The Abyss

The Abyss (1989)

33 mistakes

Continuity mistake: Early in the film Bud throws his wedding ring down the latrine and then retrieves it with his right hand so it is covered with the blue disinfectant. In a (much) later scene, Bud has a blue right hand, despite not having had one in the intervening period.

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The Abyss mistake picture

Visible crew/equipment: During Bud and Coffey's fight in the lab, we see a lightbulb swinging from side to side between the two men. If you look closely, you can see a hand (belonging to a third person) pushing the lightbulb. The only people in the room are Bud and Coffey.

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Visible crew/equipment: Watch the special edition version of the movie. During the scene when the crane is falling down on top of the sub, the camera is following people around the passages. When it comes to the end of a hall, and a hatch is shut in our face, we can see the shadow of the camera equipment in the door.

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Continuity mistake: When Bud is giving his wife CPR and starts to slap and yell at her you see her blink and swallow before they have any life readings. You also catch her closing her mouth as if to wet it when he bends over her body.

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Factual error: When Lindsay is being revived after Bud towed her back to Deepcore, I understand why the CPR being done isn't exactly correct(due to the fact the actress isn't really dead) but the filmmaker neglected to notice that when the crew proceeds to shock Lindsay, she is wet and on a metal floor. Not only would she be shocked, the entire crew around her would be shocked as well.

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dablues7

Continuity mistake: When Lindsay is pulled from the pool after she drowns her wet hair is covering her face. In the next shot she is laying on the floor and Bud is smoothing her hair back to give her CPR. The shot changes again and her hair is back covering her face like it was when they pulled her from the water.

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Tina Gilliam

Continuity mistake: When Bud sneaks on Coffey in the moon pool, they are seen fighting. During this Bud shirt gets wet and rides up his back. In some shots it goes down again, but then goes right back up.

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Continuity mistake: When Bud leaves Jammer behind in the sub, he gives him a strand of rope to keep the two connected. At first Bud keeps the bundle of rope and hands Jammer the loose end, however in later scenes it's shown that Jammer holds the bundle of rope and Bud holds the loose end; as Jammer is feeding him line.

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RJR99SS

Continuity mistake: When Linds says "I got it. It's headed straight for us," Bud looks out the front window. Watch the umbilical because it doesn't start to move until a split second after the camera is in full frame.

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Visible crew/equipment: During the scene where Bud and Lindsey are arguing about who will wear the scuba equipment back to the rig from their downed mini sub, a hand with a cloth wipes water off the camera. It's during the line when the camera is facing Bud and he says "Don't argue with me goddammit, just put it on." This is visible in the 4:3 version for TV, as well as the widescreen version on DVD.

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AidanN

Continuity mistake: When Jammer is alone in the derelict sub and the alien appears, all the electrical devices shut down, as they do in the whole movie. But in the close up shots from the side of Jammer, you can see the light at the top of his helmet is still on.

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Other mistake: During the submarine interior scene, there are several dead seamen shown floating about. One of them is pretty close to the camera and floating with his eyes open. He blinks before the shot ends.

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Nicki

Character mistake: When they're reviving Lindsey, Bud screams fight and slaps her. watch as she closes her eyes on the second slap while she is supposed to be dead.

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korporal kool

Continuity mistake: In the under sea duel in the mini subs Coffee smashes the tape player with his elbow, in the next scene, as seen from the outside looking into his sub, you can see it's still intact.

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Other mistake: When the water tentacle enters the rig, in one shot in the 4:3 version of the film on video you can see that the tentacle is a superimposed special effect because of the dead straight line where it is supposed to have come out of the water.

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Audio problem: When the crew are running around the passages, a guy with a beard yells something at Bud, and then uses a fire hydrant to put out a small fire. Funny, it doesn't make a noise.

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Plot hole: Granted, Coffee is suffering from "high-pressure nervous syndrome," but if you're a Navy SEAL, wouldn't you notice whether or not your pistol has a magazine in it? Monk pulls the clip out of his jacket and starts knocking rounds out of it for the rig crew's benefit; the same dramatic effect could have been achieved with a handful of cartridges he could let slip through his fingers. You could argue that Monk didn't have enough time to unload the gun and replace the magazine, but in that case, I think the scene where Monk briefly had the gun should have been a bit longer. (Even had the empty magazine been IN the gun, Coffee still might notice the difference in weight, but that would be easier to suspend your disbelief for.)

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rbryant73

Continuity mistake: When Bud and Lindsay are in the sub after the big chase, water leaks in and Bud searches for something to fix it. He delivers some dialogue while opening (I believe) a first aid kit. The camera angle switches to Lindsay as she says something, and Bud can be seen in the background opening the kit once again.

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Continuity mistake: Bud swims to the moon pool and tries to sneak up on Coffey. Coffey aims a gun at Bud. Bud's right eye is swollen. In the next scene its not, and the following scene it is.

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Revealing mistake: After the water tentacle sequence, Coffee brings Schoenick back to their bunks to get the submachine gun, so they can take over the rig. The bag containing the gun is stashed behind some pipes up by the ceiling. Watch when he reaches behind the pipes to grab the bag--the pipes move at least six inches.

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rbryant73

Continuity mistake: When the SEALS take over, they lock up the crew. After closing the door on Ed Harris and the shouting Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, one of the SEALS hangs a hat over the spyhole. The next time we see the door, the spyhole isn't covered.

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Plot hole: Monk steals the magazine from Coffey's SIG. However, I don't see how he could have jacked the slide to eject the round in the chamber without being noticed. Someone as paranoid as Coffey was at this point would not have left the chamber empty. (Just FYI, when you load an automatic pistol with a magazine, you have to pull back and release the slide to load the first bullet in the barrel.)

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Grumpy Scot

Other mistake: When Ed Harris is dropping down the Abyss there are a couple of time that bubbles come out of his mouth or can be seen in his nostrils, even though he is supposed to have been breathing liquid for quite some time.

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Revealing mistake: When he's on his way to send the nuke down the abyss, Coffee leaves the other SEALs to guard the rig's crew in the kitchen. He goes through a door, locks it and secures it with his belt, and then bangs on it to test its security. It moves more than a metal door in a metal housing would.

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rbryant73

Plot hole: Water pressure seems to be very picky in this film. It crushes Little Geek after passing 17,000 feet but somehow manages to leave Big Geek intact. Also if Big Geek could fall that amount of distance before imploding then why did Flatbed implode after only falling a few feet?

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Continuity mistake: When Ed Harris gets used to the Liquid Breathing Suit you can see air still in his helmet after he goes in the water. That shouldn't be! The purpose of the suit is to get any remaining air out for it to work.

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Continuity mistake: When Lindsay turns to see the UFO, she has cables running around her, but in the next shot, no cables.

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kh1616

Plot hole: Why wasn't the umbilical to the "Explorer" unhooked from the rig after the rig was set down? Everyone knew things were going to get rough with the hurricane coming, so the umbilical should have been taken care of before the hurricane became a factor.

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Character mistake: When Bud is doing mouth-to-mouth on Lindsay, he's not pinching her nose closed, so all the air he's breathing in is going straight out her nose.

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kh1616

Plot hole: Coffey uses the submersible "Big Geek" to carry the armed nuclear bomb to the NTIs. If Coffey was that desperate to blow up the aliens, he could have much more easily set the timer for 30 minutes, driven one of the submersibles far out over the abyss past the drop-off, and simply dropped the bomb down and let it sink under it's own weight.

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Watcher1

Visible crew/equipment: The ship is moving underwater and explosions are going off left and right. The main female character says she is going to check the battery room. As she goes, the camera is in front of her, and its shadow, including a microphone antenna are on her.

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manthabeat

Continuity mistake: When the crane breaks off and falls into the water, it JUST misses the rig by a few feet (very visible when they're looking out of the window). Then the crane falls off of the edge and starts to pull the rig. The rig is pulled much farther than the previously shown distance to the edge.

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Minerva

Factual error: When disarming the nuke Bud is trying to figure out which one of the two wires to cut. With only two wires running between two separated modules (in the film, one part is unscrewed from the other) any current flowing through one wire must be returned through the other in order to conserved electric charge. Cutting either wire, in this case, will result in breaking the circuit. There is no way for either side of the circuit to detect which wire(s) were cut.

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Quotes

Bud Brigman: The guy is on his own, he's cut off from his chain of command, he's showing signs of pressure-induced psychosis, and he has a nuclear weapon. So as a personal favour to me, could you put your tongue in neutral for a while?!

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Trivia

The dead sailor harbouring a live crab, spooking Jammer out of his wits in the sunk submarine, is director James Cameron's younger brother Mike. The scene had to be shot several times to get it right, forcing Mike to hold the live crabs in his mouth, until the cry for "action", before releasing them. At one point he had to crush one with his teeth, as it gave him quite a bit of grief. Brotherly love immortalized.

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