Look, it is July, and here is a review of a foreign movie! Usually these reviews happen really late or really early in the year, and usually for award reasons. It is hard for me to go out of my way normally, unless something really captivates me, or I hear good things, or I am in the right mood.
And then I found Cave, which really fits none of these categories. But it was under an hour and a half, on Netflix, and about a subject that had some interest to me.
This movie out of Norway has only a handful of actors and the description implies a lot of thrills, so it seemed like an easy no-brainer for the site. However, going into it I want it to be warned: Despite being a Norwegian film and the language being Norwegian, this movie is in English dubbed. Or Spanish! Netflix didn’t have the original language as an option with subtitles.
Fuck, from this image, this movie might as well be French.
Time for a reunion for three friends, Charlie (Heidi Toini) (a girl), Adrian (Mads Sjøgård Pettersen), and Viktor (Benjamin Helstad). They are all war veterans and have been friends longer than before that.
In fact, Viktor and Charlie used to be a couple. Now, ten years later, it turns out that Charlie and Adrian are a couple. Only awkward if you make it awkward.
They decide to go cave diving together as a sort of reunion, to reconnect, because it has been some time. They are going into a cave where the exit has not been mapped out yet in its waterways, so as adventurers, they are going to check it out and try to be daring! Hooray!
And then some bad stuff happens, some dark secrets in those dark caves. Oooh, scary.
Also starring Ingar Helge Gimle as another extremely minor character.
This is not a spoiler because you can’t fucking tell what is happening.
Although normally I am a component for dubbed films and don’t care about the dubbed vs subtitled debate, this film suffered more from dubbing. We got three middle aged, probably in their 40’s old war people going cave diving in the middle of nowhere. They are gruff and experienced. And the two guys sounded like surfer dudes in their 20’s. Even if the film on its own was decent plot wise (it wasn’t), I couldn’t take anything they were doing seriously.
Nothing screams out real when surfer guys talk about the war and how serious being in a cave is. So much early just felt like a sarcastic joke, that the film felt like it was dragging despite its incredibly small run time.
The plot itself is pretty bad. It has appropriate foreshadowing to figure it all out, but it never really feels tense. You just feel that the characters aren’t actually as smart or believable as they say they are. I don’t know a lot about going into caves or cave diving, but I am pretty certain they make a lot of obvious mistakes and don’t look like professionals.
More importantly, there is a lot that goes unexplained in the film. Maybe they were hoping for a sequel. (Oh hey look, Cave 2 on IMDB, and one of the actors is listed again but with a new character name. What?) Maybe they were hoping we would draw our own conclusions, which I thankfully did do. A conclusion that said that this Cave movie stunk.
1 out of 4.