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the hex

Movie Reviews

‘The Hex’ (2020) review: Unique setting and lore balance erratic horror

Unique, yet familiar.

The Hex works with one of horror’s favorite subjects. It is often best to leave your family’s darkest secrets alone. A grieving British girl named Dilanne (Coco Lloyd) begins to unravel her mother’s secrets. She discovers that her mother had a curse put on her by a South African witch doctor. Dilanne goes to the country to remove the hex but finds herself in a dire situation.

Director Reine Swat gives her directorial debut great atmosphere. Setting the horror movie in South Africa is an interesting idea. Usually the exotic locale for an international spy romp or an action movie, setting a horror movie here gives the movie a unique feeling. It also introduces audiences to folklore that is not normally explored. There is also a constant sense of dread in The Hex. 

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The movie would be much scarier if not for the erratic pacing. There is not much gore in The Hex so it becomes reliant on other types of scares. This becomes an issue due to the constant switches between reality and hallucinations. These nightmarish moments are well shot, but they also take away from the danger to Dilanne. Since this is not a plot that questions the protagonist’s sanity, these scenes lead to a lack of suspense.

The Hex can be overly familiar at times, but the seldom used setting and lore make up for this. The film is different enough to stand out from other horror movies. The story is not deep in the same way that many horror movies are not, but it is also fun to watch for those same reasons. The film never bores the audience and there is a constant sense of intrigue.

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