The Ruins

Rated NR

This one wasn’t screened for critics, which is always a bad sign. As it turns out, it’s about two-thirds of a decent horror film. Some vacationing college students wind up atop ancient ruins where creepy-crawly vines start eating them. The film boasts an impressive cast (including Jena Malone, Jonathan Tucker and Laura Ramsey), and they act their hearts out. There’s also some nasty, yucky gore as characters start cutting themselves up to remove the vines from their bodies. What’s wrong is that the film is set in one drab location—a campsite atop a pyramid—and that’s it. Director Carter Smith does his best to keep the action moving, but a bunch of college kids standing around making dumb decisions grows tired in about 15 minutes. Still, there are bright spots. I liked Ramsey’s character, who chops off her upper thigh in an effort to save her own life. (Blech!) Her performance is the film’s highlight.

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