After a nuclear submarine mysteriously sinks in a remote part of the ocean floor, a team of divers on a prototype underwater oil rig are pressed into service by the U.S. Navy in a rescue attempt. When a hurricane cuts off contact between the surface and the underwater depths, the crew begin to see evidence of a strange, possibly alien intelligence at work. While chief Bud Brigman (Ed Harris) bickers with his ex-wife and boss (Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio), the Navy commander begins to grow increasingly paranoid about the mysterious alien life and threatens to use a recovered nuclear weapon to destroy everything. James Cameron's undersea epic is a tale of sacrifice and hope in an amazing alien landscape that covers 2/3 of the Earth's surface. Featuring landmark visual effects but plagued by production difficulties, the cast and crew were stretched to the breaking point and THE ABYSS became one of the most expensive films ever made in its time, but the final result is a remarkable blend of action and human drama. Scenes cut from the theatrical version, including a number of special effects sequences involving huge tidal waves threatening the cities of the world, are restored in the Special Edition versions.