REVIEWED
9/13/08

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The Descent
Director: Neil Marshall
Year: 2005
TRT: 1:39


This here is a filmological oddity. It's essentially a chick flick, but most definitely in the horror genre. And done pretty well, at that. Fcuk Tarantino and his Death Proof. That was a cinematic turd that misfired on just about every level. This takes the female 'bonding' story and pretty much just ramps it up to 11. This fucker has no problems getting downright hellacious at times.

Synopsis: Crazy shit happens to six chicks who go spelunking. Well, they're more experienced than that, but you get the picture. Claustrophobia. There. I said it. You happy? But then it gets so much worse. And there's no punches pulled for friend obligation or betrayal. Seriously, it gets brutal.

While plausibility is a bit stretched for the main horror aspect of the film, the realization of it is pretty grounded. Some fairly well-built characters give the horrific bits that much more of an impact in the (mostly) realistic actions and dialogue. And for the majority of the pic taking place in a darkened cave setting, they did a great job of lighting it throughout, and keeping each of the characters and their locations distinct. I was hoping Marshall's follow-up film Doomsday would grow from this, but apparently not.

Great Scene: It's almost too much for a DMR watcher when it initiates the gag reflex, but it's fucking spooky-brutal when main protagonist Sarah unwittingly uses a pit of, well, we'll just say liquid, to try and escape from her pursuer. It borderlines evil.

Media Notes: DVR'd it in 1080iHD courtesy of Showtime. Looked and sounded good. I must say it does kinda suck in this instance for not having access to the alternate ending I've already seen for this (from the DVD release I'm presuming, though I did catch this in the theater as well. Can't imagine they'd show the alternate ending there. Fuck, maybe it was YouTube where I caught that, after the film. That seems more plausible. It's too recent a flick for me to have rented it already, anyways. So do what you gotta do, just know there's a different ending to the flick. And now, apparently, a sequel[?!?]). While this ending is okay if not a bit rushed, I thought the alternate was better, more suited to the way they set main character Sarah up from the beginning. Oh well, if nothing else, it's definitely worth a rental, see if my questionable memory serves correct. Or questionable taste. That's always in question, too.