Before The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou*, before Sealab 2021 (or even Sealab 2020), there was:

Hello Down There

From the Onion's Films That Time Forgot: "Is it really better down where it's wetter, as animated crabs suggest? That's what Tony Randall intends to find out when he signs his family up to live in his experimental underwater house, in an attempt to convince his skeptical boss Jim Backus that the model is feasible. Randall's wife Janet Leigh is terrified of water (which, after Psycho, is understandable), but concedes anyway. So do the shaggy ruffians in Harold And The Hang-Ups, an anonymous, faintly hippie-ish pop-rock outfit that includes Randall and Leigh's fresh-faced progeny, plus a young Richard Dreyfuss. The gang soon learns that the life aquatic can also be la vida loca, thanks to sharks, technical malfunctions, professional competition, dancing sea creatures, cheap animated sequences, and a wacky comic-relief seal. Even worse, a hurricane threatens to end Randall's experiment prematurely. But everything works out in time for the band's big closing underwater performance on The Merv Griffin Show." More from the Onion review of this terrible Ivan Tors film from 1969:
Can easily be distinguished by:
It's virtually alone in the underwater-house rock 'n' roll family-comedy subgenre.

Timeless message:
Placing one's family in mortal danger is a great way to cultivate teamwork and togetherness.

Memorable quotes:
Griffin introduces Harold And The Hang-Ups by assuring the audience that the band's manager is "stoned on these shouters," finding them to be "mellow yellow, turned-on, and groovy!"

*Zissou: tied for best film of 2004 with I Heart Huckabees, Oscars notwithstanding. From imdb's memorable quotes: Steve Zissou: "Anne-Marie, do all the interns get Glocks?" Anne-Marie Sakowitz: "No, they have to share one."

- tom moody 5-21-2005 6:09 am