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4.7 out of 5 stars
Crimson Tide (Extended Cut) [DVD]
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
After the 80's unthinking testosterone action movies, the 90's marked a real change in action ouput, even from the Bruckheimer / Simpson producing team - and so came about this unusually intelligent war movie.
Following in the tradition of classic submarine movies like `The Hunt for Red Octobe' or `Das Boot', there are all the traditional action notes you would expect - torpedo attack, flooding compartments, sinking towards crush depth etc., all done with the technical and editorial perfection you would expect from Tony `Top Gun' Scott. However, all the action is merely a backdrop for a real character study and moral dilemna.
Hackman's veteran Captain is of the old school, `I like things simple' approach. When unrest in Russia becomes critical enough for them to receive orders to launch their nuclear payload, he sets out to perform his duty. However, a second message is received - and it is incomplete, therefore can not be verified. The radio goes down, and the sub is now out of touch with the rest of the world. The `new school' Executive Officer played by Denzel Washington feels strongly enough that they should not follow through with the launch until the message is verified, leading him into direct conflict with the Captain and a tense, riveting and exciting showdown ensues.
The action is note perfect, but it is the acting that makes the movie stand out. Seeing Washington and Hackman `mano-a-mano', cannot fail to knock your socks off with its intensity. Indeed, all the actors have their moments to shine, including a pre-Lord of the Rings Viggo Mortensen, and an excellent George Dzundza playing `Chief of the Boat'.
One early scene encapsulates all that is good about the movie - in the officers mess, a philosophical debate occurs around the launching of the atomic bomb on Japan. Hackman defends the bombing, but Washington at the end of a verbal cat and mouse interplay, replies that `In the age of nuclear weapons, the true enemy is war itself. It is this conflict of ideas that haunts the movie, and the viewer, long after the movie is over. There are no out and out bad guys - just two principled men with different world views -surely there can be no greater drama.
The extended cut offers no substantial difference to the original, and seems to have little reason for existing. The scenes reinstated are almost all minor character moments, giving the minor characters in the movie more time to shine, and helping consolidate the feeling of camaraderie in the submarine, which makes the eventual schism that much more shattering. Other than that, there is a small documentary about the movie which is more promotional than educational. If you have not seen the movie, do so immediately. If you have, and wonder if the extended cut is worth getting? I say don't waste your time.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Russian rebels have seized one of their government's nuclear missile bases and are threatening to attack the U.S.A. A patrolling US nuclear submarine is ordered to fire, but almost straight afterwards an incomplete counter order brings uncertainty. The submarine Captain and the Executive Officer come into conflict as to which order to follow, and thus the subs crew are torn as to which officer is right or wrong.

Directed by Tony Scott, one could be forgiven for thinking that Crimson Tide would be an outlandish ball of explosions and slaughter, thankfully it isn't, as Scott gives us one of the best underwater thrillers going. Scintilating characters are cloaked in dynamic claustrophobia, and this coupled with the ever increasing unbearable tension, makes this a must see for fans of films that are scary because of what might happen, and not because of what many blockbuster film makers actually show you.

This is not a standard good vs evil plot piece, or even a good vs insane cretin film, this pitches old school stickler for the rules Captain Ramsey against the deep thinking common sense purveyor Lt Commander Ron Hunter. Ramsey believes that the completed order, which is basically to blast the Russians before they blast us type thing, should be followed, Hunter on the other hand feels that the second incomplete order must be clarified before any action is taken, because after all this could be nuclear war! The film then twists and turns as the sub is divided into two factions, mutiny is rife, but what will the outcome be? Can the radio be fixed to complete the order? Will it be too late? All these questions are tensely drawn out by Scott to get the maximum impact from what is an admittedly standard global crisis in waiting story.

No shortage of machismo here either, brutishly brilliant is how I find Gene Hackman in this, his Captain Ramsey is the quintessential leader of men. Then there is Denzel Washington as Ron Hunter, eloquently spoken and a voice of reason, his ruggedness coming to the fore as the submarine starts to implode. There are few better sights in 90s cinema than watching Hackman & Washington go at each other the way they do here, starting off as just a fractious relationship, it then explodes into a war of belief and wills. It's through these pair that the film's neutral stance shines bright, what would we do in similar circumstances? Who would we follow? Both men ethically right, yet both men accountable for probable disaster.

This is a wonderful picture, a lesson in tough tension building that is perfectly wrung out by a rousing Han Zimmer score, with the only weak point being a multi written script that tries to fuse pop culture references with technical lingo, something which doesn't quite sit right. However, even that can't hurt the excellently unfolding sequence of events that closes quite brilliantly with a written piece that all of us should take note of. 9/10
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
The film is packed with genuine 'tension' the world is on the brink of a nuclear holocaust,the sub's Captain 'Frank Ramsey' (Gene Hackman) is convinced the last order recieved gives authority for a devestating 'strike' ....but comunication is down, the number 'two' 'Lt Commander Ron Hunter' wants to wait for further communication which causes a serious split in the command chain.
Taking over the heavily armed vessel becomes the only option left for the number 'two' and those that feel the same way.
Both men have a point, but who's decision will turn out to be the right one ?
'Denzel Washington' and 'Gene Hackman' afford you some compelling viewing, this is such a good film, i've seen it several times before, but still wanted to watch it again on the 'Blu-ray' format,...........
The picture and sound quality is good throughout.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 11 December 2014
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Although not the best submarine thriller I've watched (Das Boot was superior) Crimson Tide still had enough drama and tension to make it one of the top films of the genre. Denzel Washington and Gene Hackman are in fine form as Hunter and Ramsey and they are supported by a fine cast. The interaction between the two leading men is superb, and both portray well-rounded and intense characters and, as the viewer, I never really knew who to support during the stand-off!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 2 November 2013
the film is almost perfect... HD transfer and sound are incredible given the age of the film but there is a huge plot hole [ !!!! SPOILER !!!! ] A captain who threatened to shoot a random rating in the head with his pistol to get information from another crew member would be prosecuted and jailed , not given early retirement [ !!!! SPOILER !!!! ] this oversight is so absurd it sticks out like a sore thumb. This film should not have had a happy ending.... simples..... but the rest of the film is as tight as a but so 4 stars easily if you can ignore that one plot-bomb.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 26 June 2013
And to think so many people wasted their time watching The Hunt for Red October. This is the better film by a country mile.

Denzel Washington is good, Gene Hackman is awesome and at times quite frightening. Hans Zimmer's score fits this epic film perfectly. Tony Scott's (RIP) direction is tight and he keeps momentum at all times.

The Blu Ray is significantly better than most 1990s films, with a surprisingly clean picture during the many dark scenes.
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SAFE READING - FEW SPOILERS

"Crimson Tide", 1995, starring Gener Hackman, Denzel Washington and Matt Craven, directed by Tony Scott, is an excellent film about a young officer who stages a mutiny to stop his older, trigger-happy captain from launching a nuclear missile before he is certain the appropriate authorisation has been issued. Although there is a great deal of action, it is not a macho film, testosterone driven but a thinking person's, intelligent film, although it does have all the scenes one would expect in a submarine film.

Washington and Hackman, two actors whose films I watch simply because their presence guarantees quality and films above the "ordinary", are excellent actors who oppose each other perfectly in this tense film; their standpoints are clearly mapped out early in the film as they debate the use of nuclear weapons on Nagasaki, which sets the scene for the later stand-off.

Highly recommended
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 11 February 2015
Run Silent Run Deep
The Enemy Below
The Hunt for Red October
Crimson Tide

Probably the 4 best up periscope films ever made

This has it's 2 leads on top form,excellent supporting cast,sound plot and storyline

Possibly the mutiny on a mutiny was uneccessary,but a top film anyway
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 5 April 2014
This film had the strapline: "tension you can chew" and that description is spot on. Hackman and Washington are perfectly cast as opposites in the claustrophobic and tense environment of a nuclear submarine. Not sure that the Blu-Ray is much better quality than the DVD, though...
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on 9 February 2008
Senior officers Gene Hackman and Denzil Washington star in a film about a mutiny on a nuclear submarine.

Hostilites between the USA and the USSR seem to have broken out again. When an incomplete order to open fire at an enemy target is received the two clash on its validy. With neither being prepared to back down, Denzil Washington leads a mutiny against his Captain knowing that the consequences of him being wrong are even more serious as his Captain being right.

Thus each of the crew is forced to take sides. As they fight for surpremacy, their submarine comes under attack from an enemy vessel. Even in this limited setting the action is fast and furious, and with a far from certain ending, there is much excitement and tension, is this highly charged claustrophobic atmosphere.

Give this a try, you will not be disappointed. So, sit back and enjoy.
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