With the array of bad movies that take place in the dark, mysterious waters of the ocean, "Underwater" attempted to change the trope, yet ultimately drowned in the process.
Don't get me wrong, I love deep ocean movies as much as the next person, but Kristen Stewart was one of the few redeeming qualities of this mediocre attempt at the genre. Unlike many "bad" underwater movies, it tried too hard to create a new genre of sci-fi movies.
Starting off with no background story to the characters, the movie jumps directly into the action. This would have been a cool concept to play with if it had been done properly, but it made it difficult for the audience to truly care about the characters without knowing much about them.
The movie did eventually clear this up making the two sole survivors fall in love, giving the captain a daughter who had passed away at age 14, and Stewart’s character a fiancé who was lost in the deep sea. These attempts seemed half-hearted and fell through, landing ineffectively.
Though it fell short on most of the production with some scares being ineffective, and the monsters in the movie looking like average attempts at CGI, it did a wonderful job giving a feeling of claustrophobia in some scenes.
With barely any lighting and a tense set up, “Underwater” really gave the feeling that not only were their lives at stake, but so was yours. It left you on the edge of your seat wondering if one more drop of water might drown the character on screen.
This was also the downfall of many scenes in the move. The "final boss" monster at the end, much resembling Cthulhu, the film felt like the content was stolen from many other movies in the sci-fi genre. Many on twitter were comparing it to “an ‘Alien’ rip-off minus Sigourney Weaver.”
Kristen Stewart came to the rescue and carried the weight of the movie. With some of her best acting, Stewart made you genuinely care for her character, making Nora’s sacrifice at the end of the movie emotional and impactful.
Overall, the movie is good, but fell short in a lot of places. It had a lot of potential but tried too hard to be something it couldn’t. At best, it’s an at home rent-it perfect for shark week.