Movies Set On/In Water

Avatar: The Way Of Water (2022) in UK and Irish Cinemas now

Giant Smurfs in water aka Avatar : The Way Of Water is still the big release in UK and Irish cinemas. Recently on Scary Monsters And Super Geeks internet radio show (on Voodoo Radio) I shared this list, dedicated to films set in water. Be on the surface or in it or even both. As ever the list below is only a selection…

Life Of Pi (2012)

Ang Lee’s award winning drama which was also based on a best selling novel of the same name. Part survival, part fantasy of a story of a young man (Suraj Sharma) on his way to a new life in the USA. When the ship capsizes he finds himself with a Zebra,  an orangutan, a hyena,  and a Bengali tiger. All together in a boat thanks to fantastic CGI, a very good story about faith which Lee would win Best Director Oscar for.

All Is Lost (2013)

Very few talk about this powerhouse performance from Hollywood legend Robert Redford. He was the only cast member in JC Chandor’s film which was also near dialogue free. It relied on Redford’s performance and boy what a performance.

Battleship Potemkin (1925)

The influential Russian silent epic from Sergei M. Eisenstein. All about the mutiny onboard the titular ship and based on the true events as the ship sails in and around the Black Sea. The film was ahead of it’s time in regards to production and editing films, using techniques part and parcel of 21st century filmmaking.

Captain Phillips (2013)

Another film based around true events and starred Tom Hanks. All about the story of an American cargo ship that found its crew taken hostage by Somalian pirates. Hanks played our titular captain in this film that was nominated for several awards. There was also questions about Captain Phillips himself whom some considered to be a little ‘foolish’ rather than someone ho would sacrifice himself in name of saving his crew.

20,000 Leagues Under The Sea (1954)

Based on Jules Verne’s classic adventure novel, has been made several times for cinema and television. The version want is the version starring Kirk Douglas and James Mason is Captain Nemo and the Nautilus. Richard Fleischer’s Walt Disney produced film is considered a classic. Filmed in glorious technicolour will always be remembered for it’s fight scene with a giant Squid, Highly entertaining film that would win best special effects at the Oscars. Also considered one of the early entries into the steampunk subgenre.

The Poseidon Adventure (1972)

Blockbusters nowadays are hyperbolic CGI filled generic trash. In the 1970 those films had an extra edge that kept you on the edge of your seat, especially the disaster blockbusters. This one was a big hit and had a fantastic cast Roddy McDowall, Shelley Winters, Ernest Borgnine, Gene Hackman, and Leslie Neilsen. We find ourselves in a luxury liner full of self centred wealthy people who show their true-self when that ship overturned. To survive you have to work together to escape, not this bunch. The special effects maybe dated, they where practical and more excited than what’s on offer nowadays.

Titanic (1997)

If you’re going to have a list inspired by a James Cameron film, you need to have this one on the list! Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet star in Cameron’s historical epic and RMS Titanic. Tragically sunk when it hit an iceberg on the way to New York from Southampton. This love story of star crossed lovers divided by classic and tragedy. Water was a continual threat throughout the film with special effects one of the stars of the film.

The Abyss (1989)

Another James Cameron film which saw Aliens and deep sea diving come together. I think we can say Cameron has a passion for the sea and the mysteries that call Earth’s Oceans their home. Once again our director is at the top of the pile when it comes to the cutting edge special effects available at the time. For a film that’s 33 plus years old they where ahead of it’s time, a little dated now. A story of of a nuclear submarine that malfunctions near a sea trench only for entity to make contact with them.

Waterworld (1997)

If you are looking for a ridiculously stupid, Kevin Costner’s Leto Fest is that film. The logistics of the ice caps melting gives things a hint of reality how there would still be landmass. Everything was so wrong with this film, not even Dennis Hopper could save this mess. The overall plot was non existent, that would put this film up with Battlefield Earth in terrible films, though Arrow Video had hope in the film with a recent re-release.

Jaws (1975)

If you are going to talk about films in and around water you got to have this iconic Steven Spielberg film. The three notes from the soundtrack are legendry and easily recognisable. It was also considered one of the first modern blockbusters with many scenes of the man eating shark still terrifying cinephiles world wide. Gonna need a bigger boat!

Notables – Pirates Of The Caribbean, Finding Nemo, Finding Dory, The Hunt For Red October, Deep Blue Sea, The Meg, Underwater, Luca, The Shallows, Moby Dick, Das Boot, Crawl, Lifeboat (Alfred Hitchcock)

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