the cave | bruce hunt | michael steinberg | tegan west | piper perabo | morris chestnut | cole hauser | action | adventure | thriller | united states | germany | romania | eddie cibrian | lena headey | monster | monsters | creature | rick ravanello | daniel dae kim
Film: The Cave
Director: Bruce Hunt
Writer: Michael Steinberg and Tegan West
Starring: Piper Perabo, Morris Chestnut and Cole Hauser
This film came out around the time that The Descent did, which is very similar in premise of a group going into an unexplored cave and making a discovery about something that is in there. The official synopsis for this film is bloodthirsty creatures await a pack of divers who become trapped in an underwater cave network.
Now I had seen this film right around the time that it came out and I enjoyed it. After my second watch, I still do and I like that despite it coming out at the same time as The Descent, they are vastly different films. This one we get some back-story to start off. We have a group that enters a church and this is during the Cold War. They go into the cave and are attacked by something. The film then shifts thirty years forward into present time. It is there that during an excavation, the church and cave is found again.
Dr. Nicolai (Marcel Iures) reaches out to the best team at underwater exploration of caves is contacted about mapping out this one. It is led by Jack McAllister (Cole Hauser) and his brother Tyler (Eddie Cibrian). Also on their team is Top Buchanan (Morris Chestnut), Charlie (Piper Perabo), Briggs (Rick Ravanello) and Strode (Kieran Darcy-Smith). It is interesting as the dynamic this creates for later in the film is that Jack is a bit of a control freak. He chooses Briggs over his brother for good reason to start the first pass when they get into the cave. Later in the film, he is questioned by Charlie when he knows she is the best free wall climber. The latter has reasoning behind it though.
Joining them on this is a doctor, Kathryn Jennings (Lena Headey), who is trying to study the organisms that are found within this isolated ecosystem. She also has a camera man with her to help document everything. His name is Alex Kim (Daniel Dae Kim). This group gets trapped and needs to find a way out, but they don’t know where any of the paths lead. As they are picked off one by one as they make their way through.
Much like the synopsis states, this film is similar to The Descent in that there are bloodthirsty monsters that are found in this cave as well. There is something different about them that I liked. I won’t give away the twist on it. The monsters are well done though. They are CGI at some points, but it doesn’t look bad, so I don’t really have any issues there. I do believe that some of them are done practically as well which was good. There is also a parasite in the cave that is infecting all of the wildlife. I like that there are undiscovered animals as realistically, that is something that would happen being isolated like they are. Things that are infected with this have a cool look to them.
Despite this film having a solid cast of actors, it was lacking a bit for me. Hauser has trouble being a good guy. He is a great bad guy and I think it is his natural look. Now he does have a few moments in this film when he is mean and that fit. It was the rest of the film that I just wasn’t a fan. Cibrian has a good look to him, but I wasn’t impressed with his performance. Chestnut was solid as was Headey. Many know her from Game of Thrones, but she is much nicer in this film. Perabo and the rest of the cast were fine to round out the cast.
The editing of the film was good. The film does move along and build tension as it goes. Also coupling with this was the score of the film. It really didn’t stand out, but it didn’t take me out of any scenes. I think it fit for what it needed to do. I did have issues with the ending as it went the typical horror Hollywood ending. It also has that twist at the end that leaves it open for a possible sequel that never came.
With that said, I found this film to be enjoyable. My thought is that this film is above average. Coming out when it did, it will forever be compared to The Descent, but it isn’t on that level of a film. It has an interesting back-story of a church being built over a cave to protect it. These explorers go in and are immediately trapped, needing to find a way out. The acting is good for the most part. The creatures I thought looked good, being a combination of CGI and practical. This one though does have an ending that I was a fan of and in the middle of it I got slightly bored. The editing was good though and the soundtrack fit. If you have to choose, go see The Descent, but this film I did find to be above average still.
My Rating: 7 out of 10