Movie: Sanctum

I don’t often wish I lived somewhere else, and to say that recent events made me wish I lived in the USA would be a bit of an exaggeration… But I did have a passing pang of wistfulness when I received an email from a lady called Jennifer, the publicist for a new movie produced by James Cameron – he of big budget extravaganzas such as Titanic, Avatar, and some other stuff. He also happens to be a keen scuba diver.

The movie’s publicists are using the blogosphere (how I hate that word) to drum up excitement and publicity for the movie. One of the bloggers we follow, Duane Johnson of Precision Diving based near Chicago in the USA, has already gotten busy!

This is pretty new to us, being bloggers of relatively recent vintage and attracting a fairly narrow range of readers… We don’t get offered freebies! More mainstream bloggers get given all sorts of goods from cases of wine, to jeans, to dresses, iPhones and handbags… In exchange for blogging about their virtues. Granted none of those items would interest Tony and only a few would interest me (except for the iPhone, which would interest both of us)… But it’s the principle of the thing. So I was kind of happy to be contacted by Jennifer.

We were invited to participate in various regional events planned for the film’s launch and to blog about the movie in exchange for free bits and pieces to give away to our reader(s). But the promotional events are all happening over in the USA. And apparently the market defined by “readers (a couple) of South African scuba diving blogs (one so far)” is too small to warrant the film company shipping shirts, caps and pen lights out to our shores. Boo hoo!


Anyway, the movie is called Sanctum, and it sounds pretty cool. (And I said that without being given even a single ballpoint pen for free.) The plot synopsis/excited promotional material reads as follows:

The 3D action-thriller Sanctum, from executive producer James Cameron, follows a team of underwater cave divers on a treacherous expedition to the largest, most beautiful and least accessible cave system on Earth. When a tropical storm forces them deep into the caverns, they must fight raging water, deadly terrain and creeping panic as they search for an unknown escape route to the sea.

Master diver Frank McGuire (Richard Roxburgh) has explored the South Pacific’s Esa-ala Caves for months. But when his exit is cut off in a flash flood, Frank’s team—including 17-year-old son Josh (Rhys Wakefield) and financier Carl Hurley (Ioan Gruffudd)—are forced to radically alter plans. With dwindling supplies, the crew must navigate an underwater labyrinth to make it out. Soon, they are confronted with the unavoidable question: Can they survive, or will they be trapped forever?

Shot on location off the Gold Coast in Queensland, Australia, Sanctum employs 3-D photography techniques Cameron developed to lens Avatar. Designed to operate in extreme environments, the technology used to shoot the action-thriller will bring audiences on a breathless journey across plunging cliffs and into the furthest reaches of our subterranean world.

I think Cecil will enjoy it, for one! Here’s the official website for the movie. There’s also a youtube channel that might be worth checking out (after Tony’s, of course).

The film opens in the USA tomorrow. I hope it comes to cinemas here, otherwise we’ll have to order the DVD directly!

P.S. The poem quoted repeatedly in the movie is called Kubla Khan and it’s by Samuel Taylor Coleridge. You can find the complete text here.

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Lapsed mathematician, creator of order, formulator of hypotheses. Lover of the ocean, being outdoors, the bush, reading, photography, travelling (especially in Africa) and road trips.

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