Written and Directed by: Neil Marshall
Starring: Shauna Macdonald, Natalie Jackson Mendoza, Alex Reid
One of the best times Ive recently had watching a movie; The Descent knows its job and does it well. Its the horror story of a group of British women who travel to the Appalachians for some adventure and excitement deep in a supposed tourist cave. Only when theyve gone too far do they find out the cave was actually unclaimed by mankind, anyway.
The creation of writer/director Neil Marshall, who also wrote and directed the highly entertaining Dog Soldiers, The Descent is straightforward and scary. Yes, the synopsis has you thinking of The Cave, but these two films differ in at least one important factor: You should actually watch this one. Im sure there are more, but I dont plan on giving 90 minutes of my life to that other movie.
Dog Soldiers was slightly hampered by its special effects, which werent necessarily bad but simply werent used effectively in some scenes. Im a fan of the if-it-looks-dumb-dont-show-it technique, where you arent allowed to see enough of a disappointing costume or creation to laugh at it. Instead, its hiding in the shadows or some other technical trickery is used to fool your eye. The Descent lends itself well to shadows and minimal lighting, but the creature effects are still excellent and the gore makes you squirm.