The Abyss ★★★½

Everything that is done here is done in the most complicated way possible, and so a real insanity animates The Abyss, mostly heightened and not denied by its familyish remarriage plotline and safely anthropocentric sense of wonder that domesticates the 'unknown' as godlike. This has its drawbacks: in flirting with the real it robs us of artifice, and in resorting to artifice it robs us of the real (see point 9), but this agitation is so baked into what otherwise pretends to be drab or wonderful, it all comes to constitute its enigma. A weird ship uncle movie, a drunk mum movie, even a cousin movie, The Abyss does it all.

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