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The Descent (2005)

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A caving expedition goes horribly wrong, as the explorers become trapped and ultimately pursued by a strange breed of predators.

Director:

Neil Marshall

Writer:

Neil Marshall
Popularity
1,414 ( 306)
8 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Shauna Macdonald ... Sarah
Natalie Mendoza ... Juno
Alex Reid ... Beth
Saskia Mulder ... Rebecca
MyAnna Buring ... Sam
Nora-Jane Noone ... Holly
Oliver Milburn ... Paul
Molly Kayll Molly Kayll ... Jessica
Craig Conway ... Crawler - Scar
Leslie Simpson Leslie Simpson ... Crawler
Mark Cronfield Mark Cronfield ... Crawler
Stephen Lamb Stephen Lamb ... Crawler (as Steve Lamb)
Catherine Dyson Catherine Dyson ... Crawler
Julie Ellis Julie Ellis ... Crawler
Sophie Trott Sophie Trott ... Crawler
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Storyline

A woman goes on vacation with her friends after her husband and daughter encounter a tragic accident. One year later she goes hiking with her friends and they get trapped in the cave. With a lack of supply, they struggle to survive and they meet strange blood thirsty creatures. Written by Lien Dang

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Face Your Deepest Fear See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence/gore and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 August 2006 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Descent See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

£3,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£570,850 (United Kingdom), 10 July 2005, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,911,330, 6 August 2006, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$26,024,456

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$57,029,609
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (original unrated cut)

Sound Mix:

DTS (US prints)| Dolby Digital EX

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

No real caves appear anywhere in film. They were all sets built at Pinewood Studios, London created by production designer Simon Bowles. See more »

Goofs

(at around 43 mins) While the rock climbing scenes in this movie are technically an order of magnitude better than most Hollywood attempts, when Juno follows across the first chasm, she wouldn't have bothered to re-rack the cams she was collecting to the gear loops on her harness. Completely unclipping them from the rope is both unnecessarily energy expending and dangerous, since she could easily drop a free cam into the abyss below. Most climbers faced with following a leader on a roof like that would simply disengage the cam from the rock and let it slide safely down the rope where it would collect by the climber's harness for later racking. See more »

Quotes

Beth: [trapped after a cave-in] You put in a flight-plan, right? If we don't report in they'll come looking for us.
Rebecca: That's how it's supposed to work, except I put in a flight-plan for Boreham Caverns and this isn't Boreham Caverns, is it Juno?
Beth: We're in the wrong fucking cave!
Juno: Holly was right! Boreham Caverns was a tourist trap!
Holly: Don't try and pin this fucking shit on me!
Rebecca: This is not caving, this is an ego-trip.
Sam: Where are we?
Juno: It hasn't got a name. It's a new system. I wanted us all to discover it! No ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The creature's snarling sound can be heard at the end of the credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

In the alternate version of the movie, Sarah escapes the cave and runs to her car. She drives down the road and stops. After vomiting out the window, she sits up and Juno, whose face is streaked with blood, is sitting right beside her. Sarah screams and the camera cuts to the credits. See more »

Connections

References Apocalypse Now (1979) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Masterful horror film. Spoiler free review
12 July 2005 | by YoukilledmypineSee all my reviews

If nightmare inducing horror is not your bag then the less you know about The Descent the better. Geordie writer-director Neil Marshall has delivered an accomplished, well acted, out and out horror movie that comes as much of a pleasant surprise as his first major feature Dog Soldiers did back in 2002. Shot in a mere 7 weeks The Descent sees a sextet of undeniably attractive action women leaping headfirst into an Appalachian potholing adventure that goes wrong so quickly you are left wondering if any one of them will survive, let alone ever see daylight again.

There are comparisons to be drawn to Marshall's 'Soldiers of course - again the story is stark and wonderfully economic. Again there is group of six people, predominantly one sex accompanied with a lurking, ominous threat and again there are more nods to popular film culture than you probably realise. The Descent however has a sense of humour that is suitably pitch black.

Long before the cave appears we play witness to a traumatic event that underlies the plot and serves to both unite and tear apart relationships in equal measure. Mostly affected are fragile Sarah and physically strong Juno, an adrenaline junkie who leads the group further and further beneath the ground. No time is wasted in recreating the primal feel of crawling through tunnels with hard hats scraping the dust from the rocks, choking and inducing paranoia all the way as it lingers in the stale, torchlit air. It's here Marshall gets a little inventive. Playing with various different lighting techniques our heroines become colour coded through scenes via glow-sticks, flashlights and video camera. Sounds echo when visuals are briefly lost and deliciously bone crunching they are too. Events escalate quickly and the whole ride becomes what can only be described as a non-stop relentless assault on the senses that will demand repeated viewing.

The only thing that will ruin this movie for you is word of mouth, which ironically is exactly what this film will need to become commercially viable. But the less you know, the more you will enjoy it. Have fun spotting references to Carrie and Apocalypse Now by all means, but don't be fooled into thinking this is a mere standard entry into the much saturated genre-movie staple. The Descent will rank as one of the most unashamedly terrifying British films ever made. It was made by people that love good cinema, and it shows. The Descent was made before The Cave, and now has an alternate ending for new audiences.


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