Film Review: The Descent (2005)

Also known as: The Dark (original script title), Crawlspace (working title)
Release Date: March 11th, 2005 (Brussels International Festival of Fantasy Films)
Directed by: Neil Marshall
Written by: Neil Marshall
Music by: David Julyan
Cast: Shauna Macdonald, Natalie Mendoza, Alex Reid, Saskia Mulder, MyAnna Buring, Nora-Jane Noone

Celador Films, Northmen Productions, Pathé, Lionsgate, 99 Minutes, 100 Minutes (Original Unrated Cut)


“The noise she’s making, she’ll bring every one of those things down on her head.” – Rebecca

I’ve been a horror fan my entire life. However, I never felt the urge to see this. It seemed like it would just be about a bunch of thrill seeking women lost in dark claustrophobic caves getting picked off by a bunch of unimaginative inbred mutants that have a taste for people meat.

It is exactly what I thought it would be.

It’s not that the core of the premise is bad, it’s just derivative and been done to death in dozens of different ways. There is nothing about this movie that gives it its own unique twist or makes it different. The only major difference is that they’re all women and they’re in a really tight cave. All the setting says to me is that someone had to come up with a horror movie that cost absolutely nothing to make outside of renting camera and sound equipment and having to buy lunch for a the unknown stars of the picture.

The movie isn’t exciting, it isn’t well thought out, there’s nothing that reels you in and frankly, the boring ass monsters don’t even show up for a really long time. When the big shock of the first monster’s appearance happens, it was a shot that was already in every trailer for this film and thus, already spoiled.

The Descent tries to be suspenseful but it’s attempts just didn’t work. Really, I was more interested in seeing the girls try to work their way out of a cavern that they’re trapped in than watching them have a murder party with the slimy cave dwellers that looked too much like the Flukeman from The X-Files. I’d rather just have a Flukeman movie, that shit would be awesome. Well, maybe not now but if they made it in the ’90s.

This isn’t terrible but it isn’t good or memorable. It’s in this weird boring limbo and I don’t think that I’ll ever be interested in watching it again, let alone its sequel.

Rating: 4.75/10
Pairs well with: I would assume The Descent 2 but I’ve never seen it.