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Overall Rating
2.07

Awesome: 4.65%
Worth A Look: 11.63%
Just Average: 18.6%
Pretty Crappy: 16.28%
Sucks48.84%

5 reviews, 13 user ratings


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Into the Blue
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by Peter Sobczynski

"A film made by, for and about ginormous boobs."
1 stars

Look, I am not claiming to be immune to the charms of a silly bit of T&A–I am the guy, after all, who has raved in the past about the genius of “Coyote Ugly” and “Resident Evil.” However, “Into the Blue” is so stupid that it winds up distracting from that simple pleasure. Case in point: there is a sequence in the film in which a character is explaining the legend of the ship he is searching for to his friends. The scene starts with them talking in a living room and then cuts to them out at dinner, even though the conversation picks up exactly where it left off from the previous shot. From there, the same thing happens again–the scene cuts to a bonfire at a beach at night but with no lapse in the conversation. Therefore we have to assume that they were talking, stopped to go out for dinner and didn’t pick up the conversation until after dinner. Then, they stopped the conversation again and didn’t continue it until after they made their way to the beach and built a bonfire. This may seem irrelevant and I would normally agree, except for one little thing: in a film that promises two hours of sexy underwater thrills with a scantily-clad Jessica Alba, the last things I should be noticing are the flaws in the montage.

Alba and Paul Walker star as Sam and Jared, a pair of sweet young dopes eking out a living in the Caribbean–he is a diving instructor who yearns to repair his boat and become a treasure hunter while she is a shark expert who works in an aquatic theme park with the kind of flex time that allows her to never show up at work again once it is established that she is employed. This is a good thing for her because her free time quickly becomes filled up when Jared’s sleazy brother Bryce (Scott Caan) and his skank du jour Amanda (Ashley Scott) arrive for a few days of vacation in a luxury estate owned by Bryce’s sleazy law firm. While out skin diving one day, the group stumble upon both the possible remains of a legendary ship that supposedly contains hundreds of millions in doubloons and the actual wreck of an airplane and discover that it contains a couple of dead bodies and hundreds of millions of dollars worth of cocaine. Because they are sleazy types, Bryce and Amanda want to grab some of the coke and make a big killing but the poor-but-honest Sam and Jared want to do the right thing and refuse. However, their nobility only goes so far and they decide to keep the plane a secret from the authorities until they can clearly establish a claim on the remains of the ship.

This is how things go for about an hour until the filmmakers seem to belatedly realize that even a transparent T&A excuse like this needs some kind of plot to keep things moving along. Bryce and Amanda sneak out one night to the wreck and snatch some of the cocaine and then make the mistake of trying to sell it to the very people who lost it in the first place. As a result, the lead drug runner (James Frain) makes Jared an offer he can’t refuse–retrieve all of the drugs in 12 hours or he and Sam will be sleeping with the fishes more often than usual. Mustering all the idealism that he can, Jared agrees as long as the bad guys give him $30,000 for rental equipment so that he can uncover proper proof of the wreck once and for all. No doubt realizing that she will be jeopardizing her future as a bound damsel in distress if she goes along, Sam refuses to help out with the plan and the retrieval is fatally interrupted. This leads, as it must, to a desperate final battle between our heroes and the gun-toting bad guys, led by a secret villain who I won’t reveal, except to say that I had to agree with Jared when he asks the person why, considering who they turn out to be, they couldn’t find the wreck themselves in the first place.

“Into the Blue” is loosely based on Peter Benchley’s novel “The Deep”–so loosely, in fact, that Benchley’s name is mentioned nowhere in the credits, no doubt to his eternal relief. That book, you may also recall, was also the basis of a fairly terrible 1977 film that is remembered today for containing exactly two worthwhile elements–the contents of the wet T-shirt worn by Jacqueline Bisset in the opening scene. Considering that the book was pretty terrible, even by Benchley’s less-than-sterling standards, the idea to junk most of it was probably a good idea but this film has somehow managed to contrive a storyline even dumber and more predictable than the original. This is the kind of film where the screenplay and the costumes can be described using the same words; “skimpy” and “all wet.” This is the kind of film where a scene can feature a line of dialogue like “Shut up, you coke whore!” and it isn’t the worst line in the scene. This is the kind of movie where our innocent and pure heroes can nevertheless slaughter all of their enemies and giddily sail into the sunset without any lasting physical or emotional scars The only dramatic innovation here seems to have been the addition of the slutty girl in an effort to join Jessica Alba in doubling the number of good parts on display.

Some of you out there may be a bit put off by my seeming obsession in this review with the concept of Jessica Alba in a bikini but I am simply reporting the facts–she is a gorgeous woman and director John Stockwell seems to clearly realize that it is the only thing that most viewers are going to be focusing on. To that end, although he tries to build a little suspense by keeping her out of a swimsuit for the first 12 minutes or so, she spends most of the film in a series of stamp-sized outfits displaying a body that he never gets tired of exploring–at one point, he literally swims the camera into her cleavage underwater in a shot that Russ Meyer would have applauded. However, even this aspect winds up having diminishing returns because we know that while she won’t be wearing anything more, we also know that she won’t be wearing anything less either–partly because of the PG-13 rating and partly because if she wouldn’t undress to play a stripper in a good movie like “Sin City,” she certainly wouldn’t waste such a reveal on the likes of this.

And yet, Alba is probably the best thing about this movie because, unlike the others, she has the harmless and likable nature of a puppy dog that you simply can’t resist even when it does something stupid. Walker gets to redo the other-white-meathead schtick that he developed in the “Fast and the Furious” films–with the possible exception of Dr. Evil, no one in film history has ever sounded lamer when trying to deploy slang as he does when saying things like “I got your back, dog!” and, when describe a fearsome pirate of old, “He and his crew–they were gnarly.” Caan is just an unpleasant and idiotic dope from beginning to end–imagine a less-likable version of Jake Busey–and Scott is stuck in a nothing role as the skank who gets the kind of retribution for her sins that Cecil B. DeMille might have conceived of, assuming, of course, that he somehow found himself directing terrible bikini-and-drug extravaganzas.

Watching “Into the Blue” is a lot like spending 110 minutes standing in a theater lobby staring at its poster–the only difference is that the poster contains a little more dramatic tension. This is a bubble-brained thriller that figures that no one will notice all of the story flaws as long as there are enough sexy bodies in tiny outfits on display to distract one’s attention. The result will no doubt play as a feast for the eyes of anyone who has let their “Maxim” subscription lapse but even the most desperately horny 14-year-old boy in the audience will slowly come to the astonishing realization that even they require a little more from a movie than the sight of a barely-dressed hottie for a film to be satisfying.

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=13125&reviewer=389
originally posted: 09/29/05 23:55:50
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User Comments

9/02/08 PAUL SHORTT THE CHARACTERS SEEM AS SHALLOW AS THE WATERS THROUGH WHICH THEY PADDLE 1 stars
4/20/07 krrish alba is hot in bikni 3 stars
4/12/07 Brett I find this to be an Awsome movie,can't understand the extreme different views 5 stars
3/05/07 David Pollastrini Jessica Alba is hot! 2 stars
1/27/07 Jeff Anderson Well directed by Stockwell & surprisingly good. Shane Hurlbut's cinematography is AWESOME!! 4 stars
4/02/06 l I want this critic's job. He has no talent to judge anything 4 stars
12/30/05 othree Alot of Hype, just short of everything, what cable chans are made for 3 stars
11/17/05 The Velcro Warlock Some suspense augments views of Jessica Alba's near-bare ka-ka kissers. 4 stars
11/07/05 M.T. does anybody knows the song (when they where in the club-it was a hip hop song)?artist... 4 stars
11/03/05 emma Paul walker is amazing in it go and see it 5 stars
10/05/05 Jessie I wasted hours of my life watching this movie. 1 stars
10/01/05 Randy I thought it was a good moral story 4 stars
9/30/05 Jakub Yeah, yeah, yeah...but do we see Jessica Alba's tits???? 1 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  30-Sep-2005 (PG-13)
  DVD: 26-Dec-2005

UK
  N/A

Australia
  20-Oct-2005


Directed by
  John Stockwell

Written by
  Matt Johnson

Cast
  Paul Walker
  Jessica Alba
  Josh Brolin
  Dwayne Adway
  Scott Caan
  Ramon Saunders



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