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Dir: Kevin Carraway (The Fear Chamber)
Cast: Ving Rhames, Luke Goss, Rebecca da Costa, Bonnie Somerville, Brianna Lee Johnson, Matt Barr, Val Kilmer
USA, 2012 (DVD Release)
Reason to see: Horror flick with a supernatural feel will always draw me in
7 Below starts with some classic elements to horror films including following a group of semi-stranded folk where only some know each other, the elusive 'is he creepy or helpful?' local and a creepy location with unknown history plus a natural (or is it?) event to keep them from leaving. I should totally make a list of films that meet those parameters, but it may not fit as a post title. In the bunch, we has some pretty good actors including Val Kilmer as a not-so-nice husband and Ving Rhames as the local guy as well as Luke Goss (Hellboy II, Blade II, Death Race II) and Matt Barr ('Hellcats', Harper's Island) as brothers, and Rebecca da Costa and Bonnie Somerville and Brianna Lee Johnson.
I liked the idea of 7 Below and its setting, but had a hard time believing some of the situations - oddly the practical ones like a storm over the more far-fetched horror/thriller story line that brought the film together. The concept itself was pretty interesting but I kept feeling myself pulled out of it by the practical, which isn't something I usually have a problem with.
Watching 7 Below kept me guessing, not so much about what has happening in the film but what kind of film it was. I watch a lot of B-Movies and a fair amount of direct to DVD horror and it had elements of both, but fell somewhere in between them but not with the halves I personally enjoy. With B-movies, I enjoy when they really go for the cheese factor - and they got some of that in here with some crazy lines and far fetched ideas, but rarely was anyone acting like they were in a B-Movie (except for a few moments where Ving Rhames totally nailed it). And for the direct to DVD horror I love when they go with crazy concepts and a real make-it-work attitude, but here it just felt a little thin on ideas and not enough punch to keep me hooked. I did think there were a few choice moments and it certainly had a creepy idea so there was some good creativity going, I just wish they tightened it up with better pacing and less inconsistencies, but they did give us some stronger and interesting characters. I was particularly impressed with Luke Goss who did a solid job, and this was the first dramatic role I saw him in and would like to see more; I'm going to keep my eye on him.
Shannon's Overall View:
I wanted to enjoyed it more
I'm not sure I'd watch it againt
I'd recommend for the b-movie completeists of the horror variety
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© Shannon Ridler, 2012