Dead Calm (DVD, 2009)

9 ratings (6 Epinions reviews)
Epinions Product Rating: Very Good
5 stars
4 stars
5
3 stars
2 stars
1 star
1
Share This!
  Ask friends for feedback

Dead Calm - Nicole Kidman Gets Nude

Jan 12, 2003 (Updated Sep 19, 2008)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Interesting movie. Nicole Kidman, Sam Neil, and Billy Zane

Cons:Predictable at times

The Bottom Line: Dead Calm was predictable at times, but it was an entertaining movie. This was Nicole Kidman's first major movie.


I’m working more now, so I haven’t had as much time to watch movies, though I do still manage to catch some on television. Sometimes I end up staying up way too late to watch something. I had finished up for the week and had two days off, so I was able to stay up to watch all of Dead Calm when I found it just coming on. I first saw the movie several years ago when I rented it, and I have seen it another time or two when it was on television. Dead Calm wasn’t the best thriller I’ve ever seen, but it was good and I think it was worth watching.

PLOT

Rae and John Ingram had been married for several years and had a young son named Danny. One night Rae and Danny were in a horrible car accident and Danny was killed. Rae was having trouble getting over the accident. She and John decided to take a vacation on their yacht. Rae was still having nightmares about the accident.

They were all alone on the ocean when they saw another large boat off in the distance. Then they spotted a man in a rowboat heading in their direction. John and Rae let him come onto their boat. The man, Hughie Warriner, said he had been on the other boat with several other people. They all got food poisoning and Hughie was the only one that survived. They showed Hughie where he could rest for a while. John was having doubts about Hughie’s story, so he decided to take the rowboat over to the other boat, leaving Rae on their boat alone with a virtual stranger. They did lock the door of the room where Hughie was sleeping.

John headed off for the other boat, hoping to return before Hughie woke up and realized he was gone. Rae stayed up on deck, watching John’s progress. When he got to the other boat, he discovered that it was in horrible shape and taking on water. Everyone was dead, but John saw some things that lead him to believe that food poisoning was not involved. John started back to his own boat. Hughie woke up and realized what John was doing. Hughie was not happy about that. A few things happened, and John ended up back on the other sinking boat while Rae was trapped on her own boat with Hughie.

Hughie was acting crazy and violent. He was determined to keep John from returning to the boat. He had some wild mood swings. He just expected Rae to forget about her husband being trapped on a sinking boat and be happy with him now. He was very upset when she kept saying how she wanted to go back for him. Hughie seemed to be interested in Rae, and she used that to her advantage at one point. Rae was planning how she could go back for John.

CAST

Nicole Kidman - Rae Ingram
Sam Neil - John Ingram
Billy Zane - Hughie Warriner

Philip Noyce - Director

Terry Hayes wrote the screenplay

Dead Calm was made in 1989. The movie was 95 minutes long and rated R. This was not a movie that children should see. The movie was based on a book by Charles Williams. Dead Calm is available on VHS and DVD now. An edited version of the movie is shown on television every so often. Older children could probably watch the edited version, but parents should watch the movie to make that decision for themselves before allowing their child to see it. There was swearing in the movie. It has been a long time since I’ve seen the R-rated version, so I can’t remember how much swearing there was in that version, or if the word that rhymes with luck was used.

I think that Dead Calm is available in the wide screen format on DVD. I had to sit through the pan and scan version when I watched it again this time. I hate pan and scan. It was very annoying to me, and I would really like to see this in wide screen.

Dead Calm was a psychological thriller. There were some suspenseful moments scattered throughout the movie, though other things about it were predictable. Considering what was going on in the movie, and that the entire movie took place in the middle of the ocean, there were only a few possible outcomes. I did still enjoy the movie though. I don’t mind seeing predictable movies at times. There were times when I wasn’t exactly sure what would happen next, though I wasn’t greatly surprised by anything that did happen.

Most of the events in Dead Calm took place during a very short time span. The major events of the movie started when Hughie joined John and Rae on their boat. I think the rest of the movie took place over the next twenty four hours or so. The movie was fairly fast paced, though some scenes did move slower to build up some suspense and tension. The movie got my attention right from the beginning and I wasn’t bored by anything that happened.

There was violence in several scenes throughout Dead Calm and blood was shed more than once. There was more than one fight between characters in the movie. There were a few scenes in which a harpoon gun was used by one character for protection. Harpoons were shot from the gun and someone was hit. There were some very violent scenes in the movie that could be upsetting to some viewers. The edited version was still violent, but the more violent images were edited some. The R-rated version was much more violent. Anyone who doesn’t like to see violent movies shouldn’t see Dead Calm. Some things that happened in the movie were a bit disturbing.

Two of the main characters, Rae and John, were married, but there really wasn’t any romance in Dead Calm. There was a sex scene and Nicole Kidman was briefly nude in the R-rated version. That scene was edited in the version I saw on television, so there was just some skin shown instead of actual nudity. Some people could be offended by the scene. The sex scene was not a major focus of the movie, and there was just one of them. That scene did serve a purpose in the movie other than as an excuse to see Kidman naked. People who don’t like to see any sort of sex scene or nudity in a movie shouldn’t watch this movie.

Except for the first few minutes of the movie that depicted the accident, Dead Calm took place on the ocean, mainly on the Ingram’s boat. The boat looked to be in the middle of nowhere since there wasn’t land or any other boat in sight. A few scenes took place on the sinking boat that Hughie came from. There were some beautiful shots of the ocean in the movie. There were some interesting camera angles used in a few scenes that took place on the Ingram boat. Close ups of some of the actors were also used at times. Some music was played during some scenes. It sounded a little strange, but it didn’t bother me that much. In some other scenes, there was no music and all you could hear was one of the characters breathing.

There were really only three characters in Dead Calm, Rae, John, and Hughie. When the accident was shown at the beginning of the movie, Danny was briefly shown, along with some doctors and nurses in the hospital where Rae was taken. I thought that Rae was the main character of the movie. She had more scenes than the other two main characters. Rae did grow and change over the course of Dead Calm. She was still grieving over the death of her young son when Hughie showed up. She seemed to be fragile and in need of protection. After being stuck with Hughie on the boat, she became stronger. She had to do that to survive that experience. It is possible that having to deal with Hughie snapped her back to her old self from before the accident, but since we were never shown Rae before that, we just don’t know. Somehow Rae had to find the strength to do some not so nice things during her time with Hughie. She was tough, but she didn’t take some opportunities that she had to really get rid of him.

I thought that the acting in Dead Calm was good. This was the first big movie that Nicole Kidman was in and it gave her exposure in the States, which lead to other movies for her, like Days of Thunder. Nicole was young in this movie, and she did look a little different to me than she does now, mainly because of her hair. Now she wears it straight and it is lighter. In Dead Calm it was very curly, and red. My own hair is actually about as curly as hers was in this movie. She’s been wearing her hair straight for several years now, and it does make her look different. I did think she was good in this movie. Her character had to change in order to survive the circumstances she found herself in. She had some emotional scenes. I thought she was very believable at Rae.

Billy Zane was great as a psychotic man in Dead Calm. When I first saw this movie, I didn’t know who he was. It was just a few years ago when I saw part of the movie on television that I realized that he was in this movie. I have seen him in some other movies since I first saw this, and he has played some different characters. His character in Titanic wasn’t that nice either. He can play nasty, somewhat crazy men well. He had this crazed look in his eyes in several of his scenes in this movie. He was very believable in his role. Sam Neil was also good, though I didn’t think anything really stood out from his performance. I did think that he looked a little old to be married to Rae though. He just looked a lot older than she did.

CHARACTERS

Rae Ingram - She was still grieving over the death of her young son Danny. Rae had been in the accident too, but she wasn’t badly hurt. She and her husband were taking a vacation on their yacht so she could try to heal. She seemed to be fragile. She had nightmares about the accident. After Hughie showed up, she wasn’t pleased to be left alone with him on the boat. She had to quickly get stronger so she could deal with the situation. When she had to, she did what she had to do to survive.

John Ingram - He missed Danny too. John didn’t blame Rae for the accident. He was concerned about her and thought the sailing trip would be good for her. When Hughie showed up, John was skeptical about the story, so he headed over to the other boat to investigate. John ended up trapped on a sinking boat, but he didn’t give up. He was determined to get back to his own boat and Rae.

Hughie Warrriner - He had been on another boat with several other people. He claimed that everyone else on the boat had been killed by food poisoning. He managed to get John and Rae to let him on their boat. When Hughie figured out that John doubted the story and went to check the other boat, Hughie flipped out a bit and got violent to prevent John from coming back. He had some mood swings, going from a great, happy mood to being angry and violent when Rae said she wanted to go back for her husband. Hughie seemed unstable. He seemed to be interested in Rae.

I have seen better movies, but Dead Calm was good and worth watching. It was interesting to see an early movie from Nicole Kidman again after several years. Her fans should check this out if they haven’t seen it.

Related Reviews

Moulin Rouge
Moulin Rouge Soundtrack
The Others
Malice
Birthday Girl





Recommend this product? Yes

Read all comments (10)

Share this product review with your friends   
Share This!


Related Deals You Might Like...

Dead Calm [dvd] [canadian] - Dvd

Dead Calm [dvd] [canadian] - Dvd

Returning from duty with the Australian navy, John Ingram (Sam Neill) is surprised to be met by two policemen, who inform him of a car accident that h...
eBay

$6.91

+$2.99 shipping
Dead Calm (085391187028) - Dvd

Dead Calm (085391187028) - Dvd

Returning from duty with the Australian navy, John Ingram (Sam Neill) is surprised to be met by two policemen, who inform him of a car accident that h...
eBay

$5.51

+$2.99 shipping
Dead Calm (dvd) Phillip Noyce, Nicole Kidman, Sam Neill, Billy Zane,

Dead Calm (dvd) Phillip Noyce, Nicole Kidman, Sam Neill, Billy Zane,

Returning from duty with the Australian navy, John Ingram (Sam Neill) is surprised to be met by two policemen, who inform him of a car accident that h...
eBay

$14.94

+$3.95 shipping
Dead Calm (1989)
Walmart.com

$2.99

FREE Shipping
Dead Calm [VHS]

Dead Calm [VHS]

Brand New, Perfect Condition. May Ship From Overseas, Free Upgrade to Priority Shipping.
Sears Marketplace
Dead Calm (Blu-ray) Blu-Ray from Warner Bros.

Dead Calm (Blu-ray) Blu-Ray from Warner Bros.

Take an ocean voyage of full-masted fright with Dead Calm, a spare, smart, seductive piece of moviemaking with enough tension to keep us all hypervent...

$7.19

+$2.50 shipping
- Dead Calm

- Dead Calm

Returning from duty with the Australian navy, John Ingram (Sam Neill) is surprised to be met by two policemen, who inform him of a car accident that h...
eBay

$12.98

+$2.99 shipping
Dead Calm (blu-ray)

Dead Calm (blu-ray)

Returning from duty with the Australian navy, John Ingram (Sam Neill) is surprised to be met by two policemen, who inform him of a car accident that h...
eBay

$9.17

+$1.90 shipping
Dead Calm Blu-ray

Dead Calm Blu-ray

Returning from duty with the Australian navy, John Ingram (Sam Neill) is surprised to be met by two policemen, who inform him of a car accident that h...
eBay

$7.74

+$2.99 shipping