User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 270 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 23 out of 270

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  1. Jul 22, 2013
    10
    The Descent is extremely intense and unpredictable with a dark and original story. It is brutal and terrifying, with chilling action sequences, plus that you will remember the movie for sometime, it is a decent thriller that can be one of the scariest and best horror movies ever made. (The movie is not for anyone who have claustrophobia)
  2. Oct 1, 2011
    10
    The best horror movie ever !
  3. Sep 8, 2013
    8
    The descent is a smart original horror-action movie about six friends who go to explore an unknown cave somewhere in America. Everything is ok until they realize that in this cave some creatures live. And then the action starts. Before the appearance of the monsters it has suspense and in the beginning it is a thriller But it becomes a really good horror movie. It has scary moments, and suspense during the whole movie. You will be scared and you will enjoy it. Trust me. The ending was a little strange. I would like to watch the sequel just to see what will happen. I am really curious. In general the descent is a claustrophobic horror movie and I have to say that it is the first British horror movie that I watched and it was pretty good. Thumbs up! Expand
  4. Jul 23, 2012
    7
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The Descent is of a rare breed these days, a horror film that is actually relentlessly scary. With a simple premise and nice cast to be picked away at one by one, the film is one of the jumpiest out. The setting is terrifically, creating immense claustrophobia early on. And the film is clever, easing the audience into the monsters, showing them little of the fairly simple-costumed creatures. A few points of darkness, a night-vision camera and just enough violence make the Descent an incredibly fun horror. Expand
  5. Mar 16, 2013
    9
    CAVING! NEVER NEVER NEVER NEVER NEVER NOT EVER!!!!!!! This movie has guaranteed I'm a surface dweller for life! I'm a tough character, not easily daunted, but several fear inducing facets contained within this film had me frozen in wide-eyed terror! Watch it and see if I'm wrong...
  6. Aug 26, 2010
    8
    A plot that sounds as though it is destined for B-movie massacre is saved by director Neil Marshall simply by playing by his own rules - it is comprised of an all-female cast, the first 20 minutes are actually used to develop them as characters, and the suspense and horror are all built up even before the real terror strikes.
  7. May 26, 2011
    7
    Not too original as people calm it to be since it borrowed ideas from The Times Machine, Lurking Fear, Beast in the cave, C.H.U.D. It even has the main character falling into a pool of bones like in the remade version of The Time Machine. This idea has been rehashed several times in the past hundred years. Overall it's a good movie but not that great in my eyes. 7.1/10
  8. Jan 28, 2013
    9
    Solid Horror film from the UK and one of my personal favs, but it's fails to get the high score due to somewhat of a sloppy ending. Great all-female cast head deep into a cave system and get stalked by 'crawlers', and it makes for one hell of a Horror film that would freak anyone out! There is also some great character development, especially with the leads Sarah & Juno. Overall I highly enjoyed it and have seen it quite a few times now, and would certainly recommend it to Horror buffs! Expand
  9. Sep 2, 2014
    10
    "The Descent" is possibly the scariest movie ever made, and it's one of the best horror movies of the 2000's, and, possibly, of all time. It's unpredictable, intense, enjoyable, and extremely original. It perfectly combines jump scares with pure tension. I give it my highest recommendation.
  10. Nov 12, 2010
    1
    What a snore. I actually came into this wanting to see what the big stink of it was but.....I lost interest quickly. Why do so many people jerk this film off? A bunch of young women get into a bad situation. Boring. They encounter monsters. BORING. They're blind and most of the fights are in pitch black darkness. A little neat...

    ..then the entire movie is just gore scene with little
    light, the same monsters and no real build up of true fear, a disappointing ending an nonsensical...well, everything...ugh I just can't understand it at all. It's not that it's confusing to me, I just don't see AT ALL what people liked about it. So glad I only paid $3 in Xbox space-bucks just to see it otherwise I would've walked out of the theater had I seen this in one.

    Boring. Boring. Boring.
    Expand
  11. Nov 21, 2010
    8
    This film was enjoyable, well paced and certainly scary enough for most. It's tempting to think that perhaps the beasts in the cave were unnecessary, as the cave itself was forbodeing enough.
  12. Feb 2, 2011
    6
    It was a decently scary horror film, and It will scare the **** out of you if your claustrophobic and are watching it in a dark movie theater. In fact, it was really suspenseful until the middle of the movie, when the blood starts flying and the amount of gore just becomes ridiculous. Falling into a giant pool of blood and organs? The bloody massacre of the creatures when the woman finds a weapon? At this point, all the blood is just silly, and it personally killed the movie for me. Aside from that and the ending, though, it wasn't bad. Expand
  13. May 29, 2011
    7
    A excelent movie of suspense that compense certain conventions knowing explore very well the claustrophobic climate and the strain implied, besides as well as reckon an interested feminine time of actress. To the surface tension, suspense of the good. Every horror movie has that premise that, at first, nothing seems innovator. The objective the Descent is to show how it's possible do something with quality using the same product. Every scene is going be more deep and the idea of the total darkness scenes were brilliant. Expand
  14. Jun 13, 2011
    3
    The movie was a pretty good horror movie but the issues come from its atmosphere. The movie falls victim to the problem of not developing the characters well enough to be able to tell who they were in the dark. The movie is set in an underground cave. This is a very cool and scary setting but the issue come from the fact that it is very dark underground. Most of the action scenes become cluttered and hard to tell what is going on because of the darkness. I am sure that this movie would be great on a big screen or in the theater but for normal folks its an issue. If the director had done something to help the viewer be able to see better, I would have rated the movie better. Expand
  15. Sep 19, 2011
    0
    Trash of a film. I repeat. Trash. Horrible. Great acting, but NO PLOT! Lacks so, so much. Worst movie of the year thus far. As fulfilling as starting at a wall.
  16. Apr 27, 2012
    8
    Hands down one of the best horror movies of the 2000s. It's got scares, boat loads of blood and a near perfect pace to match the intensity. Underground evolved humans rejoice!
  17. Apr 28, 2012
    2
    Ok, what can I say? First, that I am puzzled...I just cant get how people think this is the 'best horror movie ever' , a 'classic', seriously? Well, I never felt it. Classics and good: films like The Omen, Carrie, The Birds, The Exorcist, TCM, and others...this...for God's sake...has to be a joke! I strongly believe his is bad. Incredibly overrated. Many also also say the performances are great. As someone who has worked in performing arts (Mostly in theatre, which is what I truly love), let me tell you that the performances are terrible! At least that is my opinion as someone who has seen a lot of both good and bad acting.

    When I rented this movie I expected something different, smart horror, opportune gore. After 25 minutes -that are unnecessarily slow- I started feeling sleepy...30, 40 minutes...well I basically gave up. I don't care if there was gore after, or monsters, or whatever. It is just so frivolous. I felt no empathy for the characters. Not that it was required for this type of film, of course; but there is no real development of their personalities...it is all pretty shallow. The photography was good, and the idea interesting indeed; but that is not enough to make a movie good. Tension? Almost none. If blood is all you want...you will get there, but only after the first 45 min; have a nap before! For those who do not share my point of view, fair enough; but sincerely, I hoped to watch a decent film, and what I found is something flat, less than mediocre that I will never recommend to anyone and I have no intentions to watch it again...perhaps I will finish watching the last half. I shall do that, while I am having a nice glass of a great sauvignon blanc from the Malbourough region (NZ) and a creamy Tasmanian brie cheese... that I guess, will make it more bearable.
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  18. May 30, 2012
    8
    To be honest, maybe one of the best horror films i have ever seen. It was very unpredictable and gory. I do admit I had to cover my eyes from one death scene, but other than that I was very impressed with the filming and the sets. A definite must see!
  19. Jun 29, 2012
    0
    There is no point to this film. None of the events have any reason to occur, the main character is useless, all the characters end up in a dire situation because the token retarded yank decided that they should all play explorers and went into a cave system with NO idea what they were doing. You end up just hoping that they will all die quickly so you can do something else.
  20. Aug 9, 2012
    6
    The films technical qualities were unbelievable but seeing this film on dvd the technical qualities of the film did not add to any suspense. this may because i did not experience this film in theatres or there is no suspense present.
  21. Sep 24, 2012
    7
    The descent seemed a bit overwhelming, terrifying and gore. I like just enough to rate it a 7. There is a movie that you recommend but ................ okay.
  22. May 30, 2013
    5
    Positive: The Descent is scary!
    Negative: The Descent hasn't a good sophisticated story.
    This will entertain you but this wont haunt you for days or weeks like other movies!
  23. Aug 30, 2013
    8
    While the slow pacing may be off-putting to gorehounds expecting a train through the tunnel blood orgy, it does pick up in the final act, with blood for all, and baths of blood to spare! Featuring actresses who previously never showed any commercial or widespread acclaim, they boast their finest acting chops under direction in a flick that rattles your spine and twists your vertebrae one by one, as the minutes tick on. As you slowly watch each character be ripped limb to limb in the faintest lights by darkness, your mind begins to feel emotion as you realize you spent the first near hour actually growing fond of these women and their character development (how shocking for the Horror genre!) While The Descent may not be a classic to be praised for generations to come, it works best at delivering an hour of building tension, before 30 minutes of an relentlessness terror that leaves a bad thought of regret (if viewing the flaw-free director's cut ending.) Expand
  24. Jul 24, 2014
    5
    The idea itself could be fine, but the movie is silly, not scary at all and even not as violent and brutal as many described.
    Anyway my gf almost puked but just because she's very scared about blood; she gives a 6/10 instead.
    So actually let's say 5.5/10
  25. Sep 4, 2014
    10
    The Descent is an intense horror thriller that ranks among the scariest horror movies.
    ...............................................................
  26. Sep 7, 2014
    10
    One of the coolest horror movies in recent years. If you are claustrophobic don't watch this movie .
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Metascore
71

Generally favorable reviews - based on 30 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 30
  2. Negative: 0 out of 30
  1. Reviewed by: Dan Jolin
    80
    Brutal, bloody, terrifying, astonishing... And so tense it'll leave you aching. The most significant Brit chiller since "28 Days Later."
  2. Reviewed by: Derek Elley
    70
    The chills and spills keep comin' to agreeable effect in Brit-made scarefest The Descent.
  3. Reviewed by: Jeremy Knox
    70
    All in all, this is an accessible art house horror film whose trailer and premise do not do justice to the end result.