There are several occasions when this rousing Australian thriller from 1987 should have ended with a well-placed shot from a speargun or a stronger knot of rope, but you don't think about these small details when you're being scared out of your wits. In a role that catapulted her to international stardom, Nicole Kidman plays a young wife who has joined her husband (Sam Neill) on a yachting trip to recover from the tragic death of their son. Far out to sea, they encounter a sinking ship with one survivor (Billy Zane, 10 years before Titanic) but inviting him aboard... turns out to be a very bad mistake. While Neill attempts to salvage the sinking boat, Kidman is fighting for her life against the psychotic Zane--a villain so creepy that you eagerly look forward to his demise. By the time that moment arrives director Phillip Noyce has resorted to a typical slasher-movie climax (proving that no boat should be without a flare gun) but until then Dead Calm is a nail-biting thriller that's guaranteed to keep you in a state of nail-biting suspense. --Jeff Shannon [show more]
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Tense psychological thriller in which John Ingram (Sam Neill) and his wife Rae (Nicole Kidman), alone on a sailing trip, rescue a young man (Billy Zane) from his disabled ship. He claims to be the sole survivor of a food poisoning attack, but when Ingram boards the ship he discovers that something far more sinister has been going on, and that his young wife is in considerable danger.