Horror, 95 Minutes, 2012
Stop me if you’ve heard this one: a group of attractive teens decide to explore an old haunted mine on Halloween. You’ve heard it? Wait tho’: in this case something goes horribly wrong! Oh, still heard it?
Then there’s not much here for you, I guess.
The story is that simple: friends get together to do something wacky on Halloween. They decide to explore the local abandoned mine and the legend that accompanies it. Apparently a family was raped and buried alive there long ago. Their souls are trapped in the ruins and thirst for vengeance! Or maybe they don’t. You’ll have to see for yourself.
The set-up may be cliche, but there is a certain coy cleverness to how it unfolds and ultimately redefines itself. It may not be deep, but it tries harder than most. For various reasons, it doesn’t quite pull it off, but you can clearly see where it was headed. That in itself is a victory when compared to the sloppy mess than most movies at this level present.
It’s worth noting that the movie is what I like to call “slumber-party safe”. There’s no blood or gore to speak of and no sex, nudity or bad language. If you’re looking for a scary movie for a tween slumber-party, this fits the bill. Conversely if you’re looking for a scary movie then you’ll likely need to keep looking. The scares here are safe, tame and predictable.
That’s not a bad thing in and of itself. To seasoned horror fan this will seem tame, even trite. To another it may be the limit of what they can tolerate. Horror is a spectrum and this inhabits a sparsely populated part of it. If you’re able to accept the short comings of the budget and the more saccharine creative decisions then there’s a decent little story here. One that you can enjoy with even your more squeamish friends.