Dreamworks What Lies Beneath

Last updated date: July 1, 2019

DWYM Score
5.4


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We looked at the top Fiction Movies and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Fiction Movie you should buy.

Overall Take

In our analysis of 118 expert reviews, the Dreamworks Dreamworks What Lies Beneath placed 7th when we looked at the top 10 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

Editor's Note August 12, 2019:
Checkout The Best Fiction Movie for a detailed review of all the top fiction movies.

Expert Summarized Score
4.8
10 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
6.6
111,320 user reviews
Our Favorite Video Reviews
What experts liked
Slowburning and suggestive, the mystery builds from all directions, with supernatural pointers, strange keys, a neighbour’s wife (Otto) going mysteriously absent, and various hints of a troubled past implying a myriad possibilities. All of it punctuated by classic ‘Gotcha!’ moments and black humour.
- Empire
Pfeiffer is very good in the movie; she is convincing and sympathetic and avoids the most common problem for actors in horror films--she doesn't overreact.
- Roger Ebert
Michelle Pfeiffer (Claire) and Harrison Ford (Norman) are both solid actors and they deliver the goods. Ford even gets to try new things and he’s awesome at it.
- Jo Blo
WHAT LIES BENEATH has plenty of scary moments and action to keep its story moving and the audience involved.
- Movie Guide
“What Lies Beneath” is one of the scariest movies I can remember seeing. Although director Zemeckis blatantly steals from other thrillers, he does it with such a flourish that you find yourself squeezing the arm rests and jumping with every burst of high pitched underscoring.
- Dove
To the limited extent that What Lies Beneath does work, much of the credit goes to Pfeiffer, who’s in virtually every scene. I may have had a hard time believing this movie, but I believed that she believed it, which was a definite plus.
- Decent Films
What experts didn't like
It’s in the midriff that the movie really sags. Domestic trauma takes over, events become talky and flat, while an encouraging red herring is abandoned far too early, and it seems that the much more enticing spooky stuff has just been forgotten.
- Empire
The trailer of this movie thoroughly demolishes the surprises; if you've seen the trailer, you know what the movie is about, and all of the suspense of the first hour is superfluous for you, including major character revelations.
- Roger Ebert
Relatively mild violence is overshadowed by visual shockers. Meanwhile, about a dozen profanities include one f-word and several blasphemous uses of the Lord’s name.What Lies Beneath may be an effective white-knuckler, but it’s certainly not a family-friendly one.
- Plugged In
The film does manage to creep you out, is filled with BOO scares (they crank up the volume) and has Hitchcock inspirations all over the place (Ford’s name is Norman…hello!). You might say it rips off the master, I see it more as an homage.
- Jo Blo
Finally, this movie contains a lot of foul language with too many really scary scenes, especially for children and young teenagers.
- Movie Guide
What Lies Beneath, a wobbly, intermittently effective ghost story, doesn’t really work even while you’re watching it, and after it’s over it only gets worse.
- Decent Films

From The Manufacturer

The wife of a professor investigates the murder of a beautiful college student who has been appearing to her.

Overall Product Rankings

1. Lionsgate Pulp Fiction
Overall Score: 8.4
Expert Reviews: 12
2. Paramount Pictures Star Trek
Overall Score: 7.4
Expert Reviews: 14
3. Warner Bros. Jupiter Ascending
Overall Score: 6.7
Expert Reviews: 13
4. Universal Studios Dune
Overall Score: 6.7
Expert Reviews: 7
5. Paramount Pictures Star Trek: Insurrection
Overall Score: 6.4
Expert Reviews: 10
6. Lionsgate Daybreakers
Overall Score: 6.2
Expert Reviews: 10
7. Dreamworks What Lies Beneath
Overall Score: 5.4
Expert Reviews: 10
8. Paramount Pictures Next
Overall Score: 5.1
Expert Reviews: 8
9. Europa The Circle
Overall Score: 4.0
Expert Reviews: 11
10. Paramount Pictures Transformers: The Last Knight
Overall Score: 3.8
Expert Reviews: 13

An Overview On Fiction Movies

It’s never been easier to watch a movie. At the click of a remote button, you can access whatever movie suits your mood, whether it was released earlier this year or decades ago. Some movies are available for free with a subscription, while others cost only a few dollars to rent or buy.

Before you commit to a movie, though, you may wonder if it’s worth the time investment. There are some films that are so well-known, all you need to hear is a title to know what you’ll get. However, even a good reputation doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll like a movie. Some viewers prefer intense action with plenty of fight scenes, while others like comedy woven into their films, no matter the genre.

If you’re renting or buying an older movie, one big question you’ll likely have is whether it stands the test of time. Today’s TVs are built to render visuals in vivid detail, so you’ll want to make sure your chosen movie supports that. Many older films have been digitally remastered to meet today’s high-definition standards, but you may find that not all of the movies online offer that.

In addition to visuals, the content of the movies themselves don’t always stand the test of time. What was unique or relevant to previous generations may no longer hold up. Some classics have been heavily imitated as well, making them seem less original when viewed after their successors. If you can think of the movie you’re watching in context, you’ll probably enjoy it more than if you compare it to today’s pop culture trends.

Lastly, you may wonder if the movie you’re choosing is family-friendly. Even if you won’t be watching with children, this is relevant. Profanity, violence and other mature content can be disturbing to some viewers, especially in extreme amounts. It’s important to look into that before you choose a movie to view, even if you’re watching a film that’s considered a classic.

DYWM Fun Fact

The first step toward streaming movies at home is to set your TV up to access streaming services like Amazon Prime, Hulu and Netflix. If you have an Amazon Prime membership, the TV shows and movies that are part of its service are included in your subscription. A smart TV will connect to your home’s Wi-Fi and let you navigate to those services using your remote. You’ll need to set up a username and password first, which can be easier on a computer or mobile device, and then simply input your password using your remote. You can also rent movies using your cable or dish provider’s on-demand service or through Redbox, which offers both a streaming service and actual DVDs you can pick up at their physical locations.

The Fiction Movie Buying Guide

  • Released in 1994, Lionsgate’s “Pulp Fiction” was the movie that put director Quentin Tarantino on the map. It’s a collection of stories, woven together in creative ways. At the time, it was a gangster movie unlike anything ever seen before, bringing comedy and realistic dialogue to a genre that was traditionally very serious. The dialogue is, indeed, one of the best things about “Pulp Fiction,” making characters jump off the screen and entertaining you from start to finish.
  • No matter when you were born, there’s no escaping the ongoing legacy of the “Star Trek” series. In 2009, Paramount Pictures rebooted the franchise with “Lost” producer J.J. Abrams behind the camera, taking the series back to the beginning. The movie was a big hit upon its release, bringing fresh faces to the characters previous generations knew all too well.
  • Although Warner Bros.’ “Jupiter Ascending” was a bomb when it was initially released, it might be worth checking out now that you can rent it for a low price. The biggest problem with “Jupiter Ascending” was the expense to make it, putting it in the tough position of needing to sell an extraordinary amount of tickets once it hit theaters. But you can’t go wrong with stars Channing Tatum and Mila Kunis, and a space opera just sounds like a great time, no matter what it’s about.
  • In 2020, “Dune” releases in theaters, remaking a film that has become a cult classic over the years. In 1984, Universal Studios’ “Dune” came out to bad reviews and lackluster ticket sales. Perhaps the most interesting thing about “Dune” is that it was made by a director with no interest in science fiction, yet somehow it’s managed to engage sci-fi fans in recent years. It’s also well worth watching to see Patrick Stewart early in his career.
  • Whether you’re sharing movie night with children or not, content is important. Paramount Pictures’ “Star Trek,” Warner Bros.’ “Jupiter Ascending,” and Universal Studios’ “Dune” are all PG-13, making them suitable for audiences ages 13 and up. Lionsgate’s “Pulp Fiction,” on the other hand, has an R rating. If you’re averse to profanity, you’ll particularly want to avoid “Pulp Fiction” and “Star Trek,” since both feature strong language.
  • Although Lionsgate’s “Pulp Fiction” has plenty of light moments, don’t be fooled by the comedy. The movie has some extremely violent moments, as well as mature content involving drugs and sex.
  • Often what you sign up for when you rent or buy a movie is enjoyable characters. You won’t get much better than Lionsgate’s “Pulp Fiction” when it comes to that. The dialogue brings the characters to life, making them likable even when they’re doing very unlikable things. Paramount Pictures’ “Star Trek” doesn’t disappoint, either, staying true to the original characterizations of both Captain Kirk and Spock. With Warner Bros.’ “Jupiter Ascending,” you may struggle with the characters at times, but Channing Tatum’s performance makes the hero likable. Dune packs in director David Lynch’s famed abstract style, with characters who are likably quirky.
  • If you enjoyed “Pulp Fiction” 25 years ago, you’ll find it just as powerful as it was originally. Even if you’re new to the film, though, you’ll still find it entertaining and unique.
  • Paramount Pictures’ “Star Trek” had some big shoes to feel, and it did so capably. However, you won’t find the film as cerebral as “Pulp Fiction.” It’s designed for entertainment, with a big special effects budget that provides plenty to watch.
  • With Warner Bros.’ “Jupiter Ascending,” you may find the story a bit hard to follow, and the characters don’t have quite the development necessary to make it a character-driven film.
  • Universal Studios’ “Dune” is one of those movies that seem to get better in retrospect. Today’s viewers can appreciate the artistic vision Lynch brought to the project. Since the screenplay follows the book fairly closely, that means you’ll also get a legitimately riveting story as well.