29 September 2015

THE HALLOW (/Slash Filmfestival 2015)

THE HALLOW

Alternate Title:
The Woods

Working Title:
The Good People

UK / Ireland, 2015
Director: Corin Hardy

6/10





"The Hallow", the debut feature of Irish filmmaker / music-video director Corin Hardy is a solid, yet slightly underwhelming creature feature, taking place in a remote Irish area where a conservation biologist and his family fall prey to an odd parasitic fungus, as well as to a couple of fairy-like creatures that live in, and protect an age-old near-by forest.

I'm not saying that the movie's basic plot / folklore concept is entirely unique, but Hardy gives it a fresh and clever spin that makes it distinguishable from, and more original than most creature flicks of the last years. Too bad that the writing and the overall execution isn't strong enough, otherwise this totally could have made an almost "Babadook"-like impact on audiences.


In terms of mood and atmosphere, "The Hallow" reminded me a lot of the underrated Irish 2010 flick "Wake Wood", though while this little gem was thoroughly quite satisfying, "The Hallow" is a mixed bag, due to the rather haphazard and messy screenplay [written by Hardy and Felipe Marino ("Madame Bovary")], too many worn out jump scares, illogical plot points, twists and character decisions, as well as some dull pacing in the middle. There are several scenes that start out extremely suspenseful, but quickly become a tad boring, as well several scenes that simply last too long and deliver utter boredom
instead of a 'bang'.

Gladly, Hardy also gives us a high amount of stunningly designed creatures and terrific practical effects in the second half (best of all: the incredibly realistic-looking creature-girl!), plus some impressive lighting, unexpectedly intense body-horror and a pretty emotional climax. The acting is also damn fine, most notably the performances of Joseph Mawle ("The Awakening") and the wonderful-as-always Michael Smiley ("Burke & Hare"). All in all, not an uber-must-see,
but definitely worth checking out.

3 comments:

  1. I quite like the sound of this one :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yeah, there's always room for one more monster movie...

    ReplyDelete

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