Underwater ★★★½


"There's a comfort in cynicism. There is a lot less to lose."

Saved by the gnarly B-movie satisfaction of an economically self-aware aquatic creature feature, the relentless gleefulness/tension of navigating the desolate darkness of the vast ocean floor, and Kristen Stewart's talented articulation of simultaneous confidence and terror that ripples across her every action and expression. Crowd-pleasing blockbuster thrills which never offers a breather to lessen the high-pressure destruction of one's own bearings, yet consequently plays out like a survival horror video game and leads to one hell of a final killer battle; a submerged wave of effective, albeit derivative monster melee entertainment - one whose explicit shallowness materializes enough palpable anxiety to elevate its nightmare scenario and thus keep the entire endeavor afloat. Not to mention the gorgeous catalog of slick visual triggers, often occurring during the indoor scenery and somewhat faltering throughout the outdoor sequences. Let's hope this is T. J. Miller's last film... 🤢

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