Friday, May 29, 2009

Survival Quest (1989, Don Coscarelli)

Following up my review for Don Coscarelli's The Beastmaster is another one of his films, Survival Quest. Probably the most notable thing about this film is its cast of nobodies turned somebodies, including Dermot Mulroney (My Best Friend's Wedding) and Catherine Keener (40 Year Old Virgin) before anyone had ever heard of them. I myself don't think I had ever even heard of this film before recently, though the logo does look familiar. I may have confused it with Vision Quest before or something though back in the day.

Survival Quest is the story of a group of city folk who sign up to go into the wilderness on a sort of self help adventure. The group consists of a rich girl about to get married (Traci Lin), an old guy (Ben Hammer), a divorcee (Catherine Keener) and an ex-con (Dermot Mulroney), among others. Their leader, Hank (Lance Henriksen) is a survival expert and encourages and teaches them that they need to all work together if they want to survive in the wilderness. They meet up with a group of teenage boys led by ex-army man Jake (Mark Rolston) who carry real guns and fuck with them. One of the teenage boys takes things too far and soon the group must learn the real meaning of survival.

Survival Quest is a neat little action-drama that is pretty enjoyable. Some of the characters are a little too stereotypical and the action doesn't really get going until about 2/3 of the way into the film, but it was still a fun watch. Its funny how much Coscarelli's films vary, from Phantasm to Beastmaster to Survival Quest to Bubba Ho-Tep. The man definitley has some range when it comes to making enjoyable films. Overall, it's worth a watch and I'm sure I'll revisit it in the near future. By the way, check out the poster for this film. Actually a fairly terrifying, ominous picture



  1. Cool. I think I'll have to check this out.

  2. I remember this being around in video rental places but never got around to checking it out. Wish I had now, as I have a lot of respect for Coscarelli.