Powered by Blogger.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Review: Stay Out Stay Alive

Director: Dean Yurke
Screenplay: Dean Yurke
Year: 2019

It’s everlasting darkness together with a sense of claustrophobia make caves an ideal place to film a horror movie. Movies like “The Descent” and “As Above, So Below” have shown that this premise, combined with other pieces of horror cinema is capable of creating a terrifying scenario and give way to frightening moments. However, in “Stay Out Stay Alive” the terrifying atmosphere is not always well used.

Five friends go on a road trip to a national park and during the first night one of them takes a walk at night and ends up falling into a cave and getting her leg stuck under a rock. When the rest of the group finds her, they discover that the cave is full of gold, which they decide to illegally mine out to solve their economic burdens. When they start to take the gold out, a presence makes itself felt in this place, willing to punish them for their greed.

Before reaching the 15 minutes runtime mark, the issues of this movie are exposed. An inconsistent and unfocused script accompanied by weak acting and dialogues makes apparent the deficiencies of a script that needed a few revisions for it to properly make good use of its premise. What’s even worse is that the lack of focus in the plot makes it end up filled with plot holes too evident to ignore them.

Once the group of friends finds the mine full of gold, presences start being felt that suggests are the spirits of the Native Americans that worked on these mines, The concept is interesting, but the execution disappoints, with bad CGI and images that are not at all disturbing. Some of these sequences end up in cheap jump scares that have nothing to do with the plot and re not effective.

The characters not only suffer from bad acting by the main cast starring Christina July Kim (“Dropping the S Bomb”), Sage Mears (“Criminal Minds”), and Brandon Wardle (“Frisky”), but they also suffer from bad development. In the script, as well as on the screen, the exposition of the characters from director and writer Dean Yurke in his first work in both roles, lacks elegance. The way in which their personal problems are brought up and how they intertwine with the discovery of gold in the cave is aggressive and somewhat amateurish.

In the final act, the movie improves a bit thanks to the cinematography and some unexpected twists. However, when this moment arrives, the deficiencies have made a hole too deep to ignore and escape them. The ending, even when it is the best part of the movie, is still an expected one and has little surprise, and surprises that do happen don’t have much weight in the outcome. 

“Stay Out Stay Alive” uses the concepts of psychological horror to bring a story centered in the history of Native Americans and gold mines, but which supernatural element doesn’t have much importance in the plot. The story ends up being one of greed and how humans can be corrupted by it and, how the movie portrays, the supernatural forces don’t need to act for this to happen. What could have been a good movie ended up suffering from a weak script and bad acting that harms the probabilities of taking something positive out of it. Ironically, its title is the best warning.

No comments:

Post a Comment