The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou2004

The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004)



Critic Consensus: Much like the titular oceanographer, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou's overt irony may come off as smug and artificial -- but for fans of Wes Anderson's unique brand of whimsy it might be worth the dive.

The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou Photos

Movie Info

Internationally famous oceanographer Steve Zissou and his crew--Team Zissou--set sail on an expedition to hunt down the mysterious, elusive, possibly non-existent Jaguar Shark that killed Zissou's partner during the documentary filming of their latest adventure. A young airline co-pilot who may or may not be Zissou's son, a beautiful journalist assigned to write a profile of Zissou, and Zissou's estranged wife and co-producer, Eleanor, joins them on their voyage. They face overwhelming complications including pirates, kidnapping, and bankruptcy.

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Bill Murray
as Steve Zissou
Owen Wilson
as Ned Plimpton
Cate Blanchett
as Jane Winslett-Richardson
Anjelica Huston
as Eleanor Zissou
Willem Dafoe
as Klaus Daimler
Jeff Goldblum
as Alistair Hennessey
Michael Gambon
as Oseary Drakoulias
Noah Taylor
as Vladimir Wolodarsky
Bud Cort
as Bill Ubell
Seu Jorge
as Pele dos Santos
Robyn Cohen
as Anne-Marie Sakowitz
Waris Ahluvalia
as Vikram Ray
Niels Koizumi
as Bobby Ogata
Pawel Wdowczak
as Renzo Pietro
Seymour Cassel
as Esteban du Plantier
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News & Interviews for The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou

Critic Reviews for The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou

All Critics (225) | Top Critics (63)

The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou is so knowing and so arch: the first part striving for a faux-grandiosity that the second part tries to undercut by its pseudo-geekiness... but ends up being plain annoying.

April 1, 2019 | Full Review…

How much of this will work for you depends on your appetite for the picturesquely dysfunctional.

April 1, 2019 | Full Review…

It is such a brilliant idea, and everything looks so great, especially the way the film is constructed on Cousteau-esque lines, with the calm deliberation of a nature documentary from a more innocent age.

April 1, 2019 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Orson Welles said a film studio was the best train-set a boy could have, but The Life Aquatic is something else: Anderson uses the sound stages of Cinecittá like a kid playing with toy boats in the bath. He makes one hell of a splash.

March 31, 2019

A lovely, slightly wistful, tragicomedy.

March 31, 2019 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Like the jaguar shark, The Life Aquatic is hard to get a hook into.

March 17, 2014

Audience Reviews for The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou

Beautiful quirky graphic style, but the dialogue was blah and Steve Zissou was not a likable character. Only Owen Wilson's heartfelt earnestness salvaged the film for me. I liked the story and dialogue in Fantastic Mr Fox and Grand Budapest far better.

Letitia Lew
Letitia Lew

Super Reviewer


An aging underwater nature documentarian assembles a team to hunt down the jaguar shark that ate his partner, including a pregnant journalist he has a crush on and a pilot who may or may not be his illegitimate son. It's "Moby Dick" by way of Jacques Cousteau, an epic comedy with a great cast, pirates, and deliberately artificial animated tropical fish; it's also the driest underwater comedy you'll ever see.

Greg S
Greg S

Super Reviewer



Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

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