Skip to main content

26th October 2021

Grimmfest 2021: Hotel Poseidon – A movie you cannot forget

Inspired by hotel horror flicks like The Shining, Hotel Poseidon is an uncomfortable and surreal exploration of one mans psyche
Grimmfest 2021:  Hotel Poseidon – A movie you cannot forget
Photo: Hotel Poseidon, courtesy of Grimmfest

Written by Mila Filipova.

Belgian director and producer Abattoir Fermé and Stefan Lernous invite us to experience a unique movie that questions our grip over reality.

The film begins as Dave (Tom Vermeir) inherits a strange hotel from his deceased father. As the film progresses we begin to realise that time appears to be stuck, trapping Dave in this strange place. Events soon go from weird to downright spooky. A young woman appears from seemingly nowhere and wants to spend the night at the hotel, whilst Dave’s best friend organises an event that includes a live autopsy and dozens of very strange guests. All the while the cadaver of his aunt remains sitting in the hallway because Dave doesn’t have the money to take care of it. 

Hotel Poseidon trailer

In the first part of the movie, we can feel the dirtiness, the process of decomposition as everything, including the people and the hotel itself, looks as if it was in decay. Most fascinating is Dave’s increasingly tenuous grip on reality. The hotel is both constantly changing and incredibly stagnant, which, combined with a sudden change to its colour palette in the latter half of the film, leads to a mismatched and often confused tone.

Hotel Poseidon will suit fans of the strange and confusing, although trying to understand it is a little bit too complicated. The director clearly wants us to use our imagination. Many elements in the picture require interpretation and evoke different explanations. While many of the scenes appear as if they existed only to confuse you, they will undeniably get you talking at the end.

Hotel Poseidon shows how a small production movie can have a deep impact. Not the scariest for sure, but an intriguing film of this year’s Grimmfest.


More Coverage

Preview: 30th ¡Viva! Festival highlights Spanish culture at HOME Cinema

Delve into the variety of Spanish-language cinema with HOME’s annual ¡Viva! film festival

Love Lies Bleeding review: “Don’t ever fall in love, okay?” | MFF 2024

Rose Glass proves falling in love is no easy feat in her vicious, sapphic crime thriller.

Queen of Bones review: Folk tale falls flat in Martin Freeman drama | MFF 2024

Witch potions, dramatic wind and a religious Martin Freeman can’t save this generic Great Depression era folk tale.

Unicorns review: A colourful portrayal of the queer South Asian community | MFF 2024

Take a journey into the queer South Asian underground with MFF’s indie drama about identity and discovery.