Frankly, this thriller is a bit behind the curve in its storytelling, so even though it's a solidly well-made example of the found-footage genre, it feels derivative and tired. The script cleverly weaves in real historical events to make it a lot more intriguing, but the screenwriter seems to run out of ideas before the end, resorting to horror cliches and grisly effects that feel rather corny.
The true story took place in February 1959, when nine hikers disappeared while hiking in the snowy Ural mountains. When their bodies were discovered, they had mysterious internal injuries that didn't match their external wounds. The mystery has never been solved, so for her final project, American psychology student Holly (Goss) decides to investigate, travelling to Russia to shoot a documentary with film student Jenson (Stokoe), sound recordist Denise (Atkinson) and two perky mountaineering experts (Albright and Hawley). But when they start climbing to the icy pass, strange things begin to happen around them. Then they stumble into something shocking.
Director Harlin has a great time cranking up a sense of doom, with gleeful references to sinister Soviet experiments, alien sightings and even the existence of a yeti. The locals taunt these too-curious Yanks with tales about the "Mountain of the Dead". And their expedition is intercut with archive photos and footage of the original 1959 hikers. So there's a real sense that these intrepid students could find pretty much anything up there. And since we see everything through Jenson's camera, there's a real sense of wonder about the expansive beauty of the wintry Urals. Meanwhile, the lively young cast has a lot of fun bringing the characters to life through some soapy romantic entanglements and hints of various back-stories.
Continue reading: The Dyatlov Pass Incident [aka Devil's Pass] Review
James (Phillips) is a geeky misfit who has a sign above his head saying "loser". Literally. After his friend Ian (Grant) commits suicide, he receives a message from him that challenges him to learn how to talk to women. His friends (Leonidas and Grezo) encourage him to try, starting with an awkward chat at Ian's funeral with his school crush Hannah (Atkinson). He then starts a mentorship with cocky motivational speaker Ampersand (Conway), a disciple of womanising writer guru Zeus (Kemp). But this will require changing almost everything about himself.
Continue reading: How To Stop Being A Loser Review
Gemma Atkinson and Jason 'J' Brown endured a frightening encounter with a host of unsavoury jungle residents on the new series of I'm a celebrity...
The former Hollyoaks actress and the ex-boyband member were face to face with cockroaches, ants, meal worms and eel slime during the Terror Train and the Temple of Doom Bushtucker Trial, but endured the unpleasant Antipodean visitors to earn three meals for the camp.
Presenter Ant Mcpartlin told the pair that six stars were fixed inside the Temple of Doom, into which they would travel.
"You've got to go in search of them," he explained. "Sit in the cart and then the cart with move through. It will stop four times - when it stops, the star will fall from the ceiling along with some other jungle nastiness," said Ant.
"You have 30 seconds to secure your star before the cart moves again. This happens four times and the final two you find at the end, they're not going to drop, they will be hanging there so feel around for them."
Before the trial began, 'J' reassured Gemma, saying: "When it happens don't think about it, just grab the stars.
"It's going to be nasty - there are going to be things crawling all over us Gemma, are you ready?" he asked.
A bucket of eel slime soon cascaded over Gemma, before a cockroach shower left her screaming: "It's down my top, it's eating me, aaagh! It's nipping my back, the b**tard."
While 'J' was unable to find the star protected by a nest of green ants, Gemma ignored a shower of meal worms to grab a third star, securing a third meal for the contestants.
Back at the camp the contestants joked about a Cerys Matthews-Marc Bannerman wedding, and Janice Dickinson, Anna Ryder Richardson and Christopher Biggins all received special messages from their loved ones.
Continue reading: Gemma And J Take Terror Train