Have a Cold One


ds6 dvd

Greg Evigan as McBride
Nancy Everhard as Joyce Collins
Miguel Ferrer as Snyder
Matt McCoy as Richardson
Nia Peeples as Scarpelli
Marius Weyers as Dr. Van Gelder
Taurean Blacque as Captain Laidlaw
Elya Baskin as Burciaga
Thom Bray as Johnny Hodges

"My father told me 'stay at home and help me out with the farm, son.' Uh-uh. Not me. I had to join the Navy and see the fuckin' world." – Captain Laidlaw

"At least Snyder will get his name in the Guinness Book of World Records. I mean causing two nuclear explosions in one day has to be some sort of record!" – Richardson


Movies come in trends. Remember when Clint Eastwood starred in "Unforgiven"? It was a good movie and made a lot of box office bucks even when westerns weren't being made. All of a sudden though a few cheaper, not-as-good westerns were hitting the market. ("Bad Girls", for one…and yeah, it was bad alright). The same thing happened in 1989 when The Abyss was making money. A few cheaper, cheesy knock offs came out to capitalize on the public interest in undersea adventure/horror flicks. This was one of them.

The US Navy has an undersea base named Deep Star Six (duh), and their mission is to put a missile sled in place under the sea as a launch pad for nuclear weapons. Why? I don't know…..sure, this movie was made in 1989 when there was still a Soviet Union, but that seems kind of stupid. Don't we already have submarines that can launch nukes? And they're mobile.

Anyway, Dr. Van Gelder is under a deadline to get the missiles in place, or the Navy will pull the plug on the funding. Yeah, I know, that seems kind of stupid too. They have a functioning undersea base! That would seem like a valuable asset to have for SCIENCE. But I guess they just want to blow things up. That's exactly what Van Gelder does when Collins, Hodges and Burciaga tell him they've discovered a cavern under the missile site. With no time to find a new site Van Gelder decides they should just use explosives to collapse the cavern. But when they do so they free a prehistoric lobster-crab-monster that attacks the base toot-sweet.

Having caused the deaths directly and indirectly of four crew members (including the commander, Captain Laidlaw) the creature quite naturally has rattled the surviving crew. Doctor Norris takes charge and orders an immediate evacuation. The monster wrecked the machinery that refreshes the air supply so they have no choice. Snyder, the resident jackass and screw-up is ordered to secure the missiles before they leave. Now in his defense Snyder even says "Why? It's not like anyone can swim down here and get them!", but he does what he's told and by does what he is told means he decides the best way to secure the nuclear missiles is to detonate them. The resulting explosion and shock/pressure wave damages the base EVEN more, and now its reactor is going to go critical. But the remaining crew, including the main hero, McBride, don't have time to change their underwear. The decompression chamber has been broken too, and if they can't decompress they can't return to the surface without killing themselves.

But some of the repairs have to be done OUTSIDE of the base. Richardson dons a diving suit and goes out to fix it and is promptly attacked by the monster. He almost makes it back inside alive, but the monster gets in the base too....after snacking on Richardson from the lower chest down.

You can figure out the rest from there, easily. One by one the others bite the dust either by monster or Snyder. (Snyder accidentally kills Van Gelder while fighting off the monster, which is hilarious. Really, look at the expression on Miguel Ferrer's face when he kills Van Gelder. I couldn't stop laughing) You could literally swap the end of Leviathan with this movie. They're both the same. The hero, McBride and the hot chick, Collins make it out alive, the monster attacks one more time and the hero kills it by blowing it up. This isn't a great flick by any means, but if you're not against watching cheesy movies with an undersea theme, it's serviceable. But truth be told, it wouldn't be as entertaining without Snyder. This movie needed a bit more Snyder.


1.) So is this an official US Navy installation? If so don't they say anything about McBride and his girlfriend, Collins, bunking together? And by bunking I mean…Aw, you know what I mean….speaking of Navy regulations….I'm not all up on them ( I was US Army, hooah) are you allowed to have beards? Because that's a no-no in the other branches unless you have a medical reason not allowing you to shave.
1.2) Apparently almost everyone is getting some on this base, if Scarpelli's shower scene with Richardson has anything to do with it. Dang. I shoulda joined the Navy.

2.) Five minutes into the movie and they already set Snyder up to be an asshole by having him grouse that his relief is 20 minutes late. I guess that makes him look like an impatient jerk, but anyone who has ever served in the military will tell ya 20 minutes late can get your head ripped off. Ever pull 24 hour duty and have your relief be any more than 60 seconds late? Trust me, when it happened to me I was ready to stab murder people with a pencil.
Gawd….Snyder is a real whiny little beeyotch. This actually makes me chuckle because I've had to work with and be in charge of whiny beeyotches like him. You pretty much want to friggin' choke them when they just won't stop bitchin' about things that no one within earshot has any control over.
Okay, this cannot be the Navy. While they don't address anyone by rank except for Captain Laidlaw, when Collins calls Snyder saying she needs to talk to the captain NOW he says "the captain's busy and so am I" to blow her off. That kinda sh** will get you in trouble in general, but Collins most likely outranks him.
If you're like me you'll wonder why any of the remaining crew thinks giving Snyder a weapon is a good idea after the sea monster gets into the base. So far in the movie this guy has not only f****d up, he's f****d up monumentally. He's like Gilligan on steroids.

3.) Yep. The Captain is gonna die. As soon as he shows Scarpelli the crayon drawing his young son sent to him and says he can't wait to see his family again he was doomed. If you're not the main hero YOU NEVER DO THAT IF YOU WANT TO LIVE.
Consequently, when Norris talks about wanting Collins to visit her on her farm in New Hampshire she might as well have fed herself to the monster.

4.) Wait…Collins is the first woman to graduate the Navy SEALS program? This movie was made before GI JANE, too. So why ain't she out somewhere kickin' asses in instead of doing this crap?

5.) The monster (which they have not shown us at all, not even a fin at this point) has knocked over the teeny sea base called Sea Track. It's resting precariously on the edge of the chasm they opened while trying to collapse the cavern in the sea floor and could fall in at any second. McBride and Captain Laidlaw go to rescue Collins and Burciaga. Burciaga is badly injured and the rescuers find Collins with him. What do they do? They decide the need a rope to get him out of the cramped space he and Collins are in when it would be faster to just CARRY him out. To make it worse, once they get a rope and get to him Collins says "He's gone". Huh? If he was dead why didn't you SAY THAT so they didn't waste time trying to make a winch or something with the rope?

6.) In a heroic last second effort to get McBride and Collins to leave him when he's pinned ad dying, Laidlaw hits a button labeled "flood" and the Sea Track base begins to fill with seawater. The idea of course is to force them to leave him and save themselves. (He even says this before…this should be in the Familiar Tropes section) But there's a button labeled "PURGE" right next to the "FLOOD" button. Why didn't they just push that?
Why would you put a button that can flood an undersea base with one push on an undersea base? Isn't that like having a big red button saying "Open all airlocks to the vacuum of space" in a spaceship?

7.) With no other options left to escape the upcoming nuclear detonation AND the giant Lobster-Monster in the base, McBride tells Collins and Norris he'll swim to the other side of the flooded facility and get the mini-sub. Hey, he's the movie's hero, so the monster won't kill him. But I wonder why Collins ain't doing this. She's "the first woman to graduate from the Navy SEALS".

8.) You know what would have been handy in that mini-sub? A radio. You know, so McBride and Collins could have sent out a distress signal to the Navy as they escaped the base and the monster.

9.) By the way, why isn't the Navy all over the place at the end? They didn't notice that the entire payload of nuclear missiles was detonated and the bases reactor had exploded?


♦ So to prove he's one of the dumbest chumps on the planet, Snyder detonates all of the nuclear missiles while "securing" them before the crew can evacuate DS6. You know who the 2nd dumbest chump on the planet is? The guy that designed a system that can allow ONE guy pushing a few buttons to detonate a nuclear missile, let alone ALL of them.

♦ Snyder completely flips out after being confronted with the monster (and accidentally killing Van Gelder). Norris sedates him and tries to calm him down while McBride and Collins prep the escape module. Then Norris says "I've got to pack some food for the trip" and leaves him alone. Food for the trip? How long is this freakin' trip going to take? The place is going to blow up in a few hours and there's a monster in the base. This ain't no time for sandwiches!

♦ …and what universe does she live in where leaving Snyder alone is a good idea considering his track record and condition right now?


I'm not sure if The Black Guy Always Dies First trope fits here. Laidlaw died right after Burciaga. Of course as I said earlier, talking about his family sealed his fate anyway.


I watched this right after watching the other very similar "undersea base-with-monsters" movie, Leviathan. You know what? I enjoyed this more than I enjoyed Leviathan. It's not high cinema, but it was fun to watch. I have to give credit to Miguel Ferrer's acting as Snyder. He was such a total idiot you almost couldn't wait to see how he was going to screw up next. This movie deserves a six pack...not because it was a great movie (it was savaged by critics) but because I laughed my ass off at Snyder.

six pack

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