Thursday, September 14, 2006

Bat-boy Unleashed: The Cave


It's a well known fact that sci-fi movies have to have certain traits.

The good guy is always considered, by many, to be inadequate.

The bad guy--or just the not so great guy--is a sleazeball.

The girl is too attractive for her job and manages to "die" at least once.

Nothing is what it seems...or is it?

And there will always be a "shocker" at the end (the whole 'monster isn't dead yet' thing)

Movie execs know that we know this. So why do they keep making the same movies?

Because......money. Yeah, that's some good English right there.

So I Netflixed (now that's a friggin' word for Webster) "The Cave" knowing full well what I was getting myself into.

This underground adventure stars Cole Hauser (Pitch Black) who is making a name for himself in the "why exactly are you in this" category of films. He has a natural look to him, sorta like McConaughey, that makes you think he's really deep.

Cole plays Jack, leader of an extreme team of divers who take on the most inhospitable places on Earth...all in the name of science.

His brother, Eddie Cibrian (Third Watch) is a bit miffed at how his older brother treats him, but can't give up the life he loves.

Throw in a few disposables and an attractive biologist named Kathryn (Lena Heady from....stuff) and you have the makings of a sci-fi marvel.

The "Cave" in question is in Romania, a place known for its illustrious caverns (I'm totally serious). It appears an ancient church was buried in a rock slide, sealing the area from the effects of time. Anything inside would be an evolutionary marvel.

Once inside, however, the team is sealed off from the real world and hunted by mysterious creatures that look kinda like an Alien with a tumor.

But, as always, the real enemy is within.

Eventually, anyways. It's a parasite (this is not a spoiler. It's in the freakin' trailer). It mutates its host to fit the particular biome, or something to that effect.

So the team is killed off, slowly but surely, until they have a last stand.

And yes, someone is infected and saves the rest in a noble sacrifice.

And yes, at the end, things "aren't as they seem."

To tell you the truth, I wasn't that dissappointed by the movie. It followed the sci-fi template almost to a T, and the acting ain't terrible (though it's not even in the same time zone as 'good').

Cole plays a somewhat single-minded leader very well, and Eddie...well, he sure was great on "Third Watch".

The effects aren't that bad either. The creatures, while not of the most unique vision, come across well. The director knew enough to reveal them slowly, and only in flashes of light.

I've always hated it when, in a monster movie, the monster is shown completely right off the bat (Yeah, Peter Jackson, the scene with Shelob sucked like a starving vampire).

The music is really my biggest criticism. Throughout the film, and I mean THROUGHOUT, a creepy violin scratches at your ear, as if to say: SOMETHING BAD IS GOING TO HAPPEN...EVENTUALLY!

Even when all that you see is a helicopter bringing in the team, the violin is gettin' a workout. It doesn't build tension when you do it ALL THE TIME.

At the end of the movie, which is cheap by the way, you will feel rather unfulfilled, as though you ate a burritto and realized, with the last bite, there was no salsa.

I'll give this movie a weekend-spelunking-with-Lena Heady-who-is-pretty-cute. That's all I have time for.

I just want to add in a little phrase I heard today, one which would make a far more intersting movie:

Vampirates.

Doesn't it just blow your mind?

1 comment:

Sarah said...

The reason I enjoy your writing: your similies..

"sucked like a starving vampire."

Works for me!