THE LAST BREATH (2024). Review by Steve Kirkham

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THE LAST BREATH (2024)

3 stars
Signature Entertainment. Digital/DVD/Blu ray. 1st July

The film opens in WWII with the sinking of the battleship USS Charlotte off the coast of the British Virgin Islands. Cut to modern day – many have searched for the wreck but no one has found it yet. As luck, and plot lines, would have it, Noah (Jack Parr) is out diving from the boat of old captain, ex-diver Levi (Julian Sands in his last role) when he discovers it. The ship is intact having been buried under sand for all these years.

Next day his old college friends, who he hasn’t seen in years, arrive for a break – Brett (Alexander Arnold), his sister, and Noah’s ex Sam (Kim Spearman), who we learn is a doctor (I wonder if that will be significant later), Riley (Erin Mullen) and Logan (Argo Carter).

With Levi badly in debt, he is persuaded by the slightly obnoxious Brett, who is willing to pay him major money, to allow them all to dive down to the newly discovered wreck – in a script filled with this kind of thing, rather conveniently they are all certified divers. You also know that the fact that Levi is an ex-diver, who hasn’t done it for years, will come into play later.

Of course once they are down there things start to go wrong, as they swim through the labyrinthine ship, they find themselves trapped and being hunted by a shark (or is it several sharp toothed denizens of the deep). With air running out they must try and find a way out.

This is a generic thriller. However, it is well done of its type. Director Joachim Hedén clearly has a thing about underwater adventures – having co-written the screenplay for THE DIVE (2023) and written and directed the original Norwegian version of that film in 2020 as BREAKING SURFACE.

The script, this time out, is by Nick Saltrese, who also has previous with SHARK BAIT (2022), but is more at home in TV with the likes of HOLLYOAKS and THE BILL (Not a lot of sharks in those shows).

The film manages to build the tension as the group try and escape their predicament – though it does suffer from the usual issue of having the cast wearing masks as you can’t always tell who is who. Worth a watch as it is a solidly made outing, even if it isn’t very original.

Steve Kirkham