directed by Chris Kentis
USA 2003


Based on the true story of a couple on vacation who decide to go on a paid scuba diving excursion. The boat guide miscounts the head total and they are left stranded in jellyfish and shark infested waters. Both characters go through the gamut of emotions in eventual acceptance of their fate - disbelief, fear, anger and resignation.


It is quite exhilarating to see independent films like this that do not overly-pander to the audiences most base desires. Frankly, I find it quite unusual in the American market. Nothing about "Open Water" is exceptional - not the narrative, the performances, nor the cinematography, but it all pulls itself together wonderfully in the end. I suspect that many seasoned film viewers can see through the manipulations quite easily, but regardless they are a welcome expression from where a film of this nature could find itself going for the sake of money. I honestly had a good time watching this film, it held no pretension for obviousness and its minimal plot was not easy to deduce. Yes, I think I recommend it - out of     

Gary W. Tooze


Theatrical Release: October 26th, 2003 - Hamptons International Film Festival

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DVD Review: Lions Gate Home Entertainment - Region 1- NTSC

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Distribution Lions Gate Home Entertainment - Region 1- NTSC
Runtime 1:19:36
Video 1.85:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 7.94 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s 

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.


Audio English, Dolby Digital 5.1 EX, DTS 6.1, DD Surround
Subtitles English, Spanish, None

Release Information:
Studio: Lions Gate Home Entertainment

Aspect Ratio:
Original aspect Ratio 1.85:1

Edition Details:

• Trailer
• Deleted Scenes
• Featurette - 'The Indie Essentials'
• Featurette - 'Calm Before the Storm'
• Bonus 'on-location' footage

DVD Release Date: December 28th, 2004

Keep Case
Chapters: 20




The image on this DVD is quite poor. The film was shot on digital and then transferred over to film and this becomes quite obvious during viewing - certain close-ups have that unfiltered realistic look, but far away pans and vistas look hazy and cheap. Colors looked vibrant, bordering on saturation, but movement was so clouded at times it almost gave me a headache. I realize this was an indie film but I don't think the picture should look this amateurish. I have seen other digital to film to DVD picture quality films look far more impressive. I blame Lions Gate for the weak transfer as evidence indicates it looked much better in the theaters. On a positive note - The audio is some of the best I can ever remember hearing, especially the DTS track which intensified the theater experience that seems absent in the image. There are some extras worthy of watching and the subtitles are a white font and acceptable. Overall - a small recommendation if only for the film itself and the audio. out of  

Gary W. Tooze


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Distribution Lions Gate Home Entertainment - Region 1- NTSC


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Gary Tooze