Horror Movie Review: "The Cave"
Plot: When a group of professional cave explorers go for a deep sea ocean dive to explore a mysterious cave, the cave collapses during the expedition, leaving the team stranded in the underwater cavern, and completely unaware of the bloodthirsty creatures that lurk within it.
Review:I have to admit going into "The Cave" I didn't expect much. In fact I didn't expect anything to be honest. But I don't know whether it was my low expectations or whatever but I really liked this movie. In "The Cave" a group of men disappear in a Cave system thats collapsed. After the collapse it's suggested that "something" claimed their lives. Fast forward to present day, a group of cavers played by Eddie Cibrian, Morris Chestnut, Cole Hauser, Daniel Day Kim, Piper Perabo, and Rick Ravenello along with two doctors one of which played by the very attractive Lena Headey are sent in to explore this new found cave system. Totally unaware of the something that lies within it. I've heard some people compare "The Cave" to "Pitch Black" which is an extreme put down. "Pitch Black" for the mildly entertaining movie it was was boring as hell compared to "The Cave" which after about 20 minutes or so of the main characters arriving at the cave system and setting up shop, switches gears quickly when one of the group members is attacked in a scene where we get a brief quick glances of one of the cave dwelling monsters. The monsters themselves aren't overddone or shown too much and while some horror fans may hate these *less is more* patterned movies this formula works in "The Cave".
Mainly because these monsters are f*cking scary even when they aren't shown fully because we get glimpses of their long razor like teeth, and the films writers Michael Steinberg and Tegan West did a fantastic job of picking the right moments when they would show up on screen. The stars of the movie are really the monsters along with Eddie Cibrian, Morris Chestnut, and Cole Hauser and Lena Headey who does her best to steal the show a tad bit with her acting rather than being the comic relief with funny one-liners, which is rare in horror movies nowadays. In fact in this movie there isn't that one comic relief character who says something funny during those suspenseful moments,which more so helped me enjoy this film since it kept with the serious tone of things throughout. After one of their group members is killed and their lead caver played by Cole Hauser is bitten,their course of action now becomes to escape the cave rather than continue the expedition. Problem is Hausers character is infected and slowly changing which creates mistrust amongst his fellow cavers since hes the one who can lead them out. Not to mention the cave monsters which become more and more aggresive in their attacks as the film wears on. The scenes where they attack are very well done and not often predictable which is another thing I liked about the movie.
Piper Perabo and Eddie Cibrians characters are involved in 2 of the most intense of the monster attack scenes and overall two of the most enjoyable parts of the film. So whats the origins of these creatures and what do these creatures look like?One theory is tossed out connecting them to the films tagline "Beneath Hell Lies The Cave" but their real origins are explained early on in the movie after Hausers character is bitten. I won't give away too much about how they look except that they're original enough in design to be separated from your standard horror movie monster. I also liked the fact that we got more and more full looks at them as the movie went on.
In the very early going they're kept hidden in the shadows but are revealed more and more until we finally get to see them fully in the films exciting climax. "The Cave" also keeps you guessing in alot of areas as to who will live and who will die. I guarantee you might be able predict a few of the deaths but not all of them…atleast I couldn't. Theres a few subplots one of which involving Cibrian and Hausers characters which further enhances the overall story and a love story subplot between Cibrian and Lena Headey and Piper Perabo which are all briefly hinted at but never materialize fully for a number of different reasons.
Pros: Nice creature FX,intense and suspenseful scenes galore in this movie,good acting by everyone, and for a movie like this the storyline was pretty meaty.
Cons: Some of the early creature sequences were a bit choppy and during the attacks the scenes cut so fast you can barely see whats happening but being that "The Cave" was rated PG 13, I think some scenes of blood may have been trimmed thus contributing to the moderately choppy looking attack scenes so we'll see when the dvd comes out. The twist ending was a coin flip. I could've done without it but it wasn't that bad… but it wasn't necessarily a great idea either.
Overall: Go check this out, I think you'll be very surprised at how good it is for a PG-13 creature/actioneer.