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15 Great Cave Movies For When You're Not Feeling Claustrophobic Enough

Updated August 28, 2020 1.3k votes 659 voters 101.4k views15 items

List RulesFilms must take place in caves or, at the very least, caves must be a very important plot point in the film.

Get ready to dive into the best cave movies ever, ranked by movie fans. Caving movies, otherwise known as spelunking movies, can capture our imagination due ot the unknown depths. These films add to the sense of mystery that caves have whether they're a fictional narrative or documentary. So, don your headlamp and help determine which of these is the best cave movie of all time. You'll also discover other scary cave horror movies like The Descent (besides The Descent Part II) which took audiences by surprise back in 2005.

Look to these movies whenever you want to feel claustrophobic, discover a monster or monsters that have gone undiscovered for centuries. Hey, you might even learn a little about caves or get away with not reading Jules Verne's classic novel by watching one of the number adaptations. See your favorite cave movies below? Be sure to vote them up to help the best cave movie reach the top of the list.

  • Five female friends take out their sixth friend, who lost her husband and child the year before, on a spelunking adventure. The group makes their way through a narrow passage that collapses and Juno reveals that she has led the group into a previously unexplored cave system. What unfolds from there is a taught horror story when they find out that they are not alone in the caves.

    Rotten Tomatoes score: 85%

    • Actors: Shauna Macdonald, Natalie Mendoza, Alex Reid, Saskia Mulder, MyAnna Buring
    • Released: 2005
    • Directed by: Neil Marshall

    More The Descent 

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  • 2

    In what seems to be an increasingly bad idea, a mixed team of veteran and inexperienced divers/cave explorers, venture into an unexplored cave system in Papua New Guinea. The film was not well reviewed by critics but that didn't stop audiences from turning out to experience this action-thriller in 3D during its theatrical release. Unlike some of the other movies on this list, the drama here comes from natural disasters and conflicting personalities within the team.

    Rotten Tomatoes score: 30%

    • Actors: Ioan Gruffudd, Andrew Hansen, Richard Roxburgh, Daniel Wyllie, Rhys Wakefield
    • Released: 2011
    • Directed by: Alister Grierson
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  • Picking up almost immediately after The Descent (2005), The Descent Part II follows an amnesiac Sarah, Sheriff Vaines, his Deputy, and three cave specialists as they go back into the nightmare caves to find possibly find other survivors from Sarah's previous expedition. Of course, they run into the cave inhabitants once again so the audience can relive the thrills and chills reminiscent of the first film.

    Rotten Tomatoes score: 55%

    • Actors: Josh Dallas, Shauna Macdonald, Nora-Jane Noone, MyAnna Buring, Anna Skellern
    • Released: 2009
    • Directed by: Jon Harris

    More The Descent Part 2 

    #288 of 404 The Greatest Disaster Movies of All Time#100 of 115 The Best Horror Movie Franchises#407 of 488 The Scariest Movies Ever Made

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  • 4

    A team of American spelunkers is hired explore a cave system under a buried Eastern Orthodox abbey. Despite being outfitted with the latest equipment that allows divers to be submerged for up to 24 hours, the spelunkers run into cave-ins, rapids, and unknown creatures. The mystery that surrounds the creatures drive the scientific minds within the group but will it be enough to save them and help the team reach the surface?

    Rotten Tomatoes score: 12%

    • Actors: Lena Headey, Piper Perabo, Morris Chestnut, Daniel Dae Kim, Eddie Cibrian
    • Released: 2005
    • Directed by: Bruce Hunt
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