Curse of the Mayans/Xibalba (2017)
Dr. Alan Green, an American Archeologist, leads Danielle Noble and her team of cave divers on an expedition searching for the ancient long-lost Mayan Hall of Records. Instead of finding glory, they find Hell hidden in the underwater caves of Xibalba.
REVIEW: Curse of the Mayans, also known as Xibalba, actually turned out quite a bit better than I was expecting. It's still not great overall, don't get me wrong, but it wasn't the dumpster fire I was expecting it to be, and I actually found large portions of it rather enjoyable.
This movie's strongest aspect, and one that surprised me so much for a B-Movie like this, is the characters. All of these characters are fun in their own ways, even the douchy asshole ones, and they're surprisingly acted quite well. With this being a joint American/Mexican production, we have characters that speak only American, characters that speak only Spanish, and then we also have characters that go back and forth between the two flawlessly, and very rarely did the acting come across as anything other than great in all forms.
On top of that, this movie goes above and beyond what you would expect from a low budget B-Movie with its character building, and I also really enjoyed all of the scenes of 'putting a team together' and the exploration scenes and sense of adventure as they travel into the jungles of Mexico in search of a long lost ancient temple of myth. All of that stuff I felt was really engaging, done really well, and shot fantastic.
At this point I was outright loving this movie.
Unfortunately, I didn't need the ENTIRE movie to be just that stuff. As seems to be the theme of the week with all the B-Movies I watched this past week, the main plot of the movie, that being these people coming across ancient alien monsters deep inside this long lost temple, doesn't even happen until the final 15 minutes of the movie! And when it does finally happen , everything is so dark, shot so poorly, and moves so quickly, that you can't pick out anything that's going on.
Add to that the dreadfully bad and confusing opening and closing narration that bookends the movie and filled with so much random exposition that has nothing at all to do with anything else discussed in the movie outside of those moments, and what started out as a movie that took me by surprise in how much I was loving it ended up leaving a really bad taste in my mouth by the time the credits rolled.