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The Descent$
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James Marriott

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9781906733711

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781906733711.001.0001

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Introduction

Introduction

Chapter:
(p.9) Introduction
Source:
The Descent
Author(s):

James Marriott

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.3828/liverpool/9781906733711.003.0002

This introductory chapter provides an overview of The Descent (Neil Marshall, 2005). By the end of the millennium, it was easy to think that horror was a spent force. But by the middle of the 2000s, things looked different. British critic Alan Jones coined the term the 'Splat Pack' to describe a group of directors — including Neil Marshall — who were making films that were throwbacks, indeed often explicit homages, to a 1970s US independent horror sensibility. The phrase caught on and the film industry paid attention: these movies were cheap to make and sold extremely well. However, the most commercially successful of them tended towards a cartoonish posturing. Fortunately, not all the films celebrated under the 'Splat Pack' rubric were so throwaway; some of the more intelligent, effective works even did well at the box office. To some viewers, The Descent marked a true return to form. The chapter then presents a brief background of Neil Marshall.

Keywords:   The Descent, Neil Marshall, horror genre, Splat Pack, US independent horror

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