DARK WATERS (2003) Reviews and overview

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‘No air. No time. No escape.’

Dark Waters is a 2003 action film about the creator of bioengineered sharks who must destroy his monsters before they wreak havoc.

Directed by Phillip J. Roth (Deep Shock; New Alcatraz; Velocity Trap; A.P.E.X.) from a screenplay co-written with Brett Orr (Maximum Velocity). Produced by Jeffery Beach and Phillip J. Roth.

The Unified Film Organization (UFO) production stars Lorenzo Lamas, Simmone Mackinnon, Jeffrey Gorman, Ross Manarchy, Stefan Lysenko, Bruce Gray and Robert Zachar.


” …the idea of genetically engineered sharks was already done with Deep Blue Sea, which did it much better. Throw in the stereotypical government conspiracy, a son reunited with his lost father, narrow escapes which have no suspense because you know all the characters will live-and to top it off some of the worst computer animations I’ve seen since the movie Reptilian!” Buried.com

“it’s just an anonymous action movie and not even one that plays to Lamas’ strengths as a martial artist. Instead, there’s just a bunch of generic shooting and cliché action movie banter, at least when the movie’s not just drowning in exposition, its wallpaper score droning on and on, condemning Dark Waters to the murky depths of memory hole oblivion.” Oh, the Horror!


” …the physics of the computer-generated sharks are questionable, and there is some redundancy to the special effects that are too noticeable to ignore.  Cheesy sets and costumes fill the scenery, but it’s to be expected from a straight-to-video adventure like this.” Qwipster’s Movie Reviews

” …someone, right from the pre-production stage, didn’t want Dark Waters to be about sharks. The principal antagonist may very well be water itself. This is a good movie, but I don’t know who it’s for. It’s not exactly horror, not exactly sci-fi, and the action scenes are crammed in the third act. It succeeds best as tongue-in-cheek humor.” Tales of Terror

” …despite the fact that the sharks themselves play a disappointingly small part in the action, this energetic B pic is lots of fun. The action is non-stop, the attitude is somehow paranoid and nonchalant at the same time, and MacKinnon kicks butt with tremendous exuberance…” Upcoming Discs

Choice dialogue:

Robin Turner [Simmone Mackinnon]: “Stop the fatalistic crap man, it gives me the creeps!”

Robin Turner [Simmone Mackinnon]: “Don’t worry about me boys, I was already wet! ”


Cast and characters:

Lorenzo Lamas … Dane Quatrell
Simmone Mackinnon … Robin Turner
Jeffrey Gorman … John Miklos
Ross Manarchy … Doctor Dane Quatrell, II
Stefan Lysenko … Captain Yarborough
Bruce Gray … Summerville
Robert Zachar … Gaston
Rodrigo Abed … Doctor Combs
P.K. Ewing … Foster
Lee Williams … Johnston
D.J. Johnson … Kerry
Ana Shehtova … Joanne
Boriana Shehtova … Jillian
Tyrone Pinkham … Given
John Hansson … Officer on Dock
Jonas Talkington … Seaman Andrews
Jeff Rank … Real Estate Attorney
Mariana Stansheva … Speaker (as Marianne Stanicheva)
Jennifer Warkel … Summerville’s Assistant

Filming locations:

Sofia, Bulgaria

Technical details:

93 minutes
Audio: Dolby
Aspect ratio: 1.33: 1


MOVIES and MANIA says:

Dark Waters begins as a tongue-in-cheek action thriller that seems mildly amusing. Mildly. Unfortunately, it soon gets bogged down with the protagonists becoming stuck on a US Navy sub and all the dullness that is involved with lots of shouty military types. There is hardly any shark action. The score vaguely recalls John Carpenter’s Halloween (1978) – though played out much slower – which is a very minor plus.

MOVIES and MANIA rating:

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