A team of mercenaries under the command of hard-charging war veteran Mack (Gooding Jr.), are contracted by a mysterious CIA operative named Elissa (Cruz) to rescue a scientist (Perlman) working on an archeological discovery deep under the Middle Eastern desert. With the help of a mysterious priest (Rollins), Mack and his team soon discover the true secret of what lies beneath the sands. A secret that has been protected for thousands of years. A secret that is not of this EarthWritten by
THE DEVIL'S TOMB by SAMPSON 411 When you watch an independent film, you at least know what you're getting in for. Here, The Devil's Tomb is low budget, but most of it's success at the rental store is going to come as a result of its "name" actors and its impressive DVD art work. While it had it's moments (a rare few of them), in general, this was a movie that was destined for the Sci-Fi Channel, but was somehow rescued to the rental store shelves. 5.0/10 stars, at best (anything under 5.0 stars being totally unwatchable for me -- so this is borderline).
The story follows an elite military unit as it goes underground, into an underground laboratory to retrieve a civilian after some unknown biological/radiological/chemical disaster. What the team discovers, is that something ancient and sinister has been unleashed, and it's up to them to make certain the evil can't escape into the world (while figuring out a way to survive said evil at the same time).
To be fair, Cuba Gooding, Jr. is the MAN. His performance rocks, as does his acting. However, the film's dialogue and delivery by his fellow cast members is less than memorable. One couldn't use the "f-bomb" more than the actors do, even if being promised a billion dollars at day's end. Why do writers think that using the f-bomb someone makes for good drama? When have you ever heard two people talking in real life like this? It makes the dialogue feel forced. People don't always say things trying to sound "cool," and those who do sound like idiots (as do actors saying these things as they try to sound "cool").
Although the concept seemed new, it felt old. Actors running around in a "closed" building makes for a cheap film, but a very stale movie. Guns, blood and cheap special effects do not a good movie make (but they apparently make money, considering it was on the Blockbuster shelf as a "best seller" – go figure, eh. Just goes to show that we all have different tastes).
The visual feel of the movie is constant – too light for the actors to need their ever constant flash lights, and too clear to be anything but poorly utilized digital cameras. No grit. No texture. Not very visually compelling.
If you've seen Resident Evil, you've seen a far better version of this film. Rent it if you must, but just watch it with lowered expectations, or you'll want to gouge your eyes out. Watch it looking to just have a good two-hours free of thought or care, then you're set.
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