July 28th, 1995

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Still of Dennis Hopper in WaterworldWaterworldJean-Claude Van Damme and Darcy LaPier at event of WaterworldStill of Kevin Costner in WaterworldStill of Kevin Costner and Dennis Hopper in WaterworldStill of Kevin Costner, Jeanne Tripplehorn and Tina Majorino in Waterworld

In a future where the polar ice caps have melted and most of Earth is underwater, a mutated mariner fights starvation and outlaw "smokers," and reluctantly helps a woman and a young girl try to find dry land.

Release Year: 1995

Rating: 5.8/10 (74,022 voted)

Critic's Score: 56/100

Director: Kevin Reynolds

Stars: Kevin Costner, Jeanne Tripplehorn, Dennis Hopper

The polar ice caps have melted, and the earth is covered by water. The remaining people travel the seas, in search of survival. Several different societies exist. The Mariner falls from his customary and solitary existence into having to care for a woman and a young girl while being pursued by the evil forces of the Deacon.

Writers: Peter Rader, David Twohy

Kevin Costner - Mariner
Chaim Girafi - Drifter (as Chaim Jeraffi)
Rick Aviles - Gatesman
R.D. Call - Enforcer
Zitto Kazann - Elder / Survivor
Leonardo Cimino - Elder
Zakes Mokae - Priam
Luke Ka'ili Jr. - Boy
Anthony DeMasters - Boy
Willy Petrovic - Boy
Jack Kehler - Banker
Jeanne Tripplehorn - Helen
Lanny Flaherty - Trader
Robert A. Silverman - Hydroholic
Gerard Murphy - Nord

Taglines: Beyond the horizon lies the secret to a new beginning.

Release Date: 28 July 1995

Filming Locations: Huntington Beach, California, USA

Box Office Details

Budget: $175,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend: $21,171,780 (USA) (30 July 1995)

Gross: $264,218,220 (Worldwide)

Technical Specs

Runtime:  | USA: (director's cut)

Did You Know?

If the icecaps melted, the oceans would only rise a few hundred feet; not enough to flood civilization into a floating oblivion.

Continuity: Deacon is talking to Enola and asks her if she wants a cigarette and says she is not too young to start. He lights his cigarette and it appears he has smoked half of it but when camera shots change it's bigger again.

Mariner: What are the markings on her back?
Helen: Some say it's the way to dry land.
Mariner: Dry land is a myth.
Helen: No, you said it yourself, that you've seen it.
Mariner: You're a fool to believe in something you've never seen.
Helen: But the things on your boat...!
Mariner: The things on my boat, what?
Helen: There are things on your boat that no one has ever seen. These shells, the music box and the reflecting glass. Well, if not from dry land, then where? Where?
Mariner: You wanna see dry land? You really wanna see it? I'll take you there.

User Review

Why do people hate this film?

Rating: 10/10

I honestly don't understand what all the fuss is about. Why do people hate Waterworld? Why was it instantly disregarded before it was even released? When you really think about it, how much different IS Waterworld from the more recent Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest? They are quite similar if you think about it. Waterworld also cost $75 million less than DMC. But because it has Johnny Depp in mascara the whole world loves it! Hypocrisy! With a lot of behind the scenes trouble (Reynolds walked off the film and Costner had to finish the final third of filming himself) and negative pre-release buzz, everyone expected Waterworld to fail. Boasting a budget of £175 million (the most expensive ever until Titanic 2 years later) it was sure to be a flop, especially with the snooty public and critics blasting it before its release. Then, the unthinkable happened.

Upon release, Waterworld actually managed to prove critic expectation wrong and be a good movie, receiving good (albeit ignored) reviews and finally earning a grand total of $255 million at the Box Office. This is before video, laserdisc, TV, DVD, HD-DVD and Blu Ray sales as well as all of the merchandise. Does sound like a flop to you? The plot is far-fetched. Yes, but so are the POTC plots involving fish-men, giant squids and Orlando Bloom as anything remotely masculine. But you accepted that quite easily. So just, for a minute, believe that if the polar ice caps DID melt that the world WOULD be covered in water. Set hundreds of years after this particular cataclysm, Waterworld follows the journey of The Mariner (Kevin Costner, who is only referred to a few times but never actually named), a man who is one step beyond human as he has the ability to breathe underwater and has webbed feet.

Early on in the movie, The Mariner comes across an Atoll, a floating small town complete with its own hill...er Waterbillies. When the Atoll is seized by crazed madman baddie boss Dennis Hopper as The Duke of the Deez (as in Exxon Valdeez), The Mariner escapes with Enola, a little girl who may hold the secret of Dryland and her guardian Helen (the totally gorgeous Jeanne Tripplehorn). Not happy with anyone leaving the party The Duke sends his army of filthy smokers to catch The Mariner and discover Dryland for himself.

Waterworld has a lot going for it. It's everything an action/sci-fi movie should be. There is so much escapism in the stunning seascapes and tropical feel. James Newton Howard's exotic score (replacing a rejected score by Mark Isham) is breathtaking and I seriously recommend you hunt down the soundtrack CD. The action is almost entirely special effects and stunt-work and it's brilliantly done. The editing is also quite impressive as is the amazing sound design. Waterworld is far superior to many, more expensive action films but still carries this burden of negative, unfair public opinion.

I have only ever seen the 136-minute cut of Waterworld that was released into cinemas and subsequent VHS etc. But a Director's Cut of 176 minutes has been shown on TV in America several times. This version apparently restores several scenes that tie up loose ends and answers a lot of questions about how the this particular watery future works as well as revealing that Dryland is actually Mount Everest. Other than TV airings, this version has never made available to the public. Which is quite annoying as there is a huge fanbase for it.

Don't have prejudices against this movie. Think different and see for yourself how cool it is.

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