Down to Hell is Ryuhei Kitamura's first stab at film making. It also stands as the acting prequel to his hit cult film Versus, which was splendid for combining properties of Evil Dead with popular Capcom game Devil May Cry. Thanks to Kitamura's break out in Hollywood after his release of Midnight Meat Train and Godzilla: Final Wars, he seems to finally be moving on to complete his Versus sequel, which I am dreading.
Down to Hell is a simplistic short film; one might even call it a student film without a second glance. The characters have no real name or background and the plot structure seems to rip off classic short story The Most Dangerous Game. These "punks" initiate a game in which a man they were hired(?) to kill is granted a 10 minute head start to start hiding. After this, the game begins, but with that Versus twist we all love.
The dead become undead and the body count begins to pile up, but in a minuscule way thanks to the small cast. I'm not one to cherish a directors early work only cause I approve of his later directing efforts. In all reality of the phrase "fine film making", this early effort flat out sucks. Down to Hell is cheap and an amateur's work of "Art". Sam Raimi might be proud of this lacking effort, but I sure the hell am not.
Down to Hell has a prehistoric version of the Casio music that makes Versus so energetic. I could find some way to appreciate it, but I'm reveling in the sheer "almost hatred" I have for this film. Down to Hell is ridiculous and a petty excuse for a horror film. It doesn't titillate, it doesn't excite, and it does not pass the time any easier. Just repeat to yourself. It's only a short film...It's only a short film....It is only a short film.