Fairy tales have existed since the beginning of storytelling but many are unfamiliar of their original purpose. From Grimm to Aesop most of these stories of talking creatures and mystical beings were created to teach lessons or instill fear. Sometimes they were used as a scare tactic to keep people away or to leave something alone. In Corin Hardy’s THE HALLOW (THE WOODS) family runs across an ancient evil that is not happy with their meddling of their existence. A gritty and fantastic looking creature feature, what THE HALLOW lacks in excitement it makes up for in effects.
Adam Hitchens(Joseph Mawle) is having a tough time being welcomed by a small irish community as he explores the outside woods. The townsfolk constantly warn him about the dangers that exists in these woods but he has a job to do. When his actions lead a set of demons to his front door THE HALLOW becomes a film of survival. He and his wife Clare(Bojana Novakovic) must not only deal with what’s waiting outside their home but a THING like epidemic spreading between the two of them. The look and feel of THE HALLOW is the most rewarding part that will draw viewers in. The lore surrounding the demons is something I would have enjoyed them focusing more on but you get a clear understanding early that these creatures are not to be messed with. Mawle and Novakovic hold down impressive performances and even though the film isn’t slow it just seems to be missing something. The creatures and special effects are great so monster movie fans will surely get a kick out of THE HALLOW. This is one of those IFC Midnight titles that may not be loved by all but will surely find its proper audience.
THE HALLOW is a very well done horror film. It’s really hard to put a finger on what was truly lacking in the production so it may require more than one watch. It walked a fine line between boring and spectacular which leaves the viewer slightly unsatisfied at the end. Still it’s worth a watch a glance to be reminded that not all tales from a forgotten time are worth investigating.
THE HALLOW is directed by Corin Hardy and stars Joseph Mawle, Bojana Novakovic, Michael McElhatton and Michael Smiley. THE HALLOW is no available on demand courtesy of IFC MIDNIGHT.