OK, I'll level with you first: When I first read a preview of this in Total Film in 2001, I was intrigued. A haunted submarine, directed by David (Pitch Black) Twohy, with Darren Aronofsky's writing. Naturally, much imdb.com checking for the cinema release date...which never came, as it hit the mid-shelf of Blockbuster instead.
And that's a real shame. For this film, while not a technical marvel, is worth a look in if you're realising how bad the average Hollywood fodder is these days, or everyone else rented it.
It may not have any marquee stars (Jason Flemyng, Olivia Williams, Dexter Fletcher, and Holt McCallany from Fight Club), but is that a reason to switch off to the possibility it may be kinda good? After all, it is a very taught, tense, atmospheric horror film, with a few good twists in the plot that make it work much more than, say, the remake of The Haunting (if you haven't blanked that from your memory yet).
So, good acting, fantastic set-up, and many elements that work well, so why just three stars? Well, a few reasons:
1.) There are so many characters early on, you will get wires crossed due to the physical similarities between some of them - although the more distinguishable ones will obviously be alive longer.
2.) You will be able to spot the final twist within the first half hour.
3.) Despite its charms, and undeniable qualities, I would have to say it would be better as a rental than a Must Own, or Must Buy for that matter. Of course, if you do like the film, by all means add it to your collection, because it deserves to find an audience.
A potential late-night cult film for the future.