Hollow (2012)

Hollow follows four unfortunate souls who take a holiday in the quaint town of Dunwich, deep in the heart of the Sussex countryside. Between fits of melodrama, the foursome decide to explore the local legend of the ominous hollow tree, that has caused the apparent ‘suicide’ of dozens of victims.

Delving into this ancient myth leads to discussions with a local vicar, the exploration of some religious ruins in broad daylight and the reading of some books, in between bouts of melodrama.

Then someone decides to stick his head inside the Hollow tree… and everything goes to hell; darkness, dead foxes, blood-covered phone boxes and lots and lots of screaming in the black.

Hollow is a found footage horror film.

Still here? Great, well Hollow will be huge fun and fantastically creepy if you’ve never seen a found footage film before, but most seasoned horror-watchers will find the overly-familiar tropes and action a little tired and predictable.

Hollow is a film of two halves, one decent and one truly abysmal. The turning point (from good to bad) hits us at forty minutes, when one of the characters produces a ‘bag of charlie’ and they all readily snort up Charlie Sheen‘s breakfast and act a bit ‘high’.

This drugtastic fun presumably gives the film makers a reason to ensure the characters ‘do the dumb’ and enter the aforementioned Hollow (of doom)… and chat melodramatically about their ‘troubled past’.

Unfortunately their drug-taking makes them all thoroughly loathsome, especially as white affluent people snorting charlie and breaking into churches isn’t exactly likeable viewing.

If you DO like this, however, and you can sympathize with the characters inevitable death-baiting situation then you might have a great time. But only if you like found footage films. Especially ones that do literally nothing new.

Found footage HAS to have a reason, either to create a believable situation (The Blair Witch Project) or break filmmaking boundaries (Cloverfield). Unfortunately in Hollow there are numerous occasions when the camera is running and it shouldn’t be, like an intimate and personal conversation in a parked car between two friends, filmed from the dashboard.

For all intents and purposes, the actors in Hollow are good actors, but they’re lumped with deeply flawed material that is both ridiculous and dull. The script is lacklustre and feels mostly improvised, which may be intentional but feels amateurish instead.

The major flaw with Hollow is the dull and lengthy ending, which features characters hiding inside a parked car… for HOURS. It grinds the movie to a halt and almost becomes unwatchable.

Kudos to them for creating the funniest sign in any movie, ever, which reads “Dunwich Cliffs. Beware of Dangerous Cliffs.” Genius! Oh, and if you’re hoping that the inclusion of Dunwich might mean some kind of Lovecraftian theme then you’d be wrong. It’s just a place in Sussex. With funny signs.

Overall Hollow is a sub-standard found footage film that benefits from having a decent start, an original premise (nary a mental asylum in sight!) but is severely let down by a dodgy script and seriously dragging finale.

Rating: ★★★☆☆☆☆☆☆☆

One Comment on “Hollow”

  1. Mario Smith says:

    I just saw this movie on Netflix. I do agree that the pacing was veryyy sloow. But the ending was fairly interesting albeit predictable

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