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"BELOW"
(2002) (Bruce Greenwood, Matt Davis) (R)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Minor Extreme Extreme *Heavy Heavy
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Mild Heavy Extreme None Extreme
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Moderate Mild None Mild Extreme


QUICK TAKE:
Suspense/Horror: After picking up three survivors at sea, a WWII submarine crew encounters bizarre and fatal occurrences that soon lead them to believe that their sub might be haunted.
PLOT:
It's August 1943 and Lieutenant Brice (BRUCE GREENWOOD) and his crew of the U.S.S. Tiger Shark have rescued three survivors from a hospital ship torpedoed two days earlier. They are navigator Kingsley (DEXTER FLETCHER), British nurse Claire Paige (OLIVIA WILLIAMS) and her badly wounded patient, Schillings (JONATHAN HARTMAN).

With England being a 300-mile detour off their current course, Brice informs the survivors that they have no choice but travel with them and the sub quickly dives below the surface to avoid detection by an enemy ship. During a close encounter with some depth charges, a record player suddenly starts playing and gives away their location, eventually leading Brice to kill Schillings upon learning that he's German and believing that he tried to sabotage them.

Not long after that, various people, such as Claire as well as crewmembers Hoag (ANDREW HOWARD) and Stumbo (JASON FLEMYNG), begin experiencing weird and spooky events on the sub. Ensign Odell (MATT DAVIS) can't believe that anyone on board the sub would purposefully try to sabotage them, but second-in-charge Lieutenant Loomis (HOLT McCALLANY) quickly dismisses any sort of jinx or supernatural explanations.

After Claire starts poking around and noticing odd and missing entries in the captain's journal, Brice informs her of the accident that took the life of the former commanding officer, Captain Winters (NICK HOBBS). Yet Claire doesn't believe him, and soon other crewmembers such as Coors (SCOTT FOLEY), Chief (NICK CHINLUND) and Weird Wally (ZACH GALIFIANAKIS) begin to notice both the weird occurrences and Brice's increasingly volatile nature.

As the sub tries to return to its Connecticut base, more bizarre, seemingly supernatural and deadly occurrences ensue, all of which endanger the sub and its remaining crew as they try to figure out what's going on.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're into scary films, WWII era submarine flicks or are fans of anyone in the cast, they just might.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For language and some violence.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • BRUCE GREENWOOD plays the commander of the sub who must not only deal with the bizarre and fatal occurrences on his boat, but also his self-doubts about being able command her as well as his involvement in a cover-up. He shoots a German man dead and uses profanity.
  • HOLT McCALLANY plays his second in command, another lieutenant who wants him to stay the course and not give in to the rumors of supernatural events or curses. He uses profanity.
  • MATT DAVIS plays an ensign who begins to question what's going on as well as Brice's command.
  • OLIVIA WILLIAMS plays a British nurse who's rescued by the sub crew and must put up with their catcalls and related remarks toward her as well as what seems to be a haunting on the ship. Highly opinionated and no wallflower, she speaks her mind at will. She briefly uses strong profanity.
  • SCOTT FOLEY plays a crewmember who smokes.
  • ANDREW HOWARD and JASON FLEMYNG play other crewmembers.
  • ZACH GALIFIANAKIS plays another crewmember who's something of an intellectual but a bit weird.
  • NICK HOBBS plays the sub's original captain who met an untimely death onboard the sub.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Here's a brief summary of the content found in this R-rated horror film. Profanity consists of at least 12 "f" words, while other expletives and colorful phrases are also used. Violence includes several deaths by gunshot or other means (one in the form of a suicide), many crewmembers being incinerated or killed in other accidents (with graphic results), struggling, threatening and crewmembers being thrashed out in the sub.

    Some of those scenes have bloody results and may be unsettling or suspenseful, as might various supernatural ones (and various "jump scenes") that might also be scary to viewers. A man's bare butt is briefly seen in a nonsexual context, various characters have varying degrees of bad attitudes, while one drinks and another smokes.

    Should you still be concerned about the film's appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home, you may want to look more closely at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • We see an old photo of a man with a drink.
  • Stumbo has a drink.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • A rescued man has burns/blood on his skin.
  • A man comments on the other men finally washing the "butt squirt" out of their shorts.
  • We see some blood on Brice's hand and gun after he shoots a man dead. We later see him washing his hand and see some bloody water in a bowl.
  • We see a dead and bloody man with what looks like a broken pencil in his mouth (holding it open).
  • We see some blood stains on fabric that's covering a dead body as two men move it through the sub. One of them then sees fresh blood soaking into that fabric.
  • We see a flashback image of a man landing in the water (seen from below) with some blood coming from his head.
  • We see some blood in the water after an accident and then see the very bloody sailor in the water.
  • Loomis has some blood on his hand from slamming it down hard on something.
  • We see many charred corpses on the sub after hydrogen ignited and burned all of them to a crisp (there's one survivor in this area, but he's badly burned).
  • A man exits the sub while it's still submerged and tries to swim to the surface (without any air tank), but is impaled by part of the passing sub and killed. We see some blood from his body (from a distance).
  • Claire holds a man whose head is very bloody and she has blood on her hands and clothes.
  • A man shoots himself in the head with some bloody results.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • It becomes known that some crewmembers did something bad in the past (ended up killing one of their own) and are trying to cover it up.
  • Various crewmembers make sexist remarks and catcalls upon seeing Claire onboard and call her a "skirt," "filly," "bleeder" "Brillo pad" and "broad."
  • Some guys (Hoag and Stumbo) pull a ghostly prank on Claire.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Scenes listed under "Violence" may also be unsettling or suspenseful to some viewers, as might much of the film once the eerie things start occurring in the tight and dark confines of the sub. In addition, those with low tolerance levels for such spooky material will obviously find it more frightening and/or suspenseful than more hardened viewers.
  • The sub tries to rescue three people at sea and then dive before an approaching enemy ship gets to them.
  • We hear the sounds of a survivor who's in pain.
  • The sub crew tries to remain quiet as an enemy ship passes overhead. Suddenly, a record player starts playing quite loudly and they race to stop it. Depth charges then float down toward the sub and explode near it, violently shaking the sub and thrashing around the men inside it. We then see (and the men hear) one lone depth charge slowly bouncing along the sub's hull and then teetering along a railing.
  • A record player starts playing and then turns itself off (we hear the music slowing down) as Brice approaches.
  • Claire hears a ghostly voice telling her to "get off before it's too late."
  • A sailor suddenly gets a chill onboard the sub.
  • A sailor near a dead (and covered) body suddenly hears ghostly voices. He then cautiously leans in toward the covered head to see if that's where the voices are coming from.
  • Claire suddenly finds a book on the floor where it hadn't been there moments before. She then hears a voice reading what she's reading.
  • The lights go out in part of the sub and a silhouetted figure is seen.
  • The crew listens as huge hooks from a ship above them scrape the sub and rip parts of it open, flooding the sub (and everyone tries to scramble to safety).
  • Huge manta rays suddenly swim about some crewmembers who are outside the sub (below the surface).
  • Two teams of two men split up in between the hulls of the submarine as they try to fix some leakage and all of them are a bit spooked by what's been happening and their new dark environs. One thinks he sees something, then there's a bloody accident, and three flee the scene. They then hear the sounds of the man who was left behind, but say that he can't be alive.
  • The crew hears all sorts of weird noises in and outside the sub while submerged.
  • We see many charred corpses on the sub after hydrogen ignited and burned all of them to a crisp (there's one survivor in this area, but he's badly burned).
  • A man notices that his reflection in a mirror is taking too long to follow what he's doing. As he turns his back to it, we then see the reflection turn on its own.
  • A man exits the sub while it's still submerged and tries to swim to the surface (without any air tank), but is impaled by part of the passing sub and killed.
  • Sounds are heard coming from Brice's quarters from behind a closed curtain. A person then slowly approaches that, but the lights go out and a figure is seen.
  • Claire hears sounds and thinks she sees a person on a bunk. She then hears breathing and approaching footsteps.
  • The surviving crewmembers/passengers must deal with a deranged an armed officer.
  • A man holds a gun to a woman's neck and then throws her to the sub's deck. She then holds the gun in his hand to her throat and dares him to kill her.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Handguns: Used to shoot a man dead, threaten others, shoot up some radio equipment, shoot an already dead body and commit suicide.
  • Depth charges float down toward the sub and explode near it, violently shaking the sub and thrashing around the men inside it.
  • Machine gun: Grabbed by a sailor.
  • Miniature gun: Found inside a box of Cracker Jacks.
  • Torpedo: Seen in a flashback being fired.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "F*ck no," "You're so f*cking out of bounds with that sh*t," "F*ck if I know," "Get the f*ck off me," "F*ck me" (nonsexual), "You f*cking coward," "Will you pinch this sh*t off?" "Horsesh*t," "Grow some d*cks and shut up," "What the hell/are you doing?" "Krauts" (WWII era Germans), "Skirt," "Filly," "Bleeder" "Broad" and "Brillo Pad" (woman), "Idiots," "Lucky bastards," "Hard on" (erection, but not used in a sexual context) and "Crapped out."
  • A character commits suicide by shooting himself in the head.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • A light bulb suddenly shatters during a tense moment where an explosion is expected.
  • A sudden announcement during a tense scene might startle some viewers.
  • Sudden music and a locker door suddenly opening might startle some viewers.
  • An image suddenly flashes on the screen.
  • A person's hand is suddenly on another person's shoulder.
  • Some sudden loud sounds might startle some viewers.
  • A person suddenly surprises another person.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • An extreme amount of ominous and suspenseful music plays in the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 12 "f" words, 6 "s" words, 1 slang term each using male and female genitals ("d*ck" and "c*nt"), 3 hells, 1 crap, 1 S.O.B., 8 uses of "G-damn," 2 each of "God" and "Jesus" and 1 use each of "Christ," "Jesus Christ," "Oh God" and "Sweet Holy Jesus" as exclamations
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • We see a man looking at a girlie magazine but don't see anything explicit. We also see various vintage pinups (but again nothing explicit).
  • We see Loomis' bare butt in a nonsexual situation.
  • SMOKING
  • Coors smokes several times.
  • Kingsley comments on having a cigarette.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • None.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Life and service on a WWII era submarine.
  • Whether the events on the sub were the result of supernatural events or just bad luck, accidents and poor decisions.
  • VIOLENCE
  • A sailor playfully punches another.
  • Depth charges float down toward the sub and explode near it, violently shaking the sub and thrashing around the men inside it (with some smacking up against the ceiling).
  • Brice shoots a prisoner dead as the man reaches for a knife (we don't see the impact, but do see blood in the room and on Brice's hand).
  • Brice throws a record player across a room.
  • We see a flashback image of a man landing in the water (seen from below) with some blood coming from his head.
  • The crew listens as huge hooks from a ship above them scrape the sub and rip parts of it open, flooding the sub (and everyone tries to scramble to safety).
  • We see a flashback that briefly shows some men struggling and then see this again with one hitting another with something and sending him falling into the water.
  • A sailor (holding a large mallet) slips and seemingly lands on a man below him in the water. We then see the very bloody sailor in the water.
  • A sailor punches Claire.
  • Loomis has some blood on his hand from slamming it down hard on something.
  • We see many charred corpses on the sub after hydrogen ignited and burned all of them to a crisp (we don't see that occur and there's one survivor in this area, but he's badly burned).
  • A man exits the sub while it's still submerged and tries to swim to the surface, but is impaled by part of the passing sub and killed.
  • Claire smacks a sailor who was losing it (his mind) and he comes at her (but is held back).
  • A person appears to be hit by a flying object inside the sub.
  • More crewmembers are thrashed about inside the sub.
  • Claire holds a man whose head is very bloody.
  • A man backhands another man, pushes another backwards and then shoots up some radio equipment with his handgun.
  • A man holds a gun to a woman's neck and then throws her to the sub's deck. She then holds the gun in his hand to her throat and dares him to kill her.
  • A man repeatedly shoots an already dead body.
  • A man shoots himself in the head.



  • Reviewed October 10, 2002 / Posted October 18, 2002

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