release year: 2006
viewing setting: home DVD, 11/3/07
synopsis: Some idiotic young vacationers compound their mistakes and end up in a very bad situation in a foreign country.
impressions: Entertaining for a while, and it had some great scenery (and a lot of tense, claustrophobic dark/underwater/cave scenes) but it was essentially flawed. Flaw #1: too many dark, confusing scenes in which you can't tell who's doing what or what's going on. Flaw #2: fundamentally stupid characters. When your tour bus crashes in the middle of nowhere, you don't just go wandering off into the woods. When you happen to find a small community, you don't just forget all your problems and start drinking. When you wake up hung-over on the beach with all of possessions (including shoes) stolen, you most definitely DO NOT follow someone you just met into the wild, roadless jungle. And, well, you get the idea. I like to think this movie was poking fun at the stereotypical young, carefree (and careless) vacationer who thinks that just because they're from a "better" country, everything will always work out ok for them. See also Hostel.
something this movie has that no other movie has: A deep cut to the head being fixed with a staple gun.
acting: Many of the characters here were either interchangable or forgettable enough that when they stopped being on screen, I barely noticed. Josh Duhamel and Melissa George stood out as the two I could remember, and Olivia Wilde was the next-to-useless sister. Let me say it again: when the entire second half of the movie takes place either in the rainy night or in underwater caves, it's really, REALLY tough to keep track of who's who and who's dead.
final word: A good lesson in how NOT to travel to faraway foreign countries.
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