Run time: 102 mins
In Theaters: Friday 20th April 2001
Distributed by: Miramax
Production compaines: Pathé Pictures International, Canal+, Cowboy Films, Film Council, Granada Film Productions, Impact Pictures
Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5
Rotten Tomatoes: 50%
Fresh: 8 Rotten: 8
IMDB: 6.2 / 10
Director: Nick Hamm
Starring: Thora Birch as Liz Dunn, Desmond Harrington as Mike Steel, Keira Knightley as Frances 'Frankie' Almond Smith, Laurence Fox as Geoff Bingham, Daniel Brocklebank as Martyn Taylor, Embeth Davidtz as Dr. Philippa Horwood, Steven Waddington as DCS Tom Howard, Emma Griffiths Malin as Daisy, Jemma Powell as Minnie (as Gemma Powell), Gemma Craven as Mrs. Dunn, Anastasia Hille as Gillian, Kelly Hunter as DI Chapman, Maria Pastel as Policewoman
Or do you!?
Such is the level of intelligence of The Hole, a film that contains three reasonalby big names (Thora Birch, Keira Knightley, Embeth Davidtz), but still didn't merit a theatrical release -- despite a pre-fame shot of Knightley sans shirt.
Hopelessly confusing, here's the plot in a nutshell: Thora comes running out of said bomb shelter in tears. Psychiatrists examine her and suddenly she feels fine, relating a story about how her best friend Martyn (ahem) locked Elizabeth (Birch) and Frankie (Knightley) and their two dates in the bomb shelter as some kind of sick prank. In the end, Elizabeth gets the guy to fall in love with her, as the mildly harrowing experience brings them together. They fake a sickness and finally Martyn lets them out. End of story.
Er, no. Halfway through the film, Thora has a flashback of sorts and remembers, oops, that wasn't what happened at all. Instead, it was far more sinister.and, er, like, everyone got killed and stuff.
Oh, and maybe Martyn didn't do it. Or is Elizabeth faking the (w)hole thing?
The horrors of The Hole's hopeless plot are nearly trumped by the appalling British accent that Birch puts on, but it's the ridiculous structure and unlikely setup here that makes the whole affair go down in flames. Based on a book written by an 18-year-old in 1993 and directed by the man behind Godsend, the only thing going for The Hole is a perverse need to watch as it falls apart. (A topless Keira Knightley is just an unexpected bonus that will doubtfully appear again.) The actors look desperate to do something with the movie, but as they inexplicably battle each other while they're dying of thirst in the fallout shelter, we get the feeling that they're hoping their characters will die soon so they can get off the set, fast.
Can't blame 'em.