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STUDIO:
Lionsgate
MSRP: $21.49
RATED:
Not rated
RUNNING
TIME:
94 minutes
SPECIAL

FEATURES:
- Seleted scenes
- Making-of featurette
- Storyboard gallery
- Commentary by director Ron Harris and actresses Shauna MacDonald, Krysten Cumming and Anna Skellern


The
Pitch


The C.H.U.D.s get another helping of surface folk.

The Humans

Shauna MacDonald, Michael J. Reynolds, Jessika Williams, Douglas Hodge, Joshua Dallas, Anna Skellern, Gavan O’Herlihy, Natalie Mendoza.

The
Nutshell


Two days after the disappearance of the six female spelunkers from the first film, including Sarah (MacDonald), in an unexplored cave in the Appalachian Mountains, a search and rescue effort is underway.  When Sarah
emerges as the lone survivor and with no memory of the horrors from which she escaped, she leads another team down into the cave to try to find her friends.  The things that killed her friends are of course waiting there for them.



“Please…need lift…out of this movie…”. 



The Lowdown

First of all, the obvious question: is Descent 2 as good as the original?  No.  Is it worth seeing?  Marginally, yes.  Even though it’s basically a retread of Marshall’s innovative original that lacks any of the nuance, claustrophobia or chemistry of the first film.  Sarah’s amnesia from shock is the way-too-big of a MacGuffin that makes this outing possible.  Despite her ordeal, one might think that cannibalistic humanoid underground dwellers (of a different variety here), might be the kind of things that stick with someone for a little while.  But since she can’t remember, we get basically a carbon copy of the first film, with a new cast of characters, most about whom we really don’t care. 



“What did you find?”
“Some weird bullshit about a witch named Blair.”
“Why am I getting carsick looking at it?”



Once the rescuers are underground, the exact same situation develops: they’re cut off from the surface by a cave in and then have to try to survive the creatures that prowl the darkness.  The kills mostly echo the first film, for both human and creature.  A major downer though is that there are too many cheap jump scares thrown in.  Furthermore, they’re set up like a row of dominoes; so there isn’t even that much jump to them.  First-time director, Jon Harris, who edited the first film, runs Marshall’s playbook mostly to predictability.  But the film is competently shot and although Harris adds absolutely nothing original, he doesn’t screw the pooch.  So there’s that at least.  There are two big surprises, including a twist ending.  This would be worth a rent at best if you liked the first film.  Just don’t expect much in the way of innovation.



Weirdest bondage threesome ever…



The
Package


Harris keeps the atmosphere from the first film, so there’s a lot of darkness that’s lit pretty well and the camerawork is good, so the film looks fine.  Sound is also suitably good, although it gets a little low at times.  There are about 10 minutes of deleted scenes, a couple of which, would have added even the littlest bit of flavor to some of the characters, and one badly boilerplate dream sequence scare.  There is a pretty substantial 25-minute making of featurette, seven minutes of storyboards and a commentary by Harris, MacDonald and fellow actresses Krysten Cumming and Anna Skellern to round out things.


5.9 out of 10