After some outstanding films such as Hereditary, The Witch and Ex Machina, I’m always excited to see A24 put out a horror film. So, when they announced that they were doing an original Irish Movie called The Hole In The Ground, naturally my interest was piqued.
However, the film falls short slightly of my expectations and whilst it doesn’t measure up to the seminal Hereditary, there are still some enjoyable and edge of your seat moments that will keep you invested in the film throughout.
The Hole In The Ground Plot
The movie itself follows Sarah and her son Chris who have moved to the remote countryside in order to get away from Chris’s abusive father. After discovering a huge, crater-like, hole in the middle of The Forrest, Sarah slowly comes under the impression that Chris is not actually her son.
Throughout the film, we are given red herrings that support whether this is accurate or not and the movie does a good job of keeping you guessing with hints that Sarah may have some form of psychosis.
Whilst this allows the first two acts of the film to be engaging, when the third one comes and with it all the reveals about the movie, it feels like it doesn’t quite deliver upon the setup with a rushed finale and final scene that doesn’t really clear things up.
We Want More
It’s rare that horror movies should go beyond 90 minutes. In the few cases that they have it’s been difficult for the film to sustain the scares, however, I actually think that The Hole In The Ground could’ve done with an extra half hour just to flesh certain things out as a lot of the answers that we get feel underdeveloped when they should probably be things that are explored the most.
Even Sarah’s backstory has a lot of unanswered questions to it and its quite frustrating not seeing these cleared up or really brought into the plot to show her self doubt.
That’s not to say it’s bad though and the fact that I want to know more of these answers cements that I was indeed invested in the narrative and willing to see what else this creepy world had to offer.
Seana Kerslake Is Outstanding
All of the performances in the film are phenomenal and both Seana Kerslake and James Quinn Markey really make you believe that they are a fractured family. Both add natural nuances to their performances that make them easy to side with and throughout the film I bounced between the two, unable to tell which one was correct in their statements about their identity.
Atmosphere is also prevalent throughout the film and the soundscape of the piece as well as the long and lingering shots that accompany it really elevate the work in an almost mesmerizing way that draws you into the landscape of the piece.
Overall, whilst this may not have secured the best horror spot for the year as I was hoping, there is still a lot to like here and I think most people will be satisfied with a lot of it even if it fails to deliver in the climax.
With all that being said, The Hole In The Ground gets a respectable…