The Descent: Revisited by Me

EDIT: For those of you who do not care for a rehash or look at all the letters and go, screw that and hit “Back”, I decided to bold the important paragraph which kinda says why I wrote all this shit.

Missed this originally and all the discussion about it probably for its resemblance to other mediocre flicks and the simple fact that the name did not grab me. I just watched this on TiVO sitting in my living room. I dunno if I was just ready for a decent horror flick or what, but I was completely sucked in for the entire thing. In retrospect, most everyone’s complaints in the original thread are valid, but as a package, the whole thing worked spectacularly for me. The torture flicks probably freak me out more, but I am so not entertained that I cannot watch them.

Includes spoilers, but just enough to get my point across:

This one was certainly more of the creepy horror variety and the setting helped. The seclusion and claustrophobia set the stage over a relatively extended period (as horror flicks go) when in a routine horror movie by that time I would have been rooting for someone to be offed. I found the scenes leading up to the cave in built tension well. Then the hopelessness and desperation of the others as they realized they were not in the cave they had planned sunk in to me. Not sure how far in, but the shit did not start going down until the leg break and then we see a glimpse of the underground dwellers. I was way passed feeling any sense of time elapsing by that point.

Every horror movie has the requisite telegraphed ‘jumps’ as this one did, but it was the seemingly normal shots that turned freaky that I liked. From the beginning with the husband wife, and child in the car, you sorta say, hey, isn’t he veering into the other lane a bit and find yourself simultaneously wondering when we get to find out he was screwing Juno and then whap. They panned back and you see two poles rather than one.

That and some of the other one-on-one scenes between characters were terribly gripping. Most of which involved some of horrible decision or consequence. Another thing was the gradual ramping up of the violence. It started with nothing and as circumstances changed the characters evolved and began to take more drastic measures. You could come to the conclusion that the transformations of a couple of them were too much, too fast, but based on the pacing and events taking place, I loved it. All of this led up to the final scene in which it was non-stop carnage and then ended with the exclamation point.

I really believe that your mood and state of mind have a large influence on how open you are when watching a film and how much you beat it to death analyzing while watching or, OTOH, determine to immerse yourself in it. I must have been wide the fuck open because it was one of the best creepy flicks I have seen in a long while. Especially since many of you previously stated that it needed to be watched with a group and it was just little ol’ me after putting the 2 kiddies in bed. Again, I can see where you can get hung up on cliches and the other negatives that were present, but, if done right, those same heavily borrowed elements can still make for a gripping film.

I don’t usually chat this much about movies as you guys do a great job and I end up echoing someone else’s thoughts. Also, there are not many films anymore that really surprise me as this one did. So, there ya’ go.

I watched this one by myself, and was really let down with how typical it was. It didn’t help that everything I’d read said that the movie was some sort of refreshing break from the typical horror movie schlock. I guess because the women didn’t run around screaming half-naked we’re supposed to overlook the cookie cutter plot and scares.

And Juno so did not deserve what she got. I actually felt bad for her.

Well, she screwed her husband, put all of their lives at risk and got them killed and actually killed one. After looking the person in the eye that did all of this to you immediately after all those horrific experiences, something had to give.

It did not reinvent the genre or anything, but I thought it used what may have been tired plot points in a refreshing way.

Which ending did you see? The American version had a very different ending than the European version…

Really? What are the differences? I saw the ending where she


gets out after hobbling the other gal, gets into the car, has a flashback and then blackout.

Glad the movie worked for you, Tyjenks, and I’m not here to poop in your grape nuts–only to say I watched it in similar circumstances as you, wanting it to work for me, and it didn’t.

As you say, alot of it has to do with mood & state of mind.

I see there is an “NC17” version out, which one is this?

— Alan

I actually just watched this for the second time last night with some friends who hadn’t seen it. The version we watched had the vastly superior original ending, which I hadn’t seen before, and fixed some of the problems I had with the movie.

After the second viewing, I liked this movie more, but I still had the same major problem: I thought it was really scary UNTIL the monsters showed up, when a really cool, tense survival movie became just another creature feature.

Pretty sure I saw the American ending that DoomMunky mentions. I did read elsewhere that the European version clarified more with its ending, but since I was, obviously, satisfied with the movie already, the ending was fine by me.

Crazy how people can see the exact same film and come away with such drastically different thoughts and conclusions. That’s why I rarely rely on reviewers or friends in recommending my movie choices. Peoples iz difernt.

I thought it was about as good as a CHUD movie gets. (Which is not very.)

Honestly, I am glad I watched it before reading stuff here. ; ) Otherwise, I probably would not have watched it. I think I will make that a rule with many games/movies/TV shows. Sample first, then consult Qt3. The other way seems to add bias to my decision making process and may even skew my attitude when I go in.

It is like Lost. Due to being slow, I caught up on all 3 Season’s in the last year and a half without reading threads here, watching ads on TV, or discussing the show with friends. Until I finished Season 3 and came here, I had no idea it had gone downhill. I enjoyed each episode and avoided post-game analysis that would color my view for future episodes, I guess.

Now I am genuinely curious as to how I could have liked this particular movie so much when I usually disdain cliched, tired gimmicks and plot points. Hmmm, maybe I will petition for some government money for a scientific study. I am sure we have paid for worse in the past.

It was a unique movie, all women, claustraphobia, gross out bloody scenes, a few jump-out-of-your-seat scenes, I liked it quite a bit…and I HATE saw, hostel, all those stupid friday the 13th, Freddy, etc, etc. movies.

I saw the Euro version before I even knew they were planning on re-releasing it here in the States. I had no expectations going in, so I was pleasantly surprised. That said, it seems as if the US version ends on a far more upbeat note.

Unless I’m mis-remembering, her escape is all just a fantasy she has as she’s dying in the cave

Okay, now I’m confused. The ending I saw had two characters conversing at a cafe, and as the female character left, her eyes shone in a manner that indicated she was one of the creatures, or infected by them, or some bullshit like that. This was on one of the movie channels. Did they cut an entirely new ending, or what?

That’s The Cave, this thread is about The Descent.

I like both of them.

Heh yeah that’s The Cave you’re talking about (which is merely just… meh). It does have Lena Headley in it though.

— Alan

I quite liked The Descent. Maybe not very original but I thought it was well executed throughout with some really good setpieces, well done jump scares, and a nice sense of dread and suspense throughout.


Yeah, that’s exactly what happened. The ending of the American film is just the fantasy. She snaps back to reality as she is being taken down by the creatures.

A much more satisfying ending rather than the retarded doesn’t make any sense ending of the US edition.

At one point you could find the ending on YouTube. Not sure if that’s still true.

I did like the movie a lot though. Mainly because the people in the horror movie fought back. Sure, they did stupid things and had stupid characters, but they all fought back instead of just pretending it’s not happening and being gutted easily enough.

Yum, now I wanna see this again.

Favorite moment: When the main gal is lying in the pool of blood and the creature steps over her head, dragging his foot over the top of her head.

GAODKOW! Just thinking about it again makes me shiver and thrill. There was a visceral tactility to this movie that I’m not used to. Some focus on the body and how it behaves when pushed to the limit, or breaks down. The other woman whose hand gets abraded by the cable when they’re going across that chasm.

Good stuff.

There were two retarded cave diving monster movies last year? What, did somebody lose a bet?