Sunday, July 17, 2011

#345. Leviathan (1989)


Directed By: George P. Cosmatos


Starring: Peter Weller, Richard Crenna, Amanda Pays, Daniel Stern



Tag line: "The True Meaning of Fear"

Trivia:  Very few scenes in this film were actually shot underwater







Leviathan borrows heavily from a pair of Sci-Fi / Horror classics: 1979's Alien (A motley crew of miners, miles from civilization, are hunted by a strange life form) and 1982's The Thing (Without going too heavily into spoilers, let's just say the “strange life form” I'm referring to has a lot in common with John Carpenter's snow-bound alien). To say Leviathan doesn't measure up to the films that “inspired” it isn't exactly fair; truth is, most fall short when compared with these two. The problem with Leviathan is that it only mimics Alien and The Thing up to a certain point, adopting similar ideas and situations, but failing to infuse them with the raw tension necessary to bring it all to life. 

Miles below the ocean's surface, a team of miners are days away from completing their 3-month assignment when they make a startling discovery. Hidden deep within a chasm, two of the miners: Six-Pack (Daniel Stern) and Williams (Amanda Pays) stumble upon the remains of a Russian ship named Leviathan, which, from the looks of the wreckage, was intentionally sunk. When the two return with a safe they found hidden on-board the Leviathan, they also bring with them a dangerous organism, one that threatens the safety of the entire group, and neither their boss, Beck (Peter Weller), nor the doctor (Richard Crenna) know how to stop it. 

It isn't long before Leviathan starts showing the cracks in its armor. In the opening moments of the film, the entire mining team is hard at work on the ocean floor when one of them, a young guy named DeJesus (Michael Carmine), suffers a malfunction in his protective suit. To make matters worse, the doctor, who's supposed to be manning mission control with Beck, is nowhere to be found. With time running out, Beck, who has little command experience and no medical training whatsoever, must act quickly if he's to have any hope at all of saving DeJesus. Sounds pretty exciting, doesn't it? Well, it isn't. In fact, this entire sequence is paced far too methodically to generate even the slightest bit of suspense. It's a problem that will plague Leviathan for the bulk of it's running time, and even when the creature is finally loose inside the base, knocking off miners one-by-one in the most gruesome ways imaginable, it's hard to give a damn about any of it. 

The few scenes that do work in Leviathan (the film's best moment involves the premature disposal of two dead “bodies”) aren't enough to make it a worthwhile experience. Instead of this film, I'd recommend going straight to the source by watching either Alien or The Thing; you'll essentially get the same story, but with these two, at least you know it'll be done right.








27 comments:

Anonymous said...

Heck I keep forgetting about the day change. Man. It has been out almost a week. Downloading and storing now on my device. I can't wait to hear the reviews and DVD picks.....Stewie

Dave Becker said...

@Stewie: It's perfectly understandable...it took me a while to adjust to the new day, and I'm on the show!

Please be sure to stop back and let us know what you thought of it, and thanks for listening!

Anonymous said...

I hope this is the right place to comment on the Horror Jungle podcast.

It is nifty, reccomendations galore, I love it.

Lionel - Vermont

Dave Becker said...

@Lionel: It certainly is! All comments on Horror Jungle are welcome here.

Thanks so much for the kind words. We're glad you enjoy the podcast, and we thank you very much for listening.

Anonymous said...

Number 2 show was fantastic- Ordered 3 movies, Yes indeed the Zombie ones- 1DanceoftheDead 2RammbockBerlinUndead 3DeadGirl- I had to skip the PontyPool as everyone said it does not show Zombies- I want a Zombie movie to show Human craving Zombies- That's why I love Zombies- My name is even Joe "Zombie" Nitzeraoli- Bye Zombie 4eva!

Dave Becker said...

@Joe "Zombie": Glad you liked the show!

This episode was pretty zombie-heavy, wasn't it? Well, that's surely not a bad thing! Thanks for checking out the films. What's great is you'll be getting at least one recommendation every episode now (Midnight Corey will undoubtedly prove an excellent source of great zombie movies).

Here's hoping we give you plenty more films to watch in the weeks ahead! Thanks for stopping by, and for listening to Horror Jungle.

Anonymous said...

Horror Jungle recieves another "10" on Episode show 2. Fun show for sure.

Dave Becker said...

Thanks for the "10" rating...it's greatly appreciated.

We're glad you enjoyed the episode, and thanks so much for stopping by, and for listening to Horror Jungle.

Anonymous said...

Pertaining to the latest post on Horror Jungle about the rankings of hosts. I was hoping that order wasn't a 1-8 list, happy about the explanation. Let me rank you, I know you guys never would not to step on host's toes.
Ranking from Pratt(me):
1) Midnight Corey
2) BillChete
3) Joe Mummy
4) Boss Butcher
5) Dr. Shock
6) K.C. Canton
7) Hellhunter
8) Bloody Lizzy
As a group you jive excellent. Totally enjoy the show.

Dave Becker said...

@Pratt: Thanks for stopping by, and for your rankings. We appreciate that you think, as a whole, we're strong (and no worries about stepping on toes...it's your honest opinion, and we appreciate that).

Thanks again for the comment, and for listening to Horror Jungle.

Anonymous said...

Hi Dr. Shock ♦ A few disagreements this morning ♦ Leviathan was a childhood hit. I am 30 and that + a few other movies brought my love of horror into the SciFi territory. I would give it a 9. Definitely worth a buy. ♦ Second disagreement host rankings listed by Pratt.

Mine
1-Bill
2-Dr.
3-Mummy
4-HH
5-Corey
6-Boss
7-KC
8-Liz

One thing I know we can agree on is that the Horror Jungle podcast is Awesome ♦ Awesome ♦ 2 Times Awesome.

Fred K.

Dave Becker said...

@Fred: Thanks for stopping by!

Opposing viewpoints are always welcome, and can only help in guiding people to new movies they might otherwise have overlooked. I thank you for posting your opinions regarding LEVIATHAN, and am glad it helped steer your love of the genre.

I also thank you for your host rankings.

Again, all opinions are welcomed, and I do appreciate you taking the time to post them. Thanks for stopping by, and for listening to Horror Jungle.

Anonymous said...

the horror jungle team continues to set the bar with the high level of intelligent discussions with horror movies. only 2 episodes in and it sounds like you have been doing it for years. entertaining all the way. virginia

Dave Becker said...

@Virginia: We certainly do appreciate the compliment. It means a lot to us all!

We're glad you're enjoying the Podcast. Thanks for stopping by, and for listening to Horror Jungle.

Anonymous said...

loved every minute of the latest episode thanks guys!

Dave Becker said...

Thanks for stopping by, and for listening to Horror Jungle. We're glad you enjoyed the show!

Anonymous said...

Greetings junglers! Great episode!

Browsing through the comments I would like to rate the hosts too! Please don't get offended anyone as a complete package of hosts it is fenominal!

1. Billchete
2. JoeMama (hehe Mummy)
3. Corey
4. Shocker
5. KC Creepy
6. the Boss (Bruce Springsteen hehe)
7. the Hunter from Hell
8. Liz the blood goddess

Sayonara, Juan

Anonymous said...

FIRST-CLASS HORROR PODCAST

Descriptive + Entertaining = A-1 (and I don't mean steak sauce) Pod

Dave Becker said...

Thanks for the comments!

@Juan: We do appreciate the rankings (always good to hear what the fans think), and no worries...we won't be offended! Thanks so much for taking the time to post them, and for listening to Horror Jungle.

@Anonymous: Thanks for the A-1 rating, and I like the steak sauce, so either one works for me :)

Thanks for the feedback, and for listening!

Anonymous said...

u dudes and dudette have an incredible pod going / any chance producing a video pod? i would like to c ure faces that would b fun 2.

Dave Becker said...

Thanks so much for the kind words. We do appreciate them.

As for a video pod, it's something that's been discussed, though never in great detail. I think it's a good idea, though one peek at MY face may just have you wishing I stayed behind the camera :)

Thanks again for the comment, and for listening to Horror Jungle.

Anonymous said...

My turn on the rankings and I am a voluptuous young {24} lady from the UK. No lady rankings until now. :) btw do you know the breakdown of male to female for the podcast?

{Abbrev.}
1) BC {excellent lead-never sways}
2) HH {sexy aussie-funny}
3) BL {ladies rules}
4) KC {smooth-on point}
5) MC {voice from the radio gods}
6) JM {impactful-wiggles to much}
7) DR {intelligent-to heady though}
8) BB {lovable-sounds unsure though}

fyi episode 1 and 2 I listened to twice. Swell horror podcast I wont miss a single episode. :)

Loves and kisses,
Karina :)

Dave Becker said...

@Karina: Thanks for stopping by, and for the ratings. Always nice to get a female point of view!

I'm pretty sure Billchete announced the male/female breakdown for Planet Macabre (I believe he did so in the fan episode), but as to what it is for Horror Jungle, I honestly have not heard.

So glad you're enjoying the podcast, and thanks for listening!

Anonymous said...

You guys are the best horror movie podcast out there.

Incredible work every one who is involved with Horror Jungle.

Gil
U.S.A.

Dave Becker said...

@Gil: Than you so very much! That is, indeed, a big compliment, and one we certainly appreciate.

Thanks for stopping by, and for listening to Horror Jungle.

Anonymous said...

Excellent podcast!

Dave Becker said...

We're glad you enjoyed it!

We appreciate the feedback, and thanks so much for listening.