Spelunking for monsters has been done, and done well, which leaves It Came From Below (2021) a big old landing space on which to flop. So rather than pushing the plunge in the same direction as the cave exploration horrors preceding it, this one takes and ultimately surprising turn (I won’t say what, because…spoilers, but that it happened was unexpected, and putting a left turn to a well-trodden path is almost always welcome).
The underground aspect offers an instantly spooky setting; not only do cellphones fail below ground, the characters in peril are virtually unreachable, at least not in a timely matter, add in the idea that nobody can know they’re in trouble and you’ve got the ingredients of suspense that is ripe for the plucking. It also offers up almost limitless chances at the jump scare. Thankfully, here, there are only two full-bodied attempts; one is wholly successful and surprising and the other one is like finding Oz at the end of the Yellow Brick Road. Despite that it was obviously coming, it almost had to be done given where in the climax the movie had reached, so I’ll give it a break.
In general, the acting is good, the script is reasonable, the characters are realistic, and the camera work was simple. There was a hitch here or there, but on the whole, this movie works. There’s nice gore. There are good, frantic chase scenes. The oddities of the situation work with the story. A thrilling dive underground in well under 90 minutes.
This one’s streaming on Prime and it ain’t bad.