THE HOLE. (2001) DIRECTED BY NICK HAMM. BASED ON THE BOOK ‘AFTER THE HOLE’ BY GUY BURT.
STARRING THORA BIRCH, KEIRA KNIGHTLEY, LAURENCE FOX, DESMOND HARRINGTON, DANIEL BROCKLEBANK AND EMBETH DAVIDTZ.
REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©
I absolutely love this film. It’s one of my favourite horror films of all time. That’s because it feeds into some very dark fears of mine about finishing my days walled up or trapped somewhere from which there’s no escape.
First the food supplies get eaten. Then there’s no more water to drink. Then the lights go off and you’re left in the dark, alone and frightened. Then the horrific process known to us as ‘death by starvation’ moves in and sets up camp.
Hi, I’m your body literally eating itself. Pleased to meet you. I’m sure we’re going to have loads of fun together. This would be a good point in the process to wake up screaming and discover you’ve been dreaming all along, having a nightmare. If you don’t wake up screaming, then, I guess, may God have mercy on your soul…
This story concerns four teenagers from a super-posh, super-expensive English boarding school (thirty thousand buckaroos a year in school fees alone!) who willingly go down into an abandoned old war bunker on school property for several days, rather than go on a stupid old geography field trip.
To them, the bunker is just a really cool place to party and smoke weed and have illicit sex for three days, in much the same way as they’d enjoy having a rave in a crumbling old deserted warehouse down by the docks for an evening.
Liz, who arranges the whole escapade with Martyn, the school’s computer genius and hacker, is ordinary and mousy-looking and desperately in love with Mike Steel, the handsome, rebellious son of rock guitarist Stevie Steel. That’s why she’s so desperate to spend a few uninterrupted days in the hole with him.
She can’t let on to him, though, that she’s in love with him, so Frankie and Geoff have to come too, for cover purposes. Frankie, played by the gorgeous Keira Knightley, is the undisputed Queen of the School. All the guys want her, all the girls want to be like her. Frankie and Liz are only friends because, well, as Frankie says, ‘My coursework doesn’t write itself, you know…!’
Posh boy Geoff, played by Laurence Fox from LEWIS with Kevin Whately, is Frankie’s big admirer. Martyn the hacker is in love with Mousy Liz, and is deeply hurt that she prefers Mike Steel, the Hollywood heart-throb, to him. But he’s still prepared to help her spend several days in ‘the hole’ with her idol, as she seems to want it so much. And here begins the nightmare…
I literally won’t tell you anything else that happens for fear of spoiling the movie for you. As the truth comes out bit by agonising bit, it’ll leave you tense and all shook up, like it did me when I watched it for the first time.
I genuinely think this is a superior horror film, and I don’t know why it isn’t more talked about. Have fun when you watch it. Oh, you’ve got a fear of enclosed spaces, have you? So much the better…
AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY OF SANDRA HARRIS.
Sandra Harris is a Dublin-based novelist, poet, short story writer and film and book blogger. She has studied Creative Writing and Film-Making. She has published a number of e-books on the following topics: horror film reviews, multi-genre film reviews, women’s fiction, erotic fiction, erotic horror fiction and erotic poetry. Several new books are currently in the pipeline. You can browse or buy any of Sandra’s books by following the link below straight to her Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B015GDE5RO
Her debut romantic fiction novel, ‘THIRTEEN STOPS,’ is out now from Poolbeg Books.