SANCTUM has excellent 3D cinematography while the script loses some luster as it digs into
the Hollywood cliché
rulebook from time to time. It is inspired by the true story of co-writer Andrew Wight (a diving buddy of
director James Cameron) where he once went cave diving with 14 people and became trapped (which was documented in the documentary
film NULLARBOR DREAMING). They had to find another way out and they all lived.
However, SANCTUM doesn't have the same rules. It has all of the stereotypes lined
up from the great cave diver who is too hard on his son and the billionaire who needs something to spend his money in (and
get his thrill junkie addiction fed). Everyone ignores the impending storm and don't pack things out until
it is too late and a group of the expedition gets trapped and they have to find another way out.
Like in a movie, some of them probably won't make it out alive, but I wonder if they needed the body count to make a thrilling
movie. As they dive into the stereotypes and book of screen writing cliches, the movie does loose some
of it's strength and only the wonderful cinematography (and some good direction) holds it together. You have
some good actors in it and yet the movie has something against the female characters (as it goes out of its way to put
the women through pain and panic).
Audio commentary with Director Alister Grierson, Actor Rhys Wakefield, and co-writer/ producer
Andrew Wight. It is an interesting and entertaining commentary that reveals a few details about ethr production
and how hard it would be to shoot in actual caves (so they built sets which had their own dangers).
9 1/2 minutes of deleted scenes cut for pacing reasons (and part ofone shows up near the end
of the film)- the scenes are unfinished as you see green screen in some of them and one scene is entertaining as they
refer to the cave as the billionaire's blunder (the guy who is funding the cave exploration).
SANCTUM: THE REAL STORY is a 46 minute making-of documentary split up into three parts: HOW IT
BEGAN, MAKING THE MOVIE, IN THE AFTERMATH. It is mixed with interviews, behind-the-scenes footage from before
and during the production, and clips from the film (which run on for a little long in many cases).
FINAL ANALYSIS: SANCTUM is a better experience on second viewing and the extras are
halfway interesting. It makes me want to check out the documentary film NULLARBOR DREAMING which inspired this film.
this DVD review is (c)6-9-2011 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission.
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