Movie Reviews 101 Midnight Horror – The Canal (2014)

canalDirector: Ivan Kavanagh

Writer: Ivan Kavanagh (Screenplay)

Starring: Rupert Evans, Antonia Campbell-Hughes, Hannah Hoekstra, Kelly Byrne, Steve Oram, Calum Heath


Plot: Film archivist David (Rupert Evans) has been having a rough time lately, as he suspects that his wife Alice (Hannah Hoekstra) has been cheating on him with Alex (Carl Shaaban), one of her work clients. This stress is compounded when David’s work partner Claire (Antonia Campbell-Hughes) gives him a reel of to-be-archived footage that shows that his house was the setting for a brutal murder in 1902.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Tension Filled Horror


Story: The Canal starts as we meet David (Evans) and his assistant Claire (Campbell-Hughes) the pair work as film archivists and use their work to show the films of the long since dead. David moves into a new house with his wife Alice (Hoekstra) as they look to start a family, five years later they have their own child Billy (Heath).

David gets a new set of former police footage that happens to show a crime in the very house he now lives in but his personal life isn’t going much better when David starts to suspect Alice of being in the middle of an affair. When the work starts showing up in his nightmares David starts to question parts of his own reality as he wonders just what is real, what is in his head and what he will do.

When Alice goes missing the night after David finds out she has been cheating on him it leads to a police search before her body is discovered at the bottom of the canal. David becomes obsessed with the idea that there is something inside the walls of his house but just how far into madness will this drive him.

The Canal is a film that puts us into a mystery horror where we have to watch how one man becomes paranoid about his house. Each scene almost gives us a false sense because it starts going one way only to turn in completely on its head. This is great because we can enjoy the idea of trying to guess what could happen without being too clear at all. The investigation and paranoia all works to drive this story as we just get drawn into this film.


Actor Review


Rupert Evans: David is a film archivist who has been married for years and even started his own family. As married life takes its toll on the couple David finds out that Alice has been cheating on him and his work has been testing his sanity. When Alice dies David wonders what has happened a he questions his own decisions on that night. Rupert is great in the leading role as we see his paranoia come through in his performance.

Antonia Campbell-Hughes: Claire is the assistant to David who agrees to help David figure out what really happened to Alice, she has always supporting David in his decisions but this one could be too much even for her. Antonia is good in this basic supporting performance.

Hannah Hoekstra: Alice is the wife of David, she has been cheating on him for over a year and is even meant to be leaving him but when she suddenly disappears before her body is discovered it leads to David trying to find the truth. Hannah is good in this small supporting role without being too involved in the final outcome.

Kelly Byrne: Sophie is the new stay at home nanny looking after Billy, she becomes part of the family and the mother figure Billy loses. Kelly is basic in this supporting performance without getting enough screen time.

Support Cast: The Canal has a small supporting cast with most extra cast members only being involved in one or two scenes.

Director Review: Ivan KavanaghIvan gives us a horror that channels many different elements from different cultures to give us the scares through the film.


Horror: The Canal has creepily created horror scares which do have moments that remind me of Asian horror.

Mystery: The Canal gives us a mystery to try and uncover as we watch David try and uncover the truth about the canal.

Thriller: The Canal keeps us on edge with the unsettling scenes David has to go through.

Settings: The Canal keeps most of the setting inside the house by the canal which helps us show his descent into madness.
Special Effects
: The Canal has great effects to create the horror in the film.

Suggestion: The Canal is one for all the horror fans to watch, it is rewarding watch for them all. (Horror Fans Watch)


Best Part: Claire watch the film.

Worst Part: Might come off too confusing.


Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No


Oscar Chances: No

Runtime: 1 Hour 32 Minutes

Tagline: Fear will pull you under


Overall: Mind bending thriller that keeps you guessing from start to finish.