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Date TimeAugust 09, 2019
VoiceThe director’s underwater folly might have flopped on release in 1989 but in the years since, various new cuts have granted it many more lives
The Abyss at 30: why James Camerons sci-fi epic is really about love
James Cameron’s The Abyss was released in theaters on 9 August 1989. Exactly three months later, the Berlin Wall was demolished, putting a symbolic end to the Soviet bloc and the decades-long tensions that went along with it. It’s easy to forgot how closely these two events coincided, perhaps because Cameron’s films have always seemed directed toward the future, deploying technologies that wouldn’t take hold in the industry for years later. But The Abyss is as old to us now as Alfred Hitchcock’s North By Northwest or Billy Wilder’s Some Like It Hot was to audiences in 1989, and it is the product of a generation that grew up fearing nuclear annihilation. Expected it, even.
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