Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Movie Review: Sanctum (Spoiler Alert!)

Last night, I sat through the movie Sanctum with some friends. Hmm. This oddly paced, James Cameron-produced movie would be more appropriate if it carried the title Sanctum: Or, John Garvin and Andrew Wight Hate Women.
Wight and Garvin, responsible for the choppy screenplay, must have been seriously burned by women in their lives. Probably women who considered diving a hobby. I mean, that's the only excuse for their treatment of women in this movie.
There are three women in Sanctum. Three. Alright, fine. Maybe there really weren't a lot of women present at the cave dive that inspired this movie. I'm comfortable with that. But's the way these women progress throughout the movie that bothers me. (Here's the whole spoiler alert part, in case you're planning on seeing it.)

This movie is not a feel-good movie. Just about everybody dies. (Not terribly surprising, considering how most "based on a true story" movies go.) It's an unexplored cave dive gone wrong. There are bound to be casualties. The men who die go in a heroic way, or a manner they deserve. (Less than heroic.) The women?
Let's start with the woman who dies during a dive because "her heart wasn't in it." That's what they say. They lament her death with, "her heart wasn't in the dive." At least her body is brought back to the base. And then there were two. The next one to die goes in such a casual manner that I can't recall any single detail concerning her death. (This speaks volumes, considering this made for 3D movie relies heavily on gory and somewhat disturbing images.) I've got nothing. She's a bit like a glorified extra. One minute she's there, on the dive team, and the next...down to one lady.
This last one...oh man. She spends the movie flirting, playing by her own rules, screwing up, and throwing temper tantrums. (Lovely.) She's a tag-along girlfriend thrown into the crisis. An unexperienced diver, she first screams about refusing to wear a dead girl's wetsuit, then bitches about wishing she had a wetsuit. (In her near-hypothermic state, they strip her down to her underwear and cuddle her for warmth. But she's hot, so nobody minds.) Some stressful scenes later, she doesn't listen to timely advice and dies because she gets her hair stuck in a carabiner and pretty much scalps herself. ...What? As a friend put it, she might as well have died because of her menstrual cycle. (Not to mention, the scene was hugely traumatic for anyone with long hair.)

Thanks, Sanctum. What a special movie-watching experience. You may have just inspired this girl to write a screenplay! Now, off to recall the potentially dangerous hobbies of my exes...

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