Movie review: ‘Abandoned Mine’ is an empty attempt at horror

‘Abandoned Mine’
A scene from the film “Abandoned Mine.”
(Gravitas Ventures)

“Abandoned Mine” is all that its title promises: something generic and empty, with the sense that much has been left behind.

As adolescents in movies like these are wont to do on Halloween, five of them from a small farming community venture into a supposedly haunted, long-disused mountain vein for kicks and giggles. What ensues are endlessly banal exchanges, lots of flashlights shone on rock walls, walking, getting scared, and joking around, all of which leaves you to wonder if anything is ever going to happen to warrant your precious moviegoing time. (It’s hard to shake the notion that naming the young performers cursed with acting this out — two of whom are female and three male — would somehow add insult to the injury of having been in “Abandoned Mine.”)

PHOTOS: Hollywood backlot moments

Writer/producer/director Jeff Chamberlain’s sweepingly dull attempt at a teens-in-distress horror movie is so devoid of creative spark, intelligent characterization, genre pleasure or rudimentary suspense that it begins to feel like its own deserted tunnel from which no value can be extracted. And when the third act shenanigans finally emerge, predictably, it’s like getting paid off in expired coupons.


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