The Descent
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A group of close female friends on a yearly adventure vacation find themselves trapped and hunted in a series of caves by an unknown force that lurks in the shadows in The Descent, the second horror feature from Dog Soldiers writer/director Neil Marshall. After suffering a devastating car crash one year before, Sarah (Shauna Macdonald) is lured to the States with her friend Beth (Alex Reid) to a special spelunking trip by the fearless Juno (Natalie Mendoza), who abruptly fled from the U.K. after Sarah's accident. Along with two old friends and a new acquaintance of Juno's, the group… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 85%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Marshall could very well be the Caravaggio of the B-movie."
‑ Sarah Lilleyman, TIME Magazine
"For my money, [the] first 20 or so minutes are the best in the film. Once the real adventure gets underway in the cave, things get less interesting."
‑ Claudia Puig, USA Today
"Super-scary and vicious, both psychologically and physically, this cleverly produced chill-ride is edgy British horror at its very best."
‑ Alan Jones, Radio Times
"Director Marshall has obviously kept his DVD player spinning for days studying all of the classics and simply taking everything he needed like a Vanilla Ice "Under Pressure""
‑ Brian Holcomb, Kinetofilm
"It's nasty, unpleasant and sadistic but brutally efficient and undeniably effective."
‑ Jim Lane, Sacramento News & Review
"This intermittently effective UK horror thriller carefully establishes the psychological relationships among the women, then squanders this calibrated and generally plausible setup with a series of crude, implausible, and scattershot horror effects."
‑ Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
"While the movie has wonderful moments of unmotivated tension that make sure we're quite ill at ease from the beginning, it's also got a few too many of the kind of cheap boo-scares that indicate a director not fully trusting his grip on you."
‑ Geoff Pevere, Toronto Star
"Tense, gory and masterfully malevolent."
‑ , Total Film
"Blank screamers, fastidiously amplified "boos," and the most confused intimations of lesbianism since High Tension"
‑ Fernando F. Croce, CinePassion
"[Writer-director Neil] Marshall makes real movies, not just schlockfests designed to sate the lusts of gore-lovers (although there is plenty of gore, too)."
‑ Steve Biodrowski, Cinefantastique
"The Descent sustains a level of intensity that most horror films can barely muster for five minutes."
‑ Scott Tobias, AV Club
"Tight shots of women desperately wriggling through worm holes or teetering on a ledge overlooking an abyss create a claustrophobic effect, one that leaves the characters gasping for air and the audience breathing shallower."
‑ Judy Chia Hui Hsu, Seattle Times
"Although Neil Marshall's attempt to justify the U.S. ending is admirable, the original ending is the only way out - providing a chilling bookend to a motif and suggesting what seems like cerulean-tinged peace is actually the solitary solace of madness."
‑ Nick Rogers,
"The ensuing carnage is ample but not gratuitous; every arterial spray and bone crack makes a point."
‑ Tom Meek, Boston Phoenix
"Where the film exceeds 'Dog Soldiers' is toward the end, as Sarah comes to grips with what it will take to survive her ordeal and gets in touch with her feral side."
‑ Lucius Gore, ESplatter
More reviews for The Descent on Rotten Tomatoes

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