Sunday, August 06, 2006

My Favorite Movie of the Summer So Far...The Descent.

Over the last four or five years, people have claimed that horror movies have made a come back. If someone had told me that back then I would've been pretty thrilled. For awhile horror movies were relegated to straight to video releases. Well, the horror movie is back, and I haven't been that pleased. The problem is that with the Saw series, Cabin Fever, and Hostel, they haven't been scary movies, but movie you should be scared to see. The movies have been so set on clubbing the audience with gruesome images that the movies become nothing more than a mind numbing effort with no real frights. There needs to be a balance between the gore and the scare. The Descent rides the line to near perfection.

The Descent is a British horror movie that follows six female friends who have a need to find thrills. They meet to go exploring a cave in the Appalachia Mountains. Our heroine of the group is a woman who lost her husband and daughter in a car accident a year ago. She's reluctant to come, but her friends think this is something that would be good for her. The get back on the horse kind of thinking. As with all horror movies, things go wrong once they enter the cave, and they become trapped with creatures who have adapted to live miles underground.

The great thing about this movie is that before the creatures even show up the tension has been ratcheted up with light and shadows, things possibly seen, and the confusion and claustrophobia of exploring a cave that the reveal of the creatures is almost a release. Yes there are many horror movie conventions, but the director employs them so well that they are effective. This is what I expect in a horror movie, and I hope more like this are to follow.

No comments: