Film Review: Foxhole

The one thing you don’t normally see depicted in fictional (or factual, for that matter) accounts of war is the sheer terror and confusion of combat situations. Different eras brought their own unique challenges, but chaos and doubt are dangerous when you’re fighting on the frontlines. Logistics and tactics rely on good lines of communication. When they’re not present, anything can happen. As is the case in Foxhole.

A foxhole is a hole in the ground used by troops as a shelter against enemy fire or as a firing point. In essence, it can simply mean a restrictive or protective space. Taking place over a short period and spanning three different timelines and wars (American Civil War, World War I and Iraq), we follow a group of soldiers who find themselves marooned with an important decision to make. The wrong choice may get them all killed.

Foxhole uses its strange premise to good effect, creating three interlinked stories which reflect the eras they’re set in. It works because writer/director Jack Fessenden does a great job of generating a real sense of dread, driven by both the claustrophobia atmosphere and riffing on the fear of simply not knowing. Is there anything really more terrifying than that? Foxhole paints a picture of war which is both constant and pure dread.

Foxhole is out in US cinemas, digital and VoD on 13 May.

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