Generally favorable reviews - based on 38 Critics What's this?

User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 108 Ratings

Your Score
0 out of 10
Rate this:
  • 10
  • 9
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Based on true events, Open Water follows an American couple on an island holiday that turns into an ordeal when they are left behind on a scuba expedition.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 38
  2. Negative: 2 out of 38
  1. Worth a dozen "Blair Witch Projects," with much more harrowing psychology and pithy dialogue. It's a bone-chilling plunge into no-holds-barred storytelling.
  2. 88
    The ending -- a more devastating surprise than "The Village" could manage -- caps eighty sweat-job minutes of imaginative, jolting suspense.
  3. Reviewed by: Ronnie Scheib
    A tour-de-force thriller that deftly transforms its low-budget limitations into spectacular assets.
  4. An expertly made suspense thriller based on an actual incident, but on a visceral level it's about as much fun as watching someone pull the wings off a butterfly.
  5. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Open Water is a stunt, one you either buy into or not.
  6. Reviewed by: Dan Jolin
    This isn’t your average against-the-odds survival story.
  7. These dramatic shortfalls make us merely worried that two human beings are in danger, but not two compelling souls. There's your missing ingredient, the human X-factor.

See all 38 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 66
  2. Negative: 36 out of 66
  1. Apr 28, 2012
    I am very disappointed of people's comments about this movie. Some even compare it with JAWS, which makes no sense, because apart from the fact that both have sharks involved in each story, they are totally different movies. Open Water is a thriller while Jaws is a monster movie -not really horror as many affirm- which attempts to create fear...and to me it fails. I definitely like Open Water much more than Jaws. Jaws was perhaps the first blockbuster. The idea was appealing and with the aid of a mechanical shark that we only see once, creates a feeling of danger. Nonetheless, the story itself is weak, and silly. The performances are feeble. Nobody cares about the characters for they are fake. I remember when I was a child I liked Jaws but recently I watched again and almost felt asleep. There were movies great movies that also involved animals (i.e The Birds) so Jaws has no excuse. Open Water, on the other side, is pure realism! I am an Australian, thus, I always hear stories about sharks. In fact, I know people who continually dive along the Great Barrier Reef. None of them believe the JAWS is a smart movie while they agree that Open Water shows some of the dangers that they as professional divers face in real life. The smallest mistake can change their lives.

    Moreover, Open Water, goes beyond the issue of sharks. The presence of sharks is indeed an important element of the movie but the core of this film is the situation itself. It is therefore, not a shark movie! This film explores the feelings of those involved in the story and smartly takes us to their world. We see when, how, and why such feelings develop. We feel for them, understand them, and wish we had the ways to help them. Furthermore, the sporadic jokes that the characters make to each other when the the situation becomes clear, and when the tangible threat is perceived, are not stupid; on the opposite, it adds realism. Many of us, under very stressful, desperate, hopeless, and/or frightening, circumstances tend to joke about them; it is a way to cheer us up and distract from those negative feelings; same there. I also love the scene when Daniel starts screaming, what a touching moment! Great performance. It was a totally believable: a desperate yell! There was frustration, despair, anger, sorrow, anguish, desolation; all those feelings together in that particular scene. Powerful!

    Since the beginning when they are in bed and she is naked, and they are just chatting. It happens to be a very smart scene, for it actually helps to create a feeling of reality and it succeeds; hat is why I don't get why people have issues with that scene. Aren't we naked on a daily basis?. If some didn't understand certain moments or the ending, they may need to watch the movie again and more carefully. If they still don't find the answer,...well, it doesn't mean it is not there, for to many of us the movie is as clear as crystal. Finally, If you haven't watched it, please do it, and take into account what I say, so open your mind to the experience...I don't think you will regret it...and if you do, at least you gave it a go.
  2. Sep 27, 2013
    Esta pelicula me gusto mucho, tuvo mucho suspenso.Tuvo un final sorprendente, que no era de esperarse.Me entreteni mucho viendo esta pelicula; la verdad, esta pelicula vale la pena verla. Expand
  3. Jul 3, 2012
    How did this movie earn a Saturn Award? The acting was awful. Never did the actors manage to convey the feelings that any normal people would feel in this terrifying situation. Expand
  4. Nov 22, 2011
    This never should have been made into a full length movie, it has some credibility and the circumstance they are in makes for an alright plot. It would have done much better as a 10 minute short film and would get the point across much more effectively. Expand
  5. Apr 1, 2011
    This movie was a complete waste of time. I'm surprised that I continued watching until the end. Whenever I watch a horrible movie, I compare it to this. Expand

See all 66 User Reviews