Dead Mine on DVD

Tuesday, 21 May 2013 00:00
Posted in Cult Movies on DVD
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Dead Mine comes to DVDA small but heavily armed group of explorers travel to a remote Indonesian island, looking for a mythical hoard of gold abandoned during World War 2. They discover a mine built by the Japanese and are trapped inside when a group of pirates attack their party. There is a chance that the mine could contain the treasure, but it definitely also harbours some very nasty surprises left by the previous occupants.

The film is an ambitious second feature for director Steven Sheil (“Mum & Dad”). It was shot in Indonesia with an international cast that includes Sam Hazeldine (Lightfields, Midsomer Murders), former stuntman Les Loveday (“Stardust”), Japanese actress Miki Mizuno (“Gamera 2: Attack of the Legion”), Carmen Soo from China and a host of Indonesian actors including Ario Bayu.

Without giving too much away, fans of “The Descent” and “Dead Snow” will be right at home here. The film has few original ideas but it is very well executed and features strong production design from Ian Bailie (“Reign of Fire”). Although the majority of the running time is spent creeping, crawling and running through caves, corridors and roughly-shorn tunnels, there is enough variety in the shapes, layouts and content of the spaces to prevent it becoming too samey. The lighting is good and despite the claustrophobic locations you can always see what is going on.

The creature design, costumes and make-up are excellent, and unlike the aforementioned “The Descent”, there is more than one variety of monster lurking in these tunnels!

The movie’s immersive atmosphere is helped immeasurably by the superb use of surround sound, initially in the sweaty, Indonesian jungle with foliage rustling and insects, and later with the echo-heavy tunnels and monsters darting about all around the characters and the viewer. It is quite unnerving.

The roles are not very complex but the acting is pretty good on the whole, especially Bayu as the lead mercenary guiding and guarding the group. He puts a human, sympathetic face on a soldier, in contrast to Hazeldine’s ex-military civil engineer who is stoic but more clichéd.

The pacing is occasionally a bit off, especially when an interruption to the action later on outstays its welcome and relaxes the tension too far; the film does then try very hard to make up for it in the final twenty minutes, however.

Horror fans will not be disappointed if they rent this for some undemanding, competently produced shocks.

The bonus content on the disc includes:

  • Interviews with the cast and crew
  • B-roll behind the scenes clips
  • Deleted scenes


The extras are average at best for a low-key release like this, but they are better than nothing!

“Dead Mine” (2012) is out now on DVD, courtesy of Entertainment One. The main feature has a running time of 91 minutes approx, carries an ‘18’ certificate and retails for £12.99, or less from

Last modified on Saturday, 25 May 2013 10:27

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