Sanctum is a cave adventure movie directed by Alister Grierson, and starring Richard Roxburgh Ioan Grufford and Rhys Wakefield, and produced by James Cameron. The two most outstanding things are the visuals and the characters.


Sanctum is a action-thriller where a team of cave divers go on an expedition to the largest and least accessible cave system on Earth. When a tropical storm forces them deep into the caverns, they must fight raging water, and deadly terrain as they search for an escape route out of the cave and to the sea. Master diver Frank McGuire has explored the South Pacific’s Esa-ala Caves for months. But when his exit is shut by a large boulder following a flash flood, Frank’s team-including 17-year-old son Josh and financier Carl Hurley are forced to radically alter plans. With severely dwindling supplies, the crew must navigate an underwater labyrinth to make it out.


Let’s start with what’s good with this movie. In classic James Cameron style this movie is beautiful, almost everything about it is amazing to look at, the underwater effects, the lighting, the actors themselves, the scenery towards the beginning, and the 3d adds a whole new affect to the claustrophobia the film produces.


Now we can move on to the bad parts, Number one: the writing is simply painful, especially towards the beginning, not only being totally unbelievable but it just sounds stupid and produces a lot of face palm moments. Number two: its simply too predictable, all the “twists” are always obvious and every plot point is too easily predicted, which makes the film boring, all scenes where they are not close to death are boring, especially the long talky scenes towards the beginning, although it looks good its simply too boring and predictable. Number 3: the characters are completely one dimensional, with no depth, and no believability, which is partly due to the bad writing and partly due to the average acting.


Overall I would compare this movie to a stupid pretty girl who is nice to look at but is so boring, predictable and stupid it makes nobody want to have any thing to do with her. Altogether I would give this movie a 2 James Cameron’s out of 5, and I would recommend this movie to anybody who loves sitting back and zoning out to some great scenery shots and water effects.

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  1. I think your review is completely unfair. Sanctum was co-written by somebody whom this actually happened to. To say the plot was predictable and boring is like saying that you’d rather see a completely outlandish film that supposedly is based on real events but actually is very untrue to what actually happened.

    Is the plot of 127 hours also boring, even though before watching you know that he’s going to get stuck down a hole and cut his hand off?

    I actually didn’t find it predictable at all. Without wanting to spoil anything, I expected the ending to be far cheesier than it actually was.

  2. The ending wasn’t surprising though. The movie was just a bunch of cussing and weird character development, the characters just acting out then going back to normal because the script randomly went aloof. The problem in the movie was that it wasn’t gripping enough, and it looked like a boring cave diver movie… which it was… minus the violence. It has nothing on a claustrophobic masterpieces like The Descent, though it wasn’t meant to be a horror…….. but were they trying to make it scary in a sense? They were trying to make it a thriller, which, in my opinion, failed, and made this a boring cinematic experience.

  3. Well, I was surprised by the ending. I haven’t seen the Descent, but you’re right, this wasn’t a horror, but I would say it was a thriller, although not a particularly scary one. It’s trying to play more on the terror of being buried alive, than being attacked by monters etc.

  4. Agreed about that, but the parts that made me kind of laugh were the random “I don’t like you,” (set this person on fire), and the other deaths which just happened to kill people off. This isn’t a completely true story: no one killed anyone in Andrew Wight’s actual event, but some did die from drowning. The point is that James Cameron was an executive producer, and there was a $30 million budget because of the shit director, so they really used their materials well (I think the reason Cameron didn’t direct is because he knew it wasn’t going to be that good). But, they could have tried to scrap together more money, or use their budget to a better extent, possibly to get actors who could actually act besided Ioan Gruffudd and Richard Roxburgh, and they could have made some awesome desperation scenes and claustrophobic scenes to make the audience feel uncomfortable instead of killing off the characters one by one.

  5. I would not go to far to say that the plot is completely predictable but the biggest problem with this movie is the dialogue and the performances. I normally do not blame actors or actresses for dialogue because they are saying what the script is telling them to but it is so bad in this film it is almost if the performers are ready to crack a smile every couple of minutes.

    Plus you have no sympathy for these characters because they are told quite clearly not to go and what do they do, they go anyway. Yes I know their would be no movie if they chose not to go but if that is your plan do not have those kind of warnings.

    The only way that the audience can have sympathy for characters in films is if the film develops them to the point where the audience is cheering for them to survive, at no point in the movie are you rooting for any of these characters to survive.

    The movie is not terrible but it offers nothing new and for lack of a better word is it just dull.

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