The Rift (1990 film)

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The Rift (Endless Descent)
Directed byJuan Piquer Simón
Written byJuan Piquer Simón
Mark Klein
David Coleman
Produced byFrancesca De Laurentiis
Jose Escriva
Juan Piquer Simón
StarringJack Scalia
R. Lee Ermey
Ray Wise
Deborah Adair
John Toles-Bey
CinematographyJuan Mariné
Edited byIsaac Sehayek
Christopher Holmes
Music byJoel Goldsmith
Dister Group
Distributed byTrimark Pictures
Release dates
March, 9th 1990
West Germany:
July 26, 1990
United States:
October 5, 1990
May 30, 1991
Running time
79 minutes
CountriesUnited States

The Rift, also known as Endless Descent, is a 1990 film directed by Juan Piquer Simón and starring R. Lee Ermey. The story involves a submarine rescue that goes awry. It is one of many underwater-themed movies released around 1990, including The Abyss, Leviathan, DeepStar Six, The Evil Below and Lords of the Deep.


An experimental submarine, the "Siren II", with an experienced NATO crew is sent to find out what happened to the missing "Siren I". The designer of the sub blames the Contek corporation's modifications to his original design. The Siren II is captained by experienced officer Captain Randolph Phillips.

The Siren II traces the Siren I's black box to an underwater rift. They are surrounded by a toxic weed, although an on-board scientist says plant life at this depth is impossible. The Siren II escapes the weed by reversing the polarity of the hull, although some of the weed gets into the sub.

Later, they surface in a cave system where they discover that Contek has been engaged in illegal genetic engineering experiments that have produced a variety of mutant creatures.[1]


  • Jack Scalia as Wick Hayes
  • R. Lee Ermey as Capt. Randall Phillips
  • Ray Wise as H. Robbins
  • Deborah Adair as Lt. Nina Crowley
  • John Toles Bey as Joe "Skeets" Kane
  • Ely Pouget as Ana Rivera
  • Emilio Linder as Philippe Huppert
  • Tony Isbert as Roger Fleming
  • Álvaro Labra as Dr. Carlo Camerini
  • Luis Lorenzo as Francisco Grau
  • Frank Braña as H. Mueller
  • Pocholo Martínez-Bordiú as Sven Holst (as J. Martinez Bordiu)
  • Edmund Purdom as CEO Steensland
  • Garrick Hagon as Barton (as Garick Hagon)
  • James Aubrey as Contek 1
  • Derrick Vopelka as Contek 2
  • Jed Downey as Tony Garner (Man on Tapes)


The Rift is considered a "B" movie. Reviewers noted the lack of originality in its plot, but praised the film for providing action-packed entertainment on a limited budget.[2][3][4]

Moria gave the picture one (out of a possible five) stars: "R. Lee Ermey gives a likeable performance, but the script is unfocused; the motives of the conglomerate funding the expedition are unclear; and the climax is unsatisfying."[5]

Brandon's Cult Movie Reviews called the film a "decent" one.[6]

Creature Feature gave the movie two (out of a possible five) stars, finding it to be "an ineffective Aliens knock-off."[7]

Den of Geek found the picture to be "entertaining."[8]

Movie historian Leonard Maltin declared the film a "BOMB", stating that "...Anybody who sticks around for the climax ought to be decorated for their trouble...As usual, R. Lee Ermey acts circles around most of his co-stars; but, ultimately, even he cannot sell this bill of goods."[9]

Home Release[edit]

The film was released on Region 1 Blu-ray in 2016.[10]


  1. ^ "The Rift (a.k.a. Endless Descent) (1989) Kino Lorber Blu-ray Review". The Movie Elite, October 3, 2016 by David J. Moore
  2. ^ "Film Review: The Rift (1990)", Beneath the Ground, David J. Sharp on Dec 15, 2016.
  3. ^ "Blu-ray Review: 'The Rift' is a Fun, Knockoff of Better Movies" Bloody Disgusting, by Chris Coffel. June 8, 2017
  4. ^ The Rift (AKA Endless Descent, March 1990)". Den of Geek, Ryan Lambie Jun 6, 2017
  5. ^ "The Rift (1990)". 28 December 2004.
  6. ^ Brandon's Cult Movie Reviews: THE RIFT. YouTube. Archived from the original on 2021-12-11.
  7. ^ Stanley, J. (2000) Creature Feature: 3rd Edition
  8. ^ "The Undersea Horror Movies of the Late 1980s". 6 June 2017.
  9. ^ Maltin's TV, Movie, & Video Guide
  10. ^ "The Rift Blu-ray (Endless Descent)".

External links[edit]