Death Tunnel Review
Written by: jamhorner
Death Tunnel, for me, was an atrocity of a film manly for three reasons: the acting was painful, the plot was a rip off and it had some scenes that were irrelevant to the story and plot outline. Essentially its about a group of young people that who are dared to stay overnight in a creepy, old abandoned hospital, there are 8 people and there is one person per floor. They must make it though all floors to win. Apparently, if I remember correctly, this hospital was filled with really sick people that were killed by Dr. Vangard during electroshock theory and later disposed of in an underground sewer line called the “death tunnel.” This movie was an obvious rip off of 1999’s House on Haunted Hill, which had the same principle. Consider: in Death Tunnel Dr. Vangard tortures his patients via electroshock and disposed the bodies, in Haunted Hill Dr. Vannicutt tortures his patients via electroshock and surgery and disposes the bodies in a secret room. Coincidence? I think not.
To start off, the acting was hard to watch and at some points it seemed like a Lifetime movie or a WGN afternoon soap opera. However, I don’t think it’s the actors and actresses fault, entirely, I think part of the reason was the director was not pushing them to their full potential and I’m beginning to question whether or not he can recognize good acting and bad acting through the camera lens. There are some good emotional acting as well as screams by the five girls who play in this film, there are some good crying scenes but there are points were the acting seemed a bit too staged and corny for me. Granted, they did what they could for a generally bad movie.
The plot was very worn out and has been used in multiple movies. As I said before, we have seen this plot in Haunted Hill but what I failed to mention before was that the reason to why the ghosts are killing these girls is another subplot that involves heirs and past generations, yet another plot point that ’99’s Haunted Hill had. Can we see that this film, despite some minor differences seems more like a B+-movie remake or sequel? The one thing that this movie had that Haunted Hill did not have, which I was sad it didn’t’ was the theme and metaphor of Death. Unlike previous movies of the same plot that revolved around crazy psychotic ghosts or maniacal doctors, this one had Death incarnate. However, there are some completely unnecessary filler shots that did not make any sense and were inappropriately random. It had the feel of “Behind the Wall of Sleep.” (i.e. the shower room scene the had orange goo). There were just too much non sequitur scenes in this one.
The only thing that could have saved this film was the camera angles and the lighting. The movie had a feel that fits with its confusing and deranged plot and acting. The camera angles reflected greatly upon complexity and the director did a great job balancing intense angular shots and establishing shots. The lighting had a cold and dark feel. There were some great poetic shots that reflected the corridors as well as the scenery shots outside of the hospital and there were some excellent lighting that rotated around the hospital as well as the Death Tunnel.
All in all, this movie was a fairly decent atrocity of a film, with poor acting, poor plot and it incorporated scenes that made no sense whatsoever. Despite the great cinematography an excellent lighting, this film is still a bad film to watch and I would not recommend this one to any horror fan who has a good palate. Perhaps those who love B-movies with a special twist would love this film but as for someone like me, I did not find it remotely amusing.