Terror Beneath the Sea
Reviewed by John Weber
Rating: 7 Beans
cary monsters! Exciting hand-to-hand combat! Amazing special effects! Captivating performances!
None of these exist in "Terror Beneath the Sea" (unless your idea of terror is staying underwater until your hands turn horribly pruny and wrinkled)...sooooooo, what do you have?
Well, you have Sonny Chiba (who went on to The Street Fighter and Street Fighter II, both, relatively speaking, leaps and bounds above this one) and Peggy Neal as reporters in Japan (this is a Japanese movie, although one with a lot of American actors. None familiar to anyone except their immediate families). They go skin-diving and run into some sort of creature. They surface and tell the U.S. Navy what they saw. Why not go to the Japanese Navy - they're in Japan! Who knows? Anyway, no one believes them. They return to the spot, meeting up with a few more of these "monsters", who take them captive. How frightening are these things? Wouldja believe they make Godzilla seem realistic? Enough said.
Sonny and Peggy come to inside a secret undersea base (is there any other kind) that vaguely resembles EPCOT. We meet a mad scientist who is developing a race of "water cyborgs" to inhabit his lil' undersea kingdom. How do we know he's mad? That telltale mad scientist chortle. Plus he never takes his sunglasses off. The "water cyborgs" are controlled by a dial, turned to commands like "work" and "fight" (and, for all I know, "fetch"). In scenes that go on, oh, I don't know, FOREVER, we're shown how humans become "water cyborgs", which seems to involve being soaked in gobs of Palmolive dishwashing liquid, baked and then infected with some sort of all-over athlete's foot. Yeesh.
There's something for every bad-movie fan in "Terror Beneath the Sea". My favorites: a glimpse of the brain-o-meter, and the U.S. Navy (toy) sub going "full reverse" as if it were a Ford station wagon with an automatic transmission backing out of a parking space at Sears. Matter of fact, that's probably where the costumes and props came from - Sears.
Submerge yourself in "Terror Beneath the Sea", which is also known by six or seven other titles. It beats watching your goldfish swim around their bowl.
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