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Review: The Hollow (2004)

HollowI purchased The Hollow because there aren’t a lot of horror titles, that aren’t boring, that deal with the Headless Horseman. I needed to have at least one in my collection, and this one was the cheapest!

The Hollow is written by Hans Rodionoff (The Skulls II, Lost Boys: The Tribe) and directed by motion comic creator Kyle Newman. Cast members include Kevin Zegers (Wrong Turn, Dawn of the Dead), Kaley Cuoco (“8 Simple Rules,” “Charmed”), Backstreet Boy Nick Carter, stuntman Ben Scott (Christine, Poltergeist III, Pet Cemetery), 1x Golden Globe winner Stacy Keach (Hemmingway, Mike Hammer, “Body Bags”), 1x Emmy nominee Judge Reinhold (Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Gremlins, Beverly Hills Cop II), Lisa Chess (Star Trek: The Motion Picture, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), 2x Emmy Nominee Nicholas Turturro (“NYPD Blues,” The Longest Yard, I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry), Natalija Nogulich (Christmas Vacation, “Star Trek: Next Generation,” “Days of Our Lives”), 1x Oscar nominee Eileen Brennan (“Private Benjamin,” Clue, Jeepers Creepers), and Melissa Schuman.

“Restless spirits stir this Hollow’s Eve, beckoning Ian Cranston, the last blood relative of Ichabod Crane, back to Sleepy Hollow. Thundering hooves unleash a wave of bone-chilling screams as the ghost of the Headless Horseman rides again! Ian must try to save the town and his girlfriend, Karen and determine whether the sword-wielding stalker is their clownish classmate, Brody in costume, or the dark rider himself. If it’s truly the Headless Horseman… how do you kill what’s already dead?”

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When I popped The Hollow in my DVD player I immediately remember thinking, “My god, this is as late 90s as you can get!” Although, looking at it now I guess the correct era is early 2000s. Boy, this brought back some wicked childhood memories, mostly in the form of pop culture bewilderment. The Hollow features Kevin Zegers just after his Air Bud days. It features Nick Carter, 1/5 of the Backstreet Boys, who’ve been in existence for over 20 years and have sold over 130,000,000 records worldwide. It features Melissa Schuman, 1/4 of Dream, a one hit wonder who’s debut album went platinum and first single went gold…and then they were never heard from again. And it features Kaley Cuoco before she was a household name making $1,000,000 per episode on “The Big Bang Theory.” For this reason I think The Hollow would appeal to movie viewers in my generation who were a little more open to exploring different genres and musical styles. It’s kind of like a Halloween-y walk down memory lane.

In the same way that it showcases a lot of former teen stars, I think The Hollow is definitely aimed at a PG-13 audience. There is virtually no nudity at all, although sex is implied, and I don’t think anyone ever let a curse word slip from their lips. The only thing appealing to horror fans, because it’s about the Headless Horseman, is that there are several beheadings. However, they’re usually far off in the distance, or done with odd CGI, or done off screen and only the headless bodies are left behind. It leaves a lot to say desired, to say the least, but I actually think it’s a good fit for an audience of kids who are 13-years-old or younger. Just for me, as an adult, I was severely underwhelmed. Probably doing a little bit of research before making my purchase would have been a good idea, although, the movie isn’t a complete loss. I have a new movie to add to my collection!

When it comes down to The Hollow, I have to give it credit where credit is due. It’s directed superbly and has a mostly high production value. It has a great cast of notable faces. And there are a few parts that really make you feel like it’s Halloween season. The only problem is…it’s not intended for adults! I’m going to give it a 6 out of 10!

Written by Michael Therkelsen

(Senior Editor)