The Descent (2005)

I’ve been in this weird horror obsession and picking the worst times to start and/or finish them (aka in the middle of the night).  Next up, we have a fairly more recent movie blogger that I’ve followed from Liam at Liam Does Film. After a recent review of The Hole (find HERE), he recommended to me a few British horror.  The Descent was the one I chose to watch with no prior knowledge at all because Netflix seemed to think it was something I’d like also ;).  Let’s check it out!

the descent coverDirector: Neil Marshall

Cast: Shauna Macdonald, Natalie Mendoza, Alex Reid, Saskia Mulder, MyAnna Buring, Nora-Jane Noone

A year after Sarah’s (Shauna Macdonald) tragic accident where she loses her husband and her daughter, one of her extreme adventurist friends Juno (Natalie Mendoza) invites her and her best friend Beth (Alex Reid) to go on a cave exploration trip with two other friends and sisters, Rebecca (Saskia Mulder) and Sam (MyAnna Buring) along with her new prodigy and risk taker Holly (Nora-Jane Noone).  When a cave tunnel collapses, leaving them with limited supplies and an unknown escape plan, They try to preserve as much as possible to find the way out, however, they encounter living creatures that are also hunting them.  Will they find the escape before they are hunted and killed by these unknown beings?

the descent juno

You know what The Descent reminded me of? Alien vs. Predators or something like that (you know, exploration and creatures).  Of course, we’re not dealing with aliens but man, this movie was INTENSE! The environment and atmosphere mixed with the tone and a good balance of noise and silence made this movie so creepy.  Plus, it wasn’t just a horror survival story, but also a story of friendship and revenge. The human nature is also a scary thing, my friends, and many of us do know that, right?

the descent rebecca sam

I don’t know any of the cast prior to seeing them here.  The cast of the six women were fantastic.  Most horror movies always have irritating characters and especially when in these type of movies, its just yelling and screaming and just retarded actions, but in this one, every single decision made by the characters and everything they did, emoted and reacted to was valid, made sense and they each balanced each other out perfectly.  The characters were so well thought out. In these claustrophobic horrors, they are our actual focus and they help every bit of it.

the descent sarah

Now, we can’t get through this review without talking a bit about the creatures which are crawly things.  I don’t want to talk too much about it because it is the surprise of how they look that might make this horror flick rise above other things.  Its not like sharks, you know. These creatures were not exactly scary-looking but the fact that they were so unpredictable and new.  Just like when we’re learning about a new species, right? We wonder about how they move and why they are attacking them.  Plus, its set in caves, therefore limited light so its always a mystery where they could pop out of, among all the isolated sounds around them here and there.

This pic is way brighter than it was in the movie itself...

This pic is way brighter than it was in the movie itself…

Honestly, all I want to say is that its f’ing awesome and that you should go checking it out! I’m not an expert in horror but I hope to understand it a bit more.  If most creatures/predators horror movies are this good, man, I’d be a very busy bee! This had everything done really well: atmosphere, tone, cast and creatures!

Thanks to Liam for suggesting it! Run on over and check out his blog if you haven’t yet!

Any other creatures horror movies you’d like to recommend (preferably on Netflix or somewhere I can stream). But if not, I’d take it anyways! I’ll just do a shopping spree in bargain bins and hope to find it 😉  I already did my first sweep yesterday and managed to get a good few for a decent price :)More recommendations please!

Oh and do you think I should follow through with The Descent 2 during this month?

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40 thoughts on “The Descent (2005)

  1. Great review, I love this film!
    Last year I went with a couple of friends to a ‘ghost tour’ in a cave, we watched this before we went hahaha big mistake! I’ve seen it a few times and it never gets old! 😀

    Some other horrors that are well worth checking out if you haven’t seen them already,
    Rec and Rec 2 (Spanish found footage films, very good and pretty scary…but avoid the third film at all costs it’s awful!)
    Creep (very similar creature to The Descent but a totally different film…another British horror)
    Silent House (the original film is best but the remake actually did a good job, so either film is worth watching!)

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    • Thanks Natasha! 🙂
      I just started exploring the world of horror, so I haven’t seen any of those. I’ve heard of REC since my boyfriend’s sister told me all about how awesome they were. Creep sounds really interesting 🙂 I think I’ve heard of Silent House…maybe you reviewed it?

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  2. This movie scared the bejesus out of me! I went to see it in theatres with my boyfriend and some friends. We’d just started dating, so I wanted to be all cool and not scared. And I was doing alright, but then the first time you really see the monsters I almost jumped out of my skin and spilled our extra large soda all over us!! Great review 🙂

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  3. I have to say that in the thousands of horror movies I have seen in my life, I’ve only actually been “scared” in a few of them. This was one of them. That part where she’s trapped in that tunnel and can’t move freaks me out just thinking of it. *shudders*

    Honestly, the sequel is not very good. It’s basically the exact same movie but you’ve already had the scare factor in the first one so nothing really works. For example – you know how she rises up out of the blood pool in your picture up there? Well – there’s an exact same scene in 2 where she rises up out of a pool of water covered in…………….. the creatures’ poo.

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    • I read a bit of the synopsis for the sequel and it sounded really meh. I’ll wait till after this month to look at it 🙂 That rising out of the blood part was one of my fave part in this one along with that creepy trapped part you mentioned 🙂

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  4. Nice review Kim. I didn’t care much for the ending, but everything before that was pretty freakin’ awesome. Scary, tense, and very thrilling: Just the way I like my horror movies.

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  5. I’m glad to hear you picked this up, it’s one of my most favorite horror movies! You’re definitely right about the characters reacting the way real people would to the situation…especially with the accident Juno did 😦 I like that actor a lot actually, she’s in this British series called “Hotel Babylon” (about the inner workings and staff of a 5-star hotel). It used to be on Netflix but it’s gone now 😦 The Descent was soooo good with their atmosphere….I didn’t realize it until I actually step foot in to a cave, but it’s made me very afraid of caves…haha.

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  6. This scared the life out of me even before thecreatures showed up! It so frightening. By the way they changed the ending for the aAmerican release. They added a happy ending. Oh and don’t watch the sequel

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  7. It’s a great film. As for the ending, the UK version (the one I originally saw) is much darker and downbeat than the ending for the US version. It’s not vastly different (an extra scene at the end), but enough to make a difference. You can find both endings on youtube.

    Sorry to say it, but I would avoid the sequel if I were you. It’s not very good.

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