Fear Runs Deep…Revenge Runs Deeper
A sequel to the highly successful and critically acclaimed 2005 film, The Descent Part 2 shows us what happened in the days following the events of the original film. Opting to forget the original British ending of the first film, this film goes with the alternate ending showing Sarah escape the cave. Once she’s cleaned up in the hospital two local Sheriffs force Sarah to take them back to the caves to find her missing friends, more importantly find Juno. Accompanying the three of them is a team of expert cave divers. Will they be able to unravel the mystery of the ferocious cave dwellers? Will they be able to find Juno? Will they be able to survive it all?
The original Descent is easily one of the best horror movies that has been made in the last 10 years. Not only did it have the similar stalking effect that Aliens was famous for, it took us deep into the world of Claustrophobia. It’s not that often that I get uncomfortable watching films but I felt myself gripping the corners of my chair as I watched the first film, and most of the time never had anything to do with the monsters themselves.
This film tried to build off of everything the original had going for it. Unfortunately they tried to improve on all the wrong elements. The claustrophobia was there but John Harris was ineffective in recreating some of the more “tight” scenes that Neil Marshall was able to use to make the film more intense. I wasn’t nearly as uncomfortable watching this film as I was the first. Another element was the gore. The original didn’t have much of it. What gore was there seemed to be perfect for the film. It wasn’t overly done to take away attention of the horror going on around it but it wasn’t non-existent in a movie that needed some to show the viciousness of the creatures. Jon Harris figured it was a better idea to add gore to every single death that occurred in the film. It became a played out trick almost immediately. And the worst part is. Most of the deaths were the exact same thing.
One aspect I really loved about the first film was that you actually cared about all the characters. The original Descent did a great job of introducing the girls and none of the characters were cheesy. You felt genuinely bad everytime one of them met their demise. In this film there were characters you hated and there were characters you didn’t even care about. As the film progressed you were able to predict which ones were going to die and it quickly became apparent that most of them were there only to increase the body count.
I really tried hard not to compare this film to the first. With the exception of the two returning cast members, it was done by an entirely different team. Neil Marshall set a very high bar with his film that I knew going into this one wasn’t going to be met. Marshall didn’t need to rely on the same tricks throughout the movie to keep you on your toes. Harris on the other hand found one particular thing that worked and used it so much that the horse was beyond dead at the end of the film. Once you see this movie you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about.
In the end this movie wasn’t completely terrible. I think my expectations were a little too high coming into it because the first film was that good. I was definitely entertained while watching this film but it definitely came off rather elementary compared to its predecessor. I think it’s a safe watch for those that were really into the original but you should come to terms going into it that it’s not going to be as good.