126. Crimson Tide (1995)

crimson tide

*The Warlock opens the door to his lair. He’s wearing a black wifebeater, blue jeans, white sneakers, gargoyle shades and an NCIS hat. He’s holding a wine glass of Dr Pepper*

Warlock: Welcome to my lair…welcome I don’t think so, but enter. Enter my lair if you dare. I’m your host The Warlock.

*Warlock makes flame appear in his hand then closes it. He walks inside.*

Warlock: NCIS Appreciation Month continues with Crimson Tide, the 1995 thriller starring Denzel Washington and Gene Hackman.

*Mr America is sitting in the recliner wearing green camo fatigues, vest and hat along with black combat boots and aviator shades*

America: I’ve heard of that one. This should be good.

*Warlock takes his seat in the middle of the couch *

Warlock: So let’s get started with Crimson Tide.


*The Warlock reads the tag-line*

Warlock: “On a US nuclear missile sub, a young first officer stages a mutiny to prevent his trigger happy captain from launching his missiles before confirming his orders to do so.”

America: No sense of adventure!


*Opening graphic read the 3 most powerful men in the world are the US president, the Russian president and the captain of a US Nuclear Missile Sub*

America: I strongly disagree.

Warlock: Why?

America: Well for starters there’s more than one nuclear sub! The statement is bullshit!


*CNN reporter Richard Valeriani (Himself) is on the deck of a French aircraft carrier reports that Chechnyan dictator Vladimir Radchenko (Daniel von Bargen) has taken over half of Russia and declares war on the US. The CNN reporter says French planes are departing*

America: WHAT???

Warlock: They’re not French?

America: Those were American F-14 tomcats. Nothing French about it!

Warlock: We’re 2 minutes into the movie and you’re already irate.


*Bob the Magician (Bob Stone) and his aide (Chris Ellis) performs in front of Lt Commander Ron Hunter (Denzel Washington), his wife Julia (Vanessa Bell Calloway), their kids Luke (Brenden Jefferson) and Robin (Ashley Calloway), Lt. Peter “Weps” Ince (Viggo Mortensen), and Peter’s son Henry (Henry Mortensen). Bob needs a volunteer*

America: I’m not volunteering for your lame ass parlor trick.

Warlock: I can throw fire better than he can.

America: For the love of Pete, don’t.


*Warren Olney (himself) says Chechnyans are invading as Ron looks on. Weps  joins him and says this looks bad*

Warlock: Real bad.


*Captain Frank Ramsey (Gene Hackman) goes over Ron’s resume*

Warlock: Frank Ramsey the Celtics player?

America: NO!


*Ramsey says his X.O. has appendicitis and he needs a replacement. He bullshits with Ron as Bear the dog barks away. His COB (George Dzundza) laughs with them. Ramsey hires Ron on the spot*

Warlock: Its Gus from Basic Instinct.


*Vladimir claims he will kill 900,000 people if one Chechnyan is killed*

Warlock: That all?


*Ramsey addresses his senior officers which include, Cob, Weps, Ron, Lt Roy Zimmer (Matt Craven), Lt Bobby Dougherty (James Gandolfini), Lt Darik Westerguard (Rocky Carroll) and Admiral Williams (Tommy Bush). Warlock stands and shouts*


America: Is that necessary? I thoughr we were done with that shit.


*Admiral and Captain give the marching orders to patrol the Korean border in case anything funny happens up the Chechnyan coastline*

Warlock: And so it begins.


*Weps introduces Bobby, Billy Linkletter (Scott Burkholder), Darik and Roy. The boys talk about Ramsey’s combat missions and credentials*

Warlock: Character development, its a miracle.

America: Yeah, GOOD movies have them.


*Bobby yells at Sailor with Oba (Victor Togunde) and makes him drop and give him 20*

Warlock: What a dick.


*Ron says goodbye to his kids and dog as Davis (Armand Watson) salutes him and welcomes him on the bus. Ramsey gives a huge speech on the deck of the submarine about having pride. Cob repeats everything he says*

Warlock: Come on Gus.


*Ramsey and Hunter share a bonding moment top side before they dive. Ramsey is impressed that Hunter is taking in the scenery and not ruining the moment. He then says “I can’t stand save-asses and I can’t stand kiss-asses”

Warlock: Can’t stand stink-asses either.


*Montage of the sub diving*

Warlock: This music sucks.


*Senior officers banter about the atomic bomb and World War 2. Hunter and Ramsey have a back and forth exchange about war. Later the crew is listening to Nowhere To Run*

Warlock: Let me get my Warriors vest.


*Rono (Mark Christopher Lawrence) sets the kitchen on fire. Hunter saves the day. Ramsey orders a Weapon Systems Readiness test. Petty Officer Russell Vossler (Lillo Brancato) is on the conn*

Warlock: Great, its C from A Bronx Tale.


*Roy, Darik and Ron authenticate the message. This is an exercise*

Warlock: America, drop and give me 20, this is an exercise.

America: Fuck off.


*Chief Petty Offcer Rick Marichek (Earl Billings) is going into cardiac arrest. Ramsey stops the drill to attend to the CPO. Officer of the Deck Mahoney (Jaime Gomez) has the conn. Marichek dies and everyone is sad*

Warlock and America: *Fake death* Ehhhhhhhhh


*Ron and Frank have a back and forth exchange about what just happened. Frank doesn’t mind questions or second-guessing in private but not in front of the crew. He tells Ron to bite his fucking tongue. Ron is clear about that. Frank says the best time to run a drill is under fire or under confusion because war is never hunky dory*

Warlock: Good point.


Frank “Short of the outbreak of world war 3, the ship sinking or being attacked by a giant octopus, I’d like to be alone for the next 30 minutes”

Warlock: Hahahahaha.


*Frank says it was Marichek’s obesity that killed him, not the fire*

Warlock: Dick thing to say.


*Montage of Ron training*

Warlock: Is this a sub movie or the next Rocky?

America: I like it.


*Ron in private complains to Weps about running the drill. Weps says Ron needs to shut up and take it as Weps listens to Sweet Home Alabama*

Warlock: Good song.


*Frank gets an emergency message. Hunter tells the crew they may have to fire nuclear missiles at Russia. We’re at DEFCON 3, the first emergency this big since the Cuban Missile Crisis.*

America: There’s your typical military awareness.


*Bennefield (Eric Bruskotter) and Petty Officer Danny Rivetti (Danny Nucci) get into a fight. Ron investigates. Rivetti says the fight was over Silver Surfer comics. Hunter threatens to write him up if it happens again. Meanwhile Ramsey wants another drill done because Weps couldn’t get it right. Hunter says the crew may need a pat on the back because they’re on edge. Frank gets on the intercom and says if anyone can’t handle the pressure, leave now. Hunter “Very inspiring”*

Warlock: Ruh-roh.


*The navigators spot a sub incoming. They have to man battle stations. Frank tells the crew to counter-move until they find out who the sub is. Meanwhile another EMA comes in that the Russians are about to launch. Chief of Watch Hunsicker (Michael Milhoan) mans the station as the officers confirm the missile launch. The captain alerts the crew that they may be going to war*

America: And then we do more stuff!


*Ramsey “I have the conn.” Ron “You have the conn”*

Warlock: I thought I had the conn.

America: Why would YOU have the conn?


*Sonar guys figure out the enemy sub is Russian. Frank says prepare for battle and the crew obliges*


America: They can’t hear you.


*The ship gets a second message but they’re out of range and can’t decode the message properly. They have 8 minutes before missile launch. The buoy winch breaks and they’re cut off. The Russian sub is attacking. Torpedos are launched but Ramsey counter manuvers. The first torpedo misses by a mile but the second one rattles the sub. After the attack, there’s minimal damage apart from some cuts and bruises. The second EAM message is in pieces*


America: “Oh wait, it says don’t launch missiles”

Warlock: “Oh okay. CANCEL LAUNCH!”

America and Warlock: THE END!


*Hunter and Ramsey go back and forth about launching the missiles. Frank ends it shouting “NOW SHUT THE FUCK UP!” in front of the crew. Frank needs Hunter’s okay to launch the missiles under navy regulations and Hunter refuses. Ramsey tries to have Hunter relieved of command but Hunter uses his executive order to have Ramsey relieved*

Warlock: Oh boy…..what side will the crew pick? Isn’t this exciting?

America: Yeah.


*Ramsey tries to have Hunter removed and arrested but Cob sides with Hunter under navy regulations, Ramsey is now under arrest. Mitchell and Walker must escort Ramsey to his quarters. Before he goes, Ramsey says Hunter is out of his league and not ready to make tough decisions. Meanwhile down below, Weps is wondering what they’re waiting for. Meanwhile Hunter says if anyone disagrees with the mutiny, leave. No one leaves*

Warlock: Are you going anywhere?

America: Hell no.


*Hunter addresses the crew as the acting captain. The crew is shocked and stunned. Back in his quarters, Ramsey goes over the personnel file of Hunter. Meanwhile Cob gives Hunter a tongue lashing saying he isn’t on Hunter’s side but Ramsey was out of line. He does things by the book. Meanwhile the communications are shot and the Russian sub re-appears*

Warlock: Holy shit!


*Torpedos are launched. Hunter’s manuvers and counter firing blows the Russian sub to smithereens, but the third torpedo whacks the Alabama. The bilge bay is flooded*

Warlock: Take that you Russian bastards.

America: Oops.


*3 guys are trapped inside the bilge bay including Barnes (Steve Zahn). Meanwhile propulsion goes offline and the sub begins to sink*

Warlock: Uh oh, 1,850 feet and they’re a crunched soda can.

America: There’s 45 minutes left, there would be no movie.


*Hunter has to make the call to seal the bilge bay with the 3 guys trapped inside to save the ship. All 3 die and Lt Hellerman (Ricky Schroder) has to seal the hatch on them*

Warlock: Poor Silver Spoons.


*The power is restored, the ship is saved and everyone rejoices*



*Bobby runs into Ramsey’s quarters and pledges allegiance. Ramsey says to round up Roy, Darick and Weps and come back and get him. A mutiny is afoot!*

Warlock: Ruh-roh!

America: Another mutiny.


*Roy and Darick is with Bobby but Weps refuses. Roy “You don’t put on a condom unless you’re going to fuck!”

Warlock: Good line.


*Weps is initially talked into joining the mutiny. They all arm themselves with pistols and sub-machine guns*

Warlock: Is that necessary?


*Ramsey’s men bust him out. Hunter counters with Rivetti and Cob. He hands Rivetti the keys to the sub*

Warlock: Who can you trust?


*Vossler can’t fix the communications. Hunter gives him a pep talk to get it done. All of a sudden Ramsey’s men take control of the bridge. Hunter reluctantly surrenders. He gives Weps a death glare as Bobby leads him away. Cob is arrested as well. Ramsey says the missile launch is back on. They prepare to launch but Weps is sad. Bennefield tries to bully Rivetti but he overpowers him and breaks out Cob and Hunter.  Hunter gathers a crew of sailors, arms themselves and calls Weps to stop him. Weps initially refuses. Meanwhile Vossler is trying to fix the radio but failing. Ramsey gives the order to launch but Weps has a change of heart and refuses. Ramsey’s men storm the firing control room while Hunter’s men race to the conn*

Warlock: Are you enjoying the big finale?

America: Ohh yes.


*Ramsey threatens to kill Weps but Weps doesn’t budge since he’s the only one that knows the combination. Ramsey threatens to kill Hillaire (Scott Grimes) and Weps reluctantly opens the safe. Meanwhile Hunter’s men makes it to the bridge just in time to stop the launch. Ramsey’s men are on their way as Bobby calls Weps a piece of shit. Hunter has the crew following orders as Vossler has the radio all but fixed. Ramsey’s men make it to the bridge. Ramsey slaps Hunter across the face and demands the missile key. Hunter puts it around his neck. Ramsey slaps him again and demands the “fucking” key. Meanwhile Vossler has the radio fixed. Ramsey says to Hunter that Vossler has 3 minutes to decode the full message or they launch*

Warlock: Isn’t this exciting?

America: Very.


*To pass time, Hunter and Ramsey talk horses again. They share back and forth banter as Vossler runs around like a madman to decode the message*

Warlock: Not exactly running around street corners in the Bronx.

America: What?

Warlock: Nevermind.


*Roy and Darik retrieve the message. Ramsey reads it and is stunned. He gets on the comm and cancels the launch order. The crew celebrates as the bridge is tense. Ramsey relieves himself of duty and gives control to Hunter. Hunter reads the message that says the Chechnyans have been overthrown*

Warlock: Ha….”we give up!”

America: Pretty much.


*Meanwhile at Pearl Harbor, the Admiral (Jason Robards) goes over the Court Martial of Ramsey and Hunter. The Admiral appears to favor Ramsey but then goes on a speech saying they were both right and both wrong. He gives them an unofficial tongue lashing off the record for the double mutiny. On record, Captain Ramsey retires and has named Hunter his replacement. Hunter is stunned*

Warlock: What a swerve!


*Hunter thanks Ramsey. They salute and Ramsey leaves with the damn dog*

Warlock: Let me guess, the dog won best supporting actor.

America: I was going to say the leash.

Warlock: Ok, the dog’s leash is best supporting actor.


Mr. America’s assessment: I give it a 6. Its decent but very dry.

The Warlock’s assessment: I’ll give it a 7. I get what you’re saying.

Final Grade:  6.5 out of 10, Very Good.


*Warlock rises from the couch*

Warlock: Gene Hackman could play the heel as good as anyone in the 90’s. This movie was more drama than action but it worked very well. I definitely give this a recommendation. What about you?

America: Yeah.

Warlock: That about wraps up another goodtastic adventure, have a pleasant evening.



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