Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Review: Open Water

Open Water (2003) ****
Director/Writer: Chris Kentis (Grind, and another feature in post-prod scheduled for a 2011 release)
Starring: Blanchard Ryan, Daniel Travis

Surprisingly entertaining indie thriller. Although we're not given much reason to care about the characters before they are accidentally abandoned in the ocean, this film offers a palpable sense of despair, hopelessness and fear the couple endure afterwards. The cinematography genuinely captures the feeling of what it would be like to be left behind in "open water." And the fact that the actors are actually in the ocean with real sharks swimming around them elevates the suspense to nail-biting status. For DVD viewers, after the film I recommend watching the production featurette -- the actors aren't just "acting" but reacting to real sharks swimming around them in the ocean. That kind of realism gives the movie a tangible sense of terror that other shark movies simply don't have.

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