The Descent Review (2005)

Spoiler-free so you can read before you watch

The Descent Review (2005)

Horrorific content by adrian on June 03rd, 2018 | Movie Review | Survival, Creature, Confined, Dangerous Exploration

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It's about a group of thrill-seeking friends who get hopeless stuck in a previously unexplored cave network. And they're not alone.

The Descent was directed by Neil Marshall (who also directed Dog Soldiers) and stars Shauna Macdonald (from The Mad), Natalie Mendoza  (from Surviving Evil) and Alex Reid .

Scream your last breath.

The Descent Review

I sat down to watch The Descent about a year ago. I made it about 20 minutes in before having my fill of girl-drama and shutting it off. There was just way too much personal life backstory (for a creature feature) for my taste.

I sat down, again, to watch The Descent a few months ago, this time with my 10 yr old son. We got about 30 mins in before he had his fill of the drama. It was thoroughly boring watching these women spat about their interpersonal relationships. I think we ended up watching the Evil Dead remake, due to its polar opposite vibe.

I sat down, yet again, to watch The Descent two days ago. This time I fast-forwarded until the 30 minute mark and decided to sit through it no matter what.

Turns out, this movie actually transitioned from soap opera to horror right around the 30 minute mark which made this third time a charm. And it ended up being pretty good. The concept was solid in that this group of thrill seekers were (unintentionally) exploring a previously unexplored cave network. Spaces were tight, they inevitably got lost and injuries slowed them down. Then the creatures showed up, which is when things really got exciting.

What wasn’t exciting was how the drama between all these women was an ongoing thing, all the way down to the very end there was sulking, scheming and backstabbing. I’m not opposed to drama being an element of horror, if it is an integral part of the story. Before I Wake comes to mind, it’s dripping in drama but with a purpose. The purpose of The Descent was survival from homicidal maniac creatures, not to heal old wounds or settle scores.

Of course, these women were tough as nails which did even things out.

Worth Watching?

Overall, if I had only watched the middle chunk of the movie I would have probably liked it a lot more than I did. And I probably would have been willing to watch the sequel.

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