“Deep Rising” isn’t a movie. It’s an emetic.
The most effective scene, gag reflex-wise, involves a guy vomited up by a vile creature. The guy’s protracted death throes include a moment in which he turns sideways to the camera, wails and shows us that half of his head is missing and the half that remains is bubbling, spitting and decomposing. Slowly.
In every other aspect, “Deep Rising” is as frenetic as can be. It’s an entirely unoriginal movie, but it does manage to combine material recycled from three other types of films: “Die Hard” (the fight against an international band of terrorists), “The Poseidon Adventure” (people trapped on a disaster-bound cruise ship) and “Alien” (a tentacled, grossly moist creature menacing the terrorists and cruisers).
The only thing the movie has going for it is a sense of humor. Kevin J. O’Connor, the guy who makes the “Girl From Ipanema” crack in the “Deep Rising” ads, is amusing as a cynical whiner. He sticks out in the cast because he gets to make jokes while everyone else is busy breaking things and shooting automatic weapons (there’s a lot of machoness on display - these terrorists kick each other in the crotch like most people say “Hi”).
Besides O’Connor, the other meat - er, actors - don’t have much of a chance to do anything but get devoured. For the most part, director Stephen Sommers ignores the actors in favor of carnage. In fact, in one scene, you’re supposed to think an actor is dead, but you’ll know he couldn’t possibly be dead because, if he were, the camera would have lingered over every bloody, twisting moment of it.
xxxx “Deep Rising” Location: North Division, Spokane Valley Mall, Showboat. Credits: Directed by Stephen Sommers; starring Treat Williams, Kevin J. O’Connor Running time: 1:48 Rating: R