I first saw Neil Marshall's The Descent well before it showed up at the Sundance Film Festival (where I saw it for a third time), and about nine months before it finally opened in American theaters -- yesterday! For the better part of a year I've been doing all I can to share my loud and mega-geekish enthusiasm for the film, and now it seems that 4 out of 5 film critics agree: This movie rocks, period, and is certainly one of the finest horror flicks in quite some time.

So to celebrate the movie's $3.5 million opening day haul (meh, shoulda been more), I offer a handily bullet-pointed collection of The Descent triviata. If you've been following the flick forever, very little of this will be news to you, so consider this mainly for the newcomers...

  • Yes, the American cut of the film has a different ending than the UK version. It's more of an early snip than an alternate sequence, but you can decide for yourself which ending you prefer. (I like the original one.)
  • Made for under $7 million, the flick's already made that much in Spain, France, and the UK alone.
  • The Descent opened in the UK on July 8th, 2005, one day after the horrific subway bombings in London.
  • Lionsgate bought the U.S. rights two weeks prior to the UK premiere.
  • The entire cave system is man-made. There were no interior cave shoots.
  • Lionsgate's memorable Descent poster is inspired by an old Dali photograph, one that was previously used in the Silence of the Lambs poster.
  • The Descent played more than 20 film festivals, including Venice, Brussels and Sundance. (And Philly! Woo-hoo!)
  • Despite buying U.S. rights in June of 2005, Lionsgate opted to hold the movie until August of 2006, mainly because of a Sony release called The Cave, which was not only similar in plot to The Descent, but a very rotten movie, too.
  • Another piece of spelunk-horror known as The Cavern (aka WIthIN) was sitting on a shelf somewhere, so Sony decided to drop that one onto DVD shelves just last week, coincidentally enough.
  • Although Lionsgate is surely planning to deliver a fantastic R1 DVD release, those with multi-region capability might want to invest in this fantastic R2 release from Pathé. Should LG present any new goodies on their release, I'll gladly drop the 15 bucks on that one too.
  • I promise this will be my very last post on The Descent ... at least until that R1 DVD is announced. Oooh, and the 2-disc mega-set in 2008. That'll be cool too! (And there's already talk of a sequel!)
categories Features, Cinematical