Newest Reviews
Alita: Battle Angel
We the Animals
Ibiza Undead
Wings of Eagles, The
Body Parts
Shock of the Future, The
High Life
High Noon
Comes a Horseman
Scandal in Paris, A
Fight, The
Pink Jungle, The
Double Date
Mind of Mr. Soames, The
Long Shot
Sherlock Holmes
Amazing Grace
Monitors, The
Memory: The Origins of Alien
Mesa of Lost Women
Banana Splits Movie, The
In Fabric
Sisters Brothers, The
Flamingo Kid, The
Queen, The
Avengers: Endgame
Vanishing Act
Critters Attack!
Prison on Fire
Dragged Across Concrete
Do the Right Thing
Pond Life
Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, The
Third Wife, The
Newest Articles
Python Prehistory: At Last the 1948 Show and Do Not Adjust Your Set on DVD
You Could Grow to Love This Place: Local Hero on Blu-ray
Anglo-American: Joseph Losey Blu-ray Double Bill - The Criminal and The Go-Between
Marvel's Least Loved and Most Loved: Fantastic 4 vs Avengers: Endgame
Battle of the Skeksis: The Dark Crystal Now and Then
American Madness: Sam Fuller's Shock Corridor and The Naked Kiss on Blu-ray
Flight of the Navigator and the 80s Futurekids
Trains and Training: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 13 on DVD
Holiday from Hell: In Bruges on Blu-ray
The Comedy Stylings of Kurt Russell: Used Cars and Captain Ron
Robot Rocked: The Avengers Cybernauts Trilogy on Blu-ray
Hammer's Bloodthirsty Bad Girls 1970: Lust for a Vampire and Countess Dracula
Hammer to Fall: Kiss Me Deadly on Blu-ray
Home of the Grave: The House That Dripped Blood and Asylum on Blu-ray
Wondrous Women: Supergirl vs Captain Marvel
  Hole in the Ground, The Stop The SwapBuy this film here.
Year: 2019
Director: Lee Cronin
Stars: Seána Kerslake, James Quinn Markey, James Cosmo, Kati Outinen, Simone Kirby, Steve Wall, Eoin Macken, Sara Hanly, Bennett Andrew, John Quinn, David Crowley, Miro Lopperi
Genre: Horror
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Sarah O’Neill (Seána Kerslake) is a single mother to a young son, Christopher (James Quinn Markey), who has moved to the Irish countryside to get away from a past, and a partner, she is reluctant to discuss with the new people she has met locally. On the journey home to their cottage one day, she worries that Chris is not making any friends himself at his school, and just as she is about to pursue this line of thought with him, someone steps out in front of her car, causing her to stop abruptly, just short of crashing. She gets out and approaches the man, then is disquieted to see he is a hooded figure who is whispering to himself and will not answer her questions. Sarah doesn't know what that means...

And you may not know what it means either in a horror movie that was keen to keep its mysteries potent, so even by the conclusion you were not one hundred percent sure of what had gone on. You had a fair idea, as this was not so obscure under Lee Cronin's direction that you were baffled from minute one. What he did concoct was a pleasing sense of confusion where at least you could be certain there was something not right about this situation, yet had questions as to both Sarah's sanity or, if you were more accepting of the supernatural, the safety of staying out in the middle of the forest when there were faerie folk to contend with, and they did not fit too many stereotypes.

One legend they did appropriate for this was that of the changeling, for The Hole in the Ground was one of those creepy kids movies. Ever since The Bad Seed back in the nineteen-fifties, evil children in starring roles had returned again and again to the screen, the most celebrated probably being Damien in The Omen, itself a reaction to Linda Blair's innocent possessed antics in The Exorcist, but the whole notion of those blameless little darlings actually being amoral little monsters was enjoying one of its comebacks in 2019 with contemporaries like The Prodigy and Brightburn. The Hole notion, if you will, was that Chris is not who he says he is, as Sarah comes around to the idea that he is an imposter.

Have the faeries spirited the real little boy away and replaced him with one of their own? The film kept an amusingly ambiguous approach to the last image, as there was a twisted sense of humour detectable which may be missed under the overall gloom that Sarah is making her way through. Kerslake managed to be sympathetic in a way that was not some over the top, screaming victim, but as a completely ordinary young woman who has become mired in extraordinary circumstances, be that her experiences with her son's father (who it is strongly hinted was abusive towards her, and she got out of there before became abusive towards the boy), her mental state which has been under a false sense of security since she moved to this rural area, or the possibility she has been "noticed" by sinister forces.

Some found The Hole in the Ground too slow and uneventful for its own good, yet adjust to its pace of keeping it low key to better highlight the scenes where things really got weird, and you would be rewarded. Sometimes that would be down to a scene that was so absurd in what it was depicting that it became oddly transgressive (when the Chris changeling puts his enhanced strength to good - or bad, should we say - use), though the script by Cronin and Stephen Shields did struggle a shade to wrap their plot up and put the titular hole to good use. It was a striking visual, this pit in the middle of the woods, but it did not make much of an impression on the characters until right at the final ten minutes and naming the movie after it did put Bernard Cribbins' novelty song in the head of those who recalled that. But these are quibbles: if it failed to tie up its loose threads with aplomb, it was a neat item of folk horror otherwise, another subgenre of chillers that was making a comeback from the twenty-tens. Music by Stephen McKeon.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark


This review has been viewed 150 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

Review Comments (0)

Untitled 1

Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
  Rachel Franke
Enoch Sneed
Paul Shrimpton
  Desbris M
  Derrick Smith


Last Updated: