take him down in to the Abyss. Bud's currently setting a record for the deepest suit dive. He's one mile down and occasionally bumping off the side. He's having hand shaking stuff. The team wants Lindsey to talk to him, emotionally. Gross.

Ugh, worst almost-ex-wife ever, amirite?
She talks to him at 12,000 feet. He can't type right. She tells him to listen to her voice. Little Geek breaks and Bud keeps falling. He bounces off the cliff wall and tumbles down. He's got a flare to light the way. Lindsey tries to talk him through. "I'm with you. I'll always be with you." OH WHO'S NOT GETTING A DIVORCE NOW? Beardo chimes in. Bud finally types back that he feels a little better. He sees lights. The Seal guy thinks he's hallucinating, but it's the aliens. The Navy guy will tell him how to disable the bomb. Bud's flare goes out and now he's using a glow stick. Underwater rave! This green light isn't helping him see the right light colors on the wires. He almost cuts one and then tries the other, maybe? No explosion. He only has five minutes left on his air mixture, but it took him thirty to get down there. Lindsey wants him to head back now, but he says he knew this was a one way ticket. "love you wife" he texts. She loves him blahblahblah. I guess he's just going to chill by the lights now and wait to die.


Bud sees some pink lights come at him. A thing that looks like a glowing manta ray comes towards him. An alien dude looks at him from inside (I think) and extends a hand. It has only three fingers and flaps him away to their underground city or whatever. Inspirational music. Not great CGI here, but good for 1989. They fly down into a tunnel. Bud is getting sleepy. He lands somewhere and it seems like they're making him an oxygen room by moving the water away. He takes off his helmet to breathe. He throws up the water mixture stuff and coughs a bit. He takes off the air tanks and sees some of the glowy ray dudes floating next to the water wall. "Howdy." They show him his last messages again. Choral-type musicks. He salutes them. An alien face fades into clouds in front of the sun. Triumphant music.


The ship on the surface is trying to contact the rig now. They debate how to get them back. Suddenly, they get a message from Bud. He's okay and has new friends. Suddenly the rig starts to shake. Pink light approaches. The big ship is rising up out of the deep. It rises out of the water and is a big purple/pink thing rising up underneath their ship. It's the whole spaceship. All the dudes are like, WTF? The rig is on top of it, too. The survivors climb out. "We should be dead," Lindsey says. "We didn't decompress." Bud climbs out of tunnel with his arms raised triumphantly. They walk to each other and start to make out.


Blahblahblah the end. So long. Literally, I'm not saying goodbye, that movie was just so. long. Ugh, James Cameron, get an editor.

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