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In a nutshell:
– Fantastic use of isolation and fear of the unknown.
– Amazing creatures.
– Realistic (imho) character interaction.
– The ending is AMAZING albeit seriously controversial. You either love it or hate it.
The main negative (and this isn’t insignificant) is one of the main characters is a religious zealot who seriously, seriously drags the middle of movie down. I barley noticed this “lull” on first viewing – I just sat back and enjoyed. On subsequent viewings it REALLY feels like more than half the movie is this nutbag preaching.
Still one of my favorite movies (and easily my favorite horror ending) but the religious nuttery really went a few steps too far over the line.