'The Poseidon Adventure' - A Movie Review
The Poseidon Adventure is a stellar film that has made a mark on film history.
Better hold on! You’re in for a wild ride this New Year’s Eve. Let’s hope everything doesn’t turn upside-down!
Irwin Allen set audiences on the edge of their seats when The Poseidon Adventure was first released to the big screen in 1972. Based on the novel by Paul Gallico, Just after midnight on New Year’s Eve, a rogue wave capsizes the Poseidon. A small group travels through the overturned ship to survive in the unknown.
I remember the first time I watched The Poseidon Adventure when I was a kid. Since then I have developed a major love for disaster movies. The Poseidon Adventure is the essence of what every disaster film should acquire. A nail-biting story, a terrific cast of actors, and an essence of terror that is believable.
A boatload (No pun intended) of incredible actors filled the roles of the survivors. Gene Hackman, Ernest Borgnine, Red Buttons, Carol Lynley, Roddy McDowell, Stella Stevens, Shelley Winters, Jack Albertson, Pamela Sue Martin, and Eric Shea put in their incredible efforts and acting abilities to honest portrayals. Many have passed since the release of this movie but will forever leave a legacy.
One of my favorite parts about this movie is the characterization. Unlike disaster movies now, The Poseidon Adventure is an equal mixture of special effects and well-written characterization. There is not just one subplot. Hackman fights to get everyone to safety, as Borgnine and Stevens bicker, followed by Albertson and Winters lamenting in tear-jerking talks about their survival.
The film is quick to introduce the characters. Instead of meaningless exposition certain information about characters is subtle. For example the direction in Borgnine and Stevens scene where they’re arguing about going to the New Year’s Eve party, as they question fears and confronting whether the past matters, is a bold scene filled with subtle details and splendid expressions.
Red Button's performance as the meek James Martin is one of my favorites. While at first glance he doesn’t look like a man with a lot of courage he keeps everyone together, even taking action. I enjoyed his subplot with the late Carol Lynley. It was also interesting to learn that the two actors did not get along offscreen.
At times there is a little too much yelling, especially from Borgnine’s character. Honestly, it still feels very genuine if a situation like this were to ever happen to a group of strangers.
The special effects are impressive. It’s startling to watch the ship dangerously capsize as all the passengers fall from dangerous heights. Allen and his crew did a terrific job making sure that nobody was injured. The sets are out of this world, especially when you have to look at it upside down.
That sweat you see on the actor's faces is real. They all climbed ladders, swam through the water, and balanced on uneven scaffolds, as if they were the ones making the journey to survival. From start to finish this movie pulls you in.
Costumes are outstanding. Long gowns, tuxes, and even beautiful accessories. The clothing has their own battles the more tattered they get on the endless journey. It just goes to show that you have to make a sacrifice when it comes to your favorite attire.
The soundtrack is incredible sending eerie goosebumps up your spine. The late Carol Lynley’s rendition of "The Morning After" is a beautiful song.
The Poseidon Adventure is a stellar film that has made a mark on film history. If you have not seen this movie, I recommend that you do, especially around New Year’s. Be warned that it is emotional and suspenseful.