The Descent: Part 2 (2010)
Oh. So this is why they had to cut the ending when they did. So they could make a sequel. I have to admit that I didn’t realize they had released a sequel, despite (or possibly because of?) how much I loved the first film. It felt complete to me, so I never saw any need for a sequel. But I guess it makes sense. Why not try to capitalize on your success?
Of course, from what I can tell, this was ultimately a direct-to-video release, so I guess they didn’t do such a great job capitalizing on it. But it wasn’t all bad. It wasn’t anywhere near as intensely scary and engrossing as the first one, but it was entertaining throughout. And much bloodier (if you can believe that), so if you’re into that kind of thing…
It seems like the production value was a bit greater for this movie. Normally I wouldn’t think that to be a bad thing, but in this case it meant the caves were brighter and details were easier to see, which actually made me feel less immersed in the story. The first movie focuses so well on the characters and their heightened emotions while the second is more focused on showing off how gruesome and horrifying the creatures are. The effect is okay, but means the movie takes on a much different tone. It was more horrific, but less engrossing…more action-packed but less edge-of-your-seat excitement.
The acting was fine, but with the focus on the creatures rather than the characters, it was hard to relate to anyone in particular so I wasn’t emotionally invested in anyone’s survival. (Sort of spoilers ahead?) Except maybe Sarah, who of course was the only known survivor from the first film’s spelunking trip gone wrong. Her character was just as badass as before, though a bit more…deranged (but, y’know, acceptably so after what she’d been through?).
Something the first one had going for it that was lost in the sequel is an all-female cast — and not just a bunch of whining damsels in distress, but smart, capable females fighting for their lives. That’s rare in any film genre, but especially so in horror, and it was a little sad to see a more balanced cast in this one. Anyway, I probably would have liked these better as unrelated movies about similar horrors, but this isn’t the worst sequel I’ve ever watched.