The Hole In The Ground is a horror movie that has a lot to unpack from it. The entire film is full of red herrings, hallucinations and a third act that leads to more questions than answers.
So what exactly can we take from the film and are the events portrayed in it exactly what took place?
Well throughout this video I’ll be breaking down everything that you need to know about the ending of the movie as well as what we can take from it. There will be heavy spoilers here so if you don’t want to know anything in regards to the movie then I highly suggest that you turn off now.
With that out the way, I’m Deffinition and welcome to the channel where I explain it so you don’t have to.
The Hole In The Ground Plot Synopsis
The Hole In The Ground centres around Sarah O’Neill and her son Chris. Whilst never confirmed, we can sumise that Sarah is escaping an abusive relationship with Chris’ father and thus the two have moved to a dilapidated house in the Irish countryside that Sarah is attempting to renovate.
At the beginning of the film, when she is out driving with Chris, Sarah nearly hits a woman who wanders out into the middle of the road. Whilst Sarah initially goes to check and see if everything is ok, she sees that the woman is unresponsive to her and just stands still in the path, muttering to herself. Early on this woman quickly becomes one of the most intriguing characters of the film and Sarah’s journey somewhat mirrors hers.
We learn that she is called Noreen Brady and that years prior her son James was killed in a car accident.
Noreen Brady is infamous in the area as before James death she loudly protested that the boy was not really her son and that he was an imposter. Whilst his death was seemingly accidental, many people in the village believe that she was responsible and since the death she has become exetremely disconnected from the world.
In the forest that resides next to their home, Sarah and Chris stumble across a gigantic crater that takes up a massive part of the area. One night, Sarah discovers Chris out of his bed and she rushes off into the woods to the hole, searching for him believing that he has been abducted. However on returning home she discovers that Chris is still in the house and this leads Sarah to begin to second guess her own perspective on things.
We also learn after an examination by a doctor that Sarah has a large scar across her head that could imply that she has had some form of head trauma that may be lead to hallucinations.
Sarah slowly begins to suspect that something is not quite right with Chris and these suspicions are given further weight when the two once again discover Mrs Brady when they are out driving in the woods. Noreen bangs her head against the car window and screams that ‘he’s not your son’ which startles the pair.
The next day, Sarah goes to talk with Noreen about her claims however she finds her corpse with her head buried in the ground. From here the hallucinations come thick and fast for Sarah and she even confesses to a work colleague that she finds Chris unrecognisable. After speaking with Noreen’s husband at her wake, she becomes convinced that Chris is an imposter and when out jogging in the woods discovers one of his toys around the hole even though she gave him strict instructions not to leave the house by himself.
Sarah stares at the hole and it begins to warp and transform for her which to me is the director expressing that when you gaze into the abyss that they abyss gazes back. There’s an alternative theory on this that I’ll cover at the end of the video but for now let’s just stick to a surface level interpretation.
When confronting Chris he displays overwhelming strength and one night Sarah witnesses him running round on all floors chasing a spider before eating it. Chris’s body seems to warp and bend in strange ways and out of fear, Sarah gets him examined by a Doctor.
Whilst the Doctor finds nothing out of the ordinary Claire stills suspects something is wrong and sets up a camera in his room to records him. When watching the tape back she believes it shows proof that he is not her son and she shows it to Noreen’s husband who smashes the camera out of anger due to the grief over his son and wife resurfacing.
Claire puts sedatives in Chris’s food and challenges him to play their favourite game, stating they haven’t done it in a while. Chris blankly stares back at her as she counts down which confirms to her that he is indeed an imposter. Chris attempts once more to convince her that he is real, however after this fails, he begins to fling her about the room and attacks her with phenomenal strenght.
He eventually drags her into the forest and burys her head but due to the sedatives from earlier, passes out which gives her time to break free and take his body back to the house.
The Hole In The Ground Ending Explained
In a mirror, Claire witnesses that he is indeed a creature which is referred to in the credits as ‘it.’ Back at the house it awakens but Claire manages to hit it’s head which causes it to scream in pain and writhers on the ground.
From her she journeys to the hole in the woods and after climbing in discovers that there are a race of creatures living there that can mimic humans perfectly. Similar to their named counterpart in other horror films, these IT seems to predominantly go after children and live under the ground. There is evidence that they have been doing it for decades upon decades due to the amount of corpses in the caves and we can guarantee that James Brady was indeed a victim of them.
Claire manages to rescue Chris and revive him before returning to the house to set it on fire.
Normality returns to their lives with Clair, however, we get the feeling that she still suspects that Chris may not be who he says he is. She over analyses photos that she secretly takes of him and hangs up a large amount of mirrors in their home, signifying that the doubt and paranoia may start to creep over her once more.
The Hole In The Ground Monsters Explained
So the first question that many will have is, what are the monsters in The Hole In The Ground. Well judging by the size of crater and mass of it it appears to be from a meteorite. Thus it’s a pretty clear assumption that the monsters are Aliens.
When running to the pit we even see aircraft flying over the area and it seems strange that the director would leave this in instead of waiting for it to pass which confirms to me that they wanted to show that the area has a lot of UFOs passing over it. It seems to ominously pointing to the hole and almost like it’s being drawn in that to me it’s a pretty clear signifier of this.
Similar to aliens from The Thing and even IT which the creatures names are a reference too. They are able to shape shift and assimilate with humanity. However their goals don’t seem to be to conquer the world and therefore we can imagine that they are parasitic in nature which is why they are forced to live underground and feed off children who wander into their path.
Is Chris A Monster At The End?
Another question that viewers may have is, is Chris an alien at the end? Well, just because Sarah managed to rescue Chris doesn’t mean that she took the real one out. Remember, these creatures are incredible accurate duplicates and the fact that there was another skeleton could confirm that all she did was take out another duplicate.
Was the corpse she stumbled over Chris’s and did the creatures just send another mimic out? Well, either way, Sarah seems to have the apartment set up and be aware of this, the fact that she has moved into a more open area however means that she is putting the population more at risk if he is indeed IT.
Personally I don’t believe he is a monster and think that the film is pretty much what actually happens, unless of course my other theory is correct.
Did It Actually Happen?
One of the biggest questions that I had when leaving the film is ‘did it actually happen?’ We know that Sarah hallucinated and was on medication throughout the majority of it so a lot of the film could all be in her head. The scar on her forehead displays that she has had severe trauma which could have lead to her being out of touch with reality.
When watching the Talent show, Chris begins to sing to her directly in an unnatural way about the hole and it seems strange that no one else picked up on this.
Playing devils advocate, it could infact be Sarah who is the villain here. After all, she took her son and fled into the countryside. Perhaps Chris’s father is out there now, worried about where his son is as he knows his wife is prone to fantasy and that by being in his care he could be in danger. Sarah never even confirms the abuse dealt to her by Chris’s father so this may have not have even happened.
The ending shows that she is still paranoid and full of anxiety, willing to still distrust Chris even though she has proven to herself numerous times that he is human.
When gazing into the hole it stares back at her and does this instead reflect all the darkest parts of herself. The phrase
And if thou gaze long into an abyss, the abyss will also gaze into thee.
Comes from a book titled Beyond Good And Evil that discusses how if one is faced with the illusion of truth and is fighting it, sooner or later, one would find himself complying with the supposed “truth” because there isn’t actually a monster to begin with.
If one stares at nothingness long enough eventually they will begin to believe something is there and from this will form their own opinions similar to how Sarah did throughout the film. In the cave Sarah is grabbed by a creature that transforms into her. Could this be a symbol of her own inner turmoil that she eventually overcomes and manages to escape from due to confronting her inner demons in the cave?
It’s definitely my favourite take on the film and showcases just how complex of a character that Sarah is.
So, what were your thoughts on the ending of The Hole In The Ground? Which take do you agree with and is there anything I missed?
Comment below and let me know and if you enjoyed this video then please like it and make sure you check out my none spoiler 3 minute review on the film which will be linked at the end.