Leviathan (1989) Deep Sea Mining Crew Become Mutant Fish Food Fodder

Leviathan (1989) Peter Weller Richard Crenna sci-fi aliens horror vhs video cassette cover box

Day 13 Leviathan from 1989

Tagline –Aliens thrilled you… The Fly shocked you… Now experience real fear…

Who’s our hero today?
Robocop himself Peter Weller plays geologist Steven Beck

Had I seen this one on VHS back in the day?
Hell yeah. An Alien rip-off inspired by The Fly and The Thing mutations set in the future! Leviathan wouldn’t of even touched the video shelve and I’d been out the door leaving a cloud of dust behind.

Quick plot run down.
A crew of deep-sea miners uncover a mysterious Soviet ship wreck on the ocean floor. With some of the crew salvaging items back to base camp it’s not long before a dark secret is revealed from a recorded message from the Russian Captain. Soon the mining crew will discover, with horrifying results, just why the ship called the Leviathan was scuttled and deliberately sunk to the bottom of the ocean floor.

Leviathan (1989) Peter Weller head band ready to go commando

Does the hero have a day job?
Steven Beck is a scientist and geologist. He’s like the captain of the group and also the maintenance guy.

What’s our heroes special skills?
Level headed and by the books but maverick when he needs to be. He’s also pretty handy with a futurist long screwdriver!

Heroes weapon of choice?
Whatever mining equipment that’s lying around that could make a good weapon. However he settles on one big mo-fo monster-frying flamethrower.

Heroes drink of choice?
Pepsi must’ve paid a whole heap of dollar on this movie. Jeez they went to town on product placement. Can’s, posters and even vending machines installed everywhere 16,000 feet deep in the ocean!

Leviathan (1989) Peter Weller and the mining ship crew before the carnage

Does hero have a sidekick?
Beck’s got a whole crew of them stuck down in the underwater bloodshed and carnage prison cage. Here’s the mutant fish food, which one goes first?
Dr. Glen ‘Doc’ Thompson (Richard Crenna)
Elizabeth ‘Willie’ Williams (Amanda Pays)
Buzz ‘Sixpack’ Parrish (Daniel Stern)
Justin Jones (Ernie Hudson)
Tony ‘DeJesus’ Rodero (Michael Carmine)
Bridget Bowman (Lisa Eilbacher)
G.P. Cobb (Hector Elizondo)

Hot girl? Damsel in distress or ass kicker?
The whole crew become damsel’s in distress but as there’s only two ladies on the crew, Bridget and Elizabeth can take the hot girls spots. With Elizabeth getting more involved in the ass kicking department with, well, come on guys give the lady something a bit better than a blooming hedge trimmer to fight with?

Who’s the main baddie?
Some would say the sexy smoking headmistress looking Evil-Lyn (Meg Foster) from Masters of the Universe (1987) but then others might be inclined to say a mutant foot fish flesh leg thing is the real, ruin your day, baddie here.

Baddies special skills?
To never die, mutate and adapt to it’s new surroundings. To survive to infect and grow.

Psycho baddies rating out of ten? 10/10
It’s relentless, forever growing. Gaining intelligence and a hunger to expand further out.

Heroes balls of steel and anger ratings out of ten? 9/10
As Beck throws a stick of dynamite “‘Say hi’, motherfucker!

Surely it features a training montage scene?
We do get treated to a quick “getting tooled up” montage. Raiding the tool cupboard for mutant smashing, burning and chopping weapons. Those big ass flamethrowers, some kind of tungsten toothed rock cutting chainsaw and a, and a umm, what really? poor Elizabeth’s hedge-trimmer!!!

Leviathan (1989) Ernie Hudson with a flame thrower 80s action horror

Does it feature an impossible mission?
16 thousand feet under the sea with bone crushing pressures, a breaking down air system, no emergency escape life pods and a crazy sea monster mutant on the rampage. The mission of survival is looking horribly impossible?

Does the hero get a chance to show off their muscles?
Peter Weller isn’t known for his ripping his shirt off to show his steroid induced bulging pectoral muscles is he?

Will I be needing to pause the video player? AKA are there any boobies?
Not on today’s film choice. You did get a fair few innuendos. Mainly from the mouth of Sixpack “Oh, mama! What a pair.“. Oh and we do get a little quick bra and pantie shower scene with Elizabeth which is a bonus.

Sex scene?
Only Sixpack getting ready to go it alone in his bunk bed with a centerfold. He nearly got more digits added to his five knuckle shuffle!!!!

Leviathan (1989) Peter Weller beck Elizabeth Williams (Amanda Pays)

Any good totally random surprise scenes?
If you know the freak-show that horrified us in John Carpenter’s The Thing (1982) then this will be a walk in the park! Well it’s still pretty darn terrifying!  This time we encounter the combining of human body parts with a fusion of marine life creatures. To metamorphoses, dice and slice organic matter into each other. The fundamental human form is still there somewhere, buried deeply and freakishly mutated. The dead come back to life growing through into the DNA of what ever mutation would help it best to adapt to it’s new environment. Yeah you will be finding some totally random surprise scenes here.

Films body count? Low/Medium/High
There’s only eight crew members for our psychotic porpoise. Is eight a high number in 80s action body count stats? Of course not. The meter can only, in good conscience, swing to low. However saying that, if it gets to the surface? That meter reader will smash through the roof. Humankind could be annihilated!

Innocent baddie death rate?
One might get a fat lip?

Explosion ratio? Low/Medium/High?
A few explosions here and there but it’s it the mega implosion that’s the money shot here.

How many stuntmen probably really died making this film?
Hopefully no stuntmen drowned of set as I read the “dry for wet” technique was used, where filters and camera tricks simulate the feeling of being underwater whereas in fact they are using a dry staged set.

Any cool car chases?
We deep on the ocean bed but yeah I know they still could’ve been some sort of underwater car chase! Nah it didn’t happen this time.

Best lines
There’s a fair few great lines dotted about and I’m gonna pick these two as my favorite.
Jones – (to the doctor) “How come you are wearing those gloves? It ain’t bend-over time, is it?
Sixpack – (wants to do on his downtime) “Drinking brews and eating pussy!

Leviathan (1989) Ernie Hudson Richard Crenna doc gloves

Any other familiar faces and actors pop up?
Most the crew is recognizable so I’ll just add one thing next their names as I’d be writing for days.
Peter Weller is Murphy from Robocop (1987). Richard Crenna will always be Col. Trautman from Rambo (1985) and the sequels. Amanda Pays starred alongside Willem Dafoe and Gregory Hines in Off Limits (1988). Daniel Stern famously partnered with Joe Pesci in Home Alone (1990). Ernie Hudson is the forth Ghostbuster (1984) Winston. I don’t know Hector Elizondo myself from any films but I see he’s big on TV series. Lisa Eilbacher starred alongside Charles Bronson in 10 To Midnight (1983). Meg Foster only has a small role here but she’s a legend, I’ll go with They Live (1988) It’s sad to read that Michael Carmine died at the very young age of 30. He played a great part as Carlos in Batteries Not Included (1987)

Production Credits
Leviathan is directed by George P. Cosmatos who made the total awesome all-star cast assemble of Tombstone (1993) and also last weeks Cobra (1986) and Rambo First Blood Part II (1985).
The film is co-written by Jeb Stuart who did screenplays for Die Hard (1988) and The Fugitive (1993) and David Webb Peoples who is a sci-fi legend for working on Blade Runner (1982), 12 Monkeys (1995), Soldier (1998) and The Blood of Heroes (1989)

Cheese-O-Meter! Low/Medium/High?
I would say this is low but man the “alien” style fishy parts are pretty damn cheesy. It’s hovering the meter right close to medium.

Leviathan (1989) under scene deep sea mining 80s action

IMDB score rating – 5.8/10

Wolfman ACTION & FUN rating – 8/10

Wolfman over all film rating – 7/10

Closing thoughts………………………………………….
Yeah of course it’s riding on the waves of those big named science fiction films like Alien, The Thing etc and Leviathan isn’t in the same league at all. However it’s very well made. The underwater scenes are excellent, the deep sea diving suits have a great looking design to them. The crew all have their quirks and fit into place inside the base ready to fulfill their destiny to be mashed, smashed and pulverised. I very much enjoyed revisiting this submerged sci-fi action horror.

Feel free to let me know your thoughts on the films if you want but please don’t feel you need to as I know it’s pretty relentless this month. However, most important, have fun with the movies.

Keep it filmy…. Mikey Wolf.

PS Random Odd factoidAmanda Pays is featured in the music video for Sade’s massive hit Smooth Operator in 1984. So with awesomely no relatedness at all to body morphing gore and freakishness I bring you Sade to sing us out!

14 thoughts on “Leviathan (1989) Deep Sea Mining Crew Become Mutant Fish Food Fodder

  1. Any movie with ‘ol cragface Richard Crenna is ok by me.
    It’s clear this film poses one of life’s big questions – “Does Pepsi give the same kick 16 000 pressurized feet down below the ocean’s surface?”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Okay, here’s my dilemma: there were three of these ‘underwater’ movies released in 1989, and I know I saw one of the three…but I can’t remember which it was! I’m guessing it wasn’t this one, because I recognize nothing from what you mention above. Oh good lord, wait, I just checked: one of the three was ‘The Abyss’, so yeah, it was that one. Derf!

    But either way, I like the sound of this one, cheese factor or not. I may have to make this part of my “buy films from the 80s that I’ve never seen but wanted to if I find them for $2 or less on DVD” project, that so far is up to four. And it stars Amanda Pays and Lisa Eilbacher? Count me in! I mean, seriously: if Amanda Pays, I’m more than willing to accept that payment!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I know right 3 deep sea diving sci-fi films at the same time. I wonder if it was just coincidence or there was some copy cat shenanigans going on? The other was Deepstar Six and I did think about doing that one instead of Leviathan but went with the better of the two. The Abyss on the other hand was really very good. I’ve watched that many times. Love Ed Harris.
      The secondhand dvd prices are crazy. The cash store up the road has millions at 5 for £2!! Still there’s nothing really any good and there’s so many you get DVD blindness and spaceout! I must go for another dig in there.
      Every date poor Amanda goes on she ends up paying. She’s all for feminist rights and all that but she just wants a meal payed for her, just once. I did offer her a slap up meal at Burger King but she declined. 😦

      Liked by 1 person

      • Just got back from my local used record/movie/book store…tried to find Leviathan, but no such luck. Their best deal is two for $3, but your deal of five for $2.62 is crazy! But like you said…are five cruddy movies for that price still a good deal? Hmmm…

        And yeah, Amanda declined my offer – a combo meal at Taco Bell – as well. I guess I need to save up and take her to Chili’s! (Or in your case, Chez Fred!)

        Liked by 1 person

        • “my local used record/movie/book store” Sounds like the best shop ever. Who needs food when the 3 vital ingredients of life are just there!

          Well you had me at combo meal at Taco Bell! Hehe I’ve still never been to Taco Bell! We’ve just had one open nearby I must get there soon! As I eat my taco a tear drops down my face. People ask if I’m ok “Is it too hot?”…… I reply through the sobs. “No it’s not too spicy for me, I’m just thinking about how Amanda turned me and Todd down”

          Haha brilliant. Chez Fred. award winning traditional fish and chips. I’ve been there a few times. Stingy on the portions but nice. Haha I’m sure she’d like em! Bet she’ll find something to moan about though.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Beat me to this one. I’ve been eyeing up a revisit to Crenna’s ballooning head for quite some time. And whatever happened to Bronson’s gorgeous daughter Lisa anyway? Yeah I had another of my many crushes on that lovely lass.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Yep, 1989 was the year of the claustrophobic underwater thriller, Abyss, Leviathan, Deepstar Six. This one is the sort of thing I’m sure I would have watched if it had turned up on the telly. But I’ve never seen it, which makes me wonder if this (or Deepstar Six) have ever been on British TV. I can’t remember them ever turning up, which surprises me.

    For cheap DVDs you can’t beat your local charity shop. Dirt cheap, you’re recycling and it’s all for a good cause. There’s one shop near me that knocks them out at 10p each! Obviously I’m snowed under with the things, I always come away with an armful.


  5. We just rewatched this, for some reason, a few months ago. We were discussing the fact that whenever a new film idea emerged–or newER idea with a twist on an old idea–like Alien, the Matrix, Star Wars, we spend the next 20-30 years living through all the clones of those movies because nobody has the imagination (or balls) to think of something new. Probably balls more than anything; it’s the $$ factor, right? Star Wars makes a gazillion dollars, Alien becomes a blockbuster, the Matrix takes over the world. Then we see light-saber-like stuff for 30 years, people running from aliens for 30 years, and people wearing black leather and slo-mo shots of them fighting for 30 years ’cause they think THEY’RE gonna make a gazillion dollars too.
    Oh, well. Leviathan did have its moments!
    But didn’t Ernie Hudson make it all the way to the end, to the surface of the sea, only to get consumed by a shark?!


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