Friday, February 25, 2011

SANCTUM (2011) - Making money off James Cameron's name


If you live anywhere in the US of A, chances are you've been bombarded by commercials and trailers for Sanctum. If this were any other movie, I guess it'd be fine, since big movies tend to get their stuff plastered all over TV anyways, but Sanctum's ad blitz was different. Right from the beginning, your puny, peasant brain is force fed huge amounts of James Cameron's name every five seconds or so. "From executive producer James Cameron... / The director of Titanic and Avatar... / The guy with a hard on for 3D... / CONVINCED YET?..." This is unfortunate, since I first saw this trailer and said to myself this might be some sort of spiritual successor to one of my favorite movies of all time, The Abyss. It's too bad James Cameron pretty much just stuck his name on the trailers to get people to pay up the $20 or whatever those ridiculous 3D movie tickets cost these days to watch this stinker.

James Franco called. He wants his climbing shit back.
Frank McGuire (Richard Roxburgh) is an veteran cave explorer, off on an expedition in Papua New Guinea. His son Josh (Rhys Wakefield) flies out alongside his dad's friend and money supplier Carl (Ioan Gruffudd) to meet up with his father. They're also accompanied by Carl's girlfriend, Victoria, who is apparently just there for eye candy since I can't recall a single contribution she makes to further the plot throughout the entire movie. In any case, the team has already set up a camp inside the unexplored cave, complete with video and phone communications and all those other gizmos that always tend to break when a catastrophe occurs.
"Josh is a pretty cool guy. He climbs the caves and doesn't afraid of drowning."
While everyone gets settled in and ready for the dive, Frank and his partner Judes go off by themselves to check out an unexplored section. Of course, they just broke the #1 rule of survival movies: don't separate yourself from the group. Sure enough, while making their way back, the air hose on Judes' scuba gear breaks, and she drowns. Back at base camp, Josh throws a hissy fit, saying that Frank could've done more to save her, proving what an ignorant little tard Josh really is. The team decides to pack up and leave, when all of a sudden (duh?) a tropical cyclone breaks out over the island, flooding the caves with rain water, and forcing the group to have to find a way out of the massive caves before their air runs out.

Yo, that's a big ass cave tho...
It's always worrying when you watch a movie and you recognize one of the stars but cant remember what the hell they've been in or you realize you have no idea what their name is. Ioan Gruffud (how the hell do you pronounce that anyway?) was in the Fantastic Four movie, and after you watch Sanctum, it'll be perfectly clear to see why he hasn't been cast in anything else you might have seen. He over acts in every single scene, he generally comes off as an asshole, and tries hard but fails at being menacing. It's like rubbing your eyeballs on a cheesegrater. That's how bad he is in this. Wakefield and Roxburgh are also pretty unknown, but at least they do a good job of portraying the son and father who share equal parts disdain and respect for each other. Everyone else is mediocre. This really is no surprise: people who watch Sanctum are doing it because of the 3D (which is very well done actually), but the characters are forgettable and boring.

I was rooting for the cave to take them all out. True story.
Sanctum is a gimmick movie, plain and simple. If you want to see it, watch it in theaters while you still can. If it wasn't for the 3D action sequences, this thing would have gone straight to DVD, sharing the shelves with other great classics like Snakes on a Train and Transmorphers. If 3D is not your thing, don't bother.

TL;DR - cave explorers try to survive flooding caves and movie execs try to get your dollars with DAT 3D - 4/10

17 comments:

  1. this is why I convinced my girlfriend to not want to see the movie. I read that it is horrible and heard from a few people that it is just a waste. sad to see movies like this only produced for the "3d" effect of the experience and not the actual movie itself.

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  2. Luckly I don't live in the USA so I didn't even know about this movie.
    Luckly you told me not to see it so I never will.

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  3. haven't seen any trailer of it

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  4. Yeah I totally agree with you, this film just permeates total crap and is a weak attempt at a cash grab

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  5. pretty pictures, nice post

    + followed:)

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  6. yeah, I agree. I hate the push of some executive producers. NAME NAME NAME. However, most of those movies fail. For example is Steven Spielberg, the movies he directed are great, however some of the ones where we have a executive producer were not so good (see: NAME=MONEY)

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  7. where he was the executive producer*

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  8. That really looks terrible, thanks for watching it so I don't have to.

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  9. I hate it when they do this to sell shitty movies, i don't know if this particular one is shitty, but probably it is

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  10. Not very good... I mean even the shots of the beautiful scenery were filmed poorly

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  11. i just rolled my eyes when i saw the trailer for this movie, just couldnt care at all about it.

    http://randomramblingggg.blogspot.com/

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  12. Hmmm. I've been hearing REALLY mixed reviews on this. I might check it out if I'm bored, but probably not til then. Thanks for the review.

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  13. This movie just looks like crap; i wont go unless i go for free

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  14. Well I'm sure they made money off that shit.

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  15. Awesome blog, I knew avoiding this movie was a good idea.

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