Taglines: How long can you hold your breath?
Miss Martin, the CEO of Tri-Oceanic Corp., hires geologist Steven Beck to supervise an undersea mining operation for six months. The crew consists of members Dr. Glen ‘Doc’ Thompson, Elizabeth ‘Willie’ Williams, Buzz ‘Sixpack’ Parrish, Justin Jones, Tony ‘DeJesus’ Rodero, Bridget Bowman and G.P. Cobb.
While working outside their deep sea station in a pressure suit, Sixpack discovers a Soviet shipwreck, Leviathan. The crew salvage a safe from Leviathan, finding records detailing the deaths of several crew members as well as a video log from the captain. Sixpack also finds a flask of vodka which he shares with Bowman. Doc and Beck review the captain’s video, which describes puzzling medical problems amongst his crew. They also discover that Leviathan was scuttled.
The following morning, Sixpack feels sick and Doc discovers lesions along his back. He dies a few hours later, but Doc and Beck keep it quiet to avoid a panic. Doc checks the crew to confirm no one else is sick, but does not have the chance to examine Bowman. While Beck and Doc confer with Martin on the surface, Bowman begins feeling ill. She finds Sixpack’s corpse, which is mutating and growing. When Bowman’s hair starts falling out, she realizes the same thing is happening to her. Beck and Doc request emergency evacuation, but Martin reports a severe storm on the surface that will delay evacuation for 12 hours.
Doc finds that Bowman killed herself. Her body is taken to sickbay, where it merges with Sixpack’s. When the crew discovers the mutating bodies, they decide to dump both of them in the ocean. As they are about to “flush” the cadavers, the body bag begins squirming. Believing someone inside may be alive, the crew opens it. The creature inside claws Cobb before they eject it. They realize that Leviathan was experimenting on its unwitting crew with mutagens. The mutagen was mixed with the vodka that the crew, and later Sixpack and Bowman, drank. The ship was scuttled when the experiment escaped control.
Leviathan is a 1989 Italian-American science fiction horror film directed by George P. Cosmatos and written by David Webb Peoples and Jeb Stuart. It stars Peter Weller, Richard Crenna, Ernie Hudson, and Daniel Stern as the crew of an underwater geological facility stalked and killed by a hideous mutant creature. Its creature effects were designed by Academy Award-winning special effects artist Stan Winston.
The film was released around the same time as other, similarly-themed ‘underwater’ science fiction and horror films including The Abyss and DeepStar Six, and received negative reviews from critics, citing numerous similarities to films such as Alien and The Thing.
Directed by: George P. Cosmatos
Starring: Peter Weller, Richard Crenna, Amanda Pays, Daniel Stern, Ernie Hudson, Michael Carmine, Lisa Eilbacher, Hector Elizondo, Meg Foster, Eugene Lipinski
Screenplay by: David Peoples, Jeb Stuart
Production Design by: Ron Cobb
Cinematography by: Alex Thomson
Film Editing by: John F. Burnett, Roberto Silvi
Costume Design by: April Ferry
Set Decoration by: Bruno Cesari, Robert Gould
Art Direction by: Pier Luigi Basile, Franco Ceraolo, David F. Klassen, William Ladd Skinner
Music by: Jerry Goldsmith
Distributed by: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release Date: March 17, 1989