DARK WATERS

 

Director: Philip J Roth


Released: 2003
Starring: Lorenzo Lamas, Simmone MacKinnon, Jeffrey Gorman

Synopsis: When a bunch of great whites eat a drilling platform a wealthy industrialist recruits a couple of morons who happen to own a submarine to go find out what happened. Along the way, they discover that the wealthy industrialist was bizarrely involved in a secret US Navy program to control sharks as weapons systems.

Act One: The Prologue

Location: Oil Transfer Station #3, in the Gulf Of Mexico
Underwater: Two chaps are busy welding something or other whilst on the sea bed.

Diver 1: What do you think?
Diver 2: I think if he wants us to OT, we get it back on vacations.
Diver 1: I'm talkin' about the valve, somethin' hit it and broke the seal.

Diver 1 removes a bent and buckled wheel from a pipe.

Diver 1: What the hell could do this?

Inside the transfer station: Fat smoking mechanic (Johnson) is watching porn on the security monitor.
Diver 1: Johnson, do you hear me?
Johnson: Sure.
Diver 1: We gotta busted valve on the five line, shut it down .
Johnson: Yeah. You're supposed to be fixin' it.
Diver 1: I gotta replace the whole valve. And turn on the goddamn camera whilst we're out here.
Johnson: OK, I'll shut it down.

We're four minutes into the film, and already there are problems. Why does this oil transfer station have a control room located 3,800 feet below the surface? Water pressure at this depth is 115 atmospheres, which is staggering. Whilst it is possible to have a pressurised environment at this depth, the divers are shown wearing what amount to wet suits, rather than a JIM style hardsuit that would be required to work outside at one atmosphere, so we must assume that the control room is in equilibrium with the water pressure. Decompression time for a 3,800 foot dive is, well, it is so high that dive tables cannot accommodate them, but well in excess of a month. Coming back on the divers suits, the world record for a scuba dive is 1,083 feet, about a quarter of what is shown here. Hard suits usually fail implosively at around 1,000 feet, and so it is absolutely impossible, with real technology, for the divers to survive being out there at all. I'd have to also add that the only reason for having a camera switched on would appear to be to gather pictures of the sharks when they finally arrive, so the guy using the equipment to watch porn, well, why the fuck not?

Johnson: OK guys, she's shut down.
Diver 2: Did you see that?
Diver 1: See what?
Diver 2: The jellyfish, they're spooked.

Jellyfish are amongst the simplest creatures in the known universe. They have no brains, they have no emotions, they cannot be spooked any more than they can be cheerful. We can, perhaps, say that Diver 2 is perhaps a complete idiot, however, so this may not be an error. One would have to wonder though exactly how many idiots oil companies employ to perform extremely high risk jobs requiring a wealth of technical expertise. My guess would be not many, but I may be wrong.

A siren blares past the whimpers and moans of the porn on the TV.

Johnson: Come on.

A monitor shows five red blobs on 'sonar'.


Johnson: Hey, Hank, got any info on the Navy doin' maneuvers here?
Diver 1 (Hank): No. Why?
Johnson: We have five mini-subs circlin'. If they weren't traveling in formation I'd say they were great whites, or, maybe sperm whales.

Johnson takes a big drag on a cigarette.

Diver 1 (Hank): Great whites?
Diver 2: Relax, it's probably the Navy testing deep water remotes.
Johnson: Guys, I dunno what the hell they are but they're comin' right at ya.

Right, sonar tends to work on quite specific frequencies - fish finding sonar, for example, tends not to pick up submarines. Submarine finding sonar tends not to pick up fish, so really, no matter what sonar we're seeing here the question of whether or not the blobs are animals or submarines ought to be immediately and blatantly obvious.
That great whites are often found in family pods was well known before this film was made. That sharks circle objects they are unsure of is also well documented. We can, perhaps, simply assume that Johnson is sufficiently moronic that he is not aware of this. What seems far more stretched is the idea that the oil company think it is perfectly OK to smoke a cigarette whilst aboard what must be an astonishingly expensive facility that's full of high pressure oxygen and electronics.
A great white is a large fish, they can be around 20 feet in length and weigh in around 2 metric tons. An adult sperm whale averages around 50 feet and weigh in at around 40 tons. It would be inconceivable that anyone could mistake one for the other, even on sonar.

Diver 2: Holy shit, what the hell are they? Jesus, let's get out of here!

The sharks promptly eat the two divers amid much screaming, on the divers part, and roaring, on the shark's part. Then then seem to try and eat the door to the control room, causing much confusion inside to which Johnson responds by, appearing, to hit Control-Alt-Delete on one of the dozens of keyboards that make up most of this room's set. Presumably his plan is access the Task Manager and terminate the 'shark_attack_5.0' process tree.
This seems like a good point to mention that, of course, sharks can't roar. They're missing the prerequisite lungs and vocal chords needed to do so.
As the shark continue to try and eat the control room, Johnson is subjected to an increasing amount of sparks, water, agitated cameramen and a whole orchestra of sirens. At this point one screen is mentioning that there's a low oxygen level, which might actually make sense as there does appear to be a fire going. What is burning isn't obvious, perhaps some charcoal they brought down. In any case, the listing for the oxygen content is rated as a percentage, rather than as a barometric pressure reading which would make more sense. On the other hand, technically the ratio of oxygen to, probably nitrogen would fall as a percentage, but this deep you'd start out at at least 95% nitrogen anyway, so watching the readout passing down from mostly oxygen is, well, it's dumb. We all know what happens is you have a fire, or even a spark from an electrical cable hitting a nearly pure oxygen environment, it's called an inferno.

Johnson collapses and presumably dies. The sharks seem to realise this, and strop off elsewhere, pausing only to attack some kind of gantry.



Root

Act Two: Recruiting some assholes.