This epic science fiction action film is set 200 years in the future. The polar ice caps have melted, flooding the continents and creating a giant ocean where the few remaining people dwell on board ships or atolls made from scrap metal. Fresh water and soil have become rare and valuable currency. The Mariner (Kevin Costner) lives aboard his triple-hulled catamaran. Mariner, self-sufficient and solitary, is an outcast because he has developed functional gills and webbed feet. Looking for supplies, Mariner visits an atoll fortress where the people, frightened and half-crazed, imprison him in a cage and intend to execute him. As the execution is about to take place, the fortress is attacked by a gang, The Smokers, led by Deacon (Dennis Hopper) who has come to search for a little girl with a tattoo on her back (a configuration said to be a map to dry land). The girl and her mother (Jeanne Tripplehorn) escape with the reluctant Mariner. Eventually Deacon and the Smokers recapture the girl, and Mariner must save both the girl and himself. The film, which boasts spectacular special effects, was notorious for production problems causing it to end up millions of dollars over budget. Despite many flaws, the film is entertaining, mainly due to a totally outrageous over-the-top performance by Dennis Hopper. The cinematography is exceptionally beautiful, showing the Hawaiian locations to great advantage.