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Hellhole review – why is this religious horror interesting but boring?

October 27, 2022

The post Hellhole review – why is this religious horror interesting but boring? first appeared on Ready Steady Cut.

October 2022 saw the release of Netflix horror film Hellhole – this is our official spoiler-free review.

In 1987 Poland, a police officer investigating mysterious disappearances infiltrates a remote monastery and uncovers a dark truth about its clergy. The horror movie, hell holewas co-written and directed by Bartosz M. Kowalski, and it sets an eerie vibe from the start of the film. It shows a priest about to kill a baby with a strange mark on his chest. From this scene we know the baby will be special, and like all religious horror movies there is a connection to the devil.

Kowalski then returns to the present day in a sanatorium. A new priest named Marek (Piotr Zurawski) goes to the clergy because they are looking for an exorcist. The Sanatorium is famous for exorcismand they control the priests who come to the area.

The lighting in hell hole is dark, and it’s strange when they walk through the halls of the Sanitorium. The priests all gather to eat in the main hall and serve something quite disgusting. Marek doesn’t take meals well and strange things start to happen to him when he’s alone in his room. He does not digest food properly and begins to hallucinate. We find out that Marek is an undercover cop sent to investigate the Sanitorium because eight women have gone missing due to exorcisms. The only way the cops can get in and talk to Prior Andrzej (Olaf Lubaszenko) is to pose as a priest. He discovers the problems with this clergy and how unconventional their methods are.


It’s interesting to see how the priests conduct these exorcisms because they’re different from the others we’ve seen on screen. The practical effects in hell hole worked for the most part, as the young girl struggling while chained to the bed was scary. Even the change of perspective with the video camera to show footage of his possession was an interesting choice.

While we can commend Kowalski for doing something interesting, the investigation was a bit boring as the story moved slowly. Malek also discovers that the exorcisms are fake, which makes everything even more suspicious.

Some great moments will make you feel gross because of what happens to Malek every time he eats a meal with them. But by the time we find out Malek is the chosen one and the clergy want to perform one last ritual, it’s too late in the film for the pieces to work.

Towards the end of hell hole, the clergy become more sadistic and perform the ritual on Malek. The creature design looked great, and seeing something like that come from the depths of hell to tie the movie into its religious themes worked as well. It’s standard religious horror with a bit of a twist that isn’t so engaging. Kowalski’s direction was strong in the first half, but the story wasn’t strong enough. It fizzes at the end, even though the creature that comes out looks interesting.

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What did you think of the Netflix horror movie Hellhole? Comments below.

More stores on Hellhole

  • Hellhole’s ending explained

The post Hellhole review – why is this religious horror interesting but boring? first appeared on Ready Steady Cut.