Couple in a Hole

Tom Geens

United Kingdom, Belgium, France, 2015 / 105 min / English and French OV with French subtitles / Drama

An act of balance between stark realism and an unsettling sense of the absurd.


It's a mystery why exactly the middle aged-couple John and Karen have renounced civilization in order to live like feral creatures in a dirt cave in the woods. John hunts rabbits with his bare hands, and when such riches are unavailable, the pair sustain themselves on insects. But when a poisonous spider bites Karen, John breaks their self-imposed isolation to get help. This leads him to befriend local farmer André. As the couple's backstory unfolds, an impending sense of doom casts a pall over their small world.

A film with such a bizarre conceit as this one rises or falls on the strength of its execution — and “Couple in a Hole” soars, thanks largely to the intensely physical performances by Higgins and Dickie. (Toronto International Film Festival)

Wed 02/03 19:00 Ciné Utopia English and French OV with French subtitles Public
Thu 03/03 20:30 Cinémathèque English and French OV with French subtitles Public

“A grieving "Couple in a Hole" -- both psychological and literal -- are the focus of Tom Geens' oddball drama.” Dennis Harvey,, 25/09/2015

“Close to being in instant classic.” Charlotte O’Sullivan,, 12/10/2015

“[…] this is a poignant and freshly told film about the devastating power of isolation.” Benjamin Lee,, 17/09/2015

“Haunted performances draw viewers into this pained tableau, while peripheral action offers a slow sense of discovery to balance the oppressive mood.” John DeFore, The Hollywood Reporter, 19/09/2015

“Geens proves skilful at sustaining intrigue, assisted by his sparse cast, with a performance from a rake-thin Dickie which is entirely untainted by vanity.” Charles Gant,, 05/10/2015

  • 3 Awards, Dinard British Film Festival, 2015 (France)
Cast & Credits
Paul Higgins, Kate Dickie, Jérôme Kircher, Corinne Masiero
Tom Geens
Sam Care
Christophe Penchenat
Richard Campling
O11 Productions Ltd., The Chicken Factory
Paradiso Entertainment België

Born in Belgium, Tom Geens graduated in politics/economics and postgraduated in theatre studies. He has been living in London since 1993. Tom Geens made a name for himself with a series of meticulously crafted shorts, and a first feature (“Menteur”, 2009) that pushed genre boundaries and showed him to be a deconstructor of social norms along the lines of Michael Haneke or Thomas Vinterberg “Couple in a Hole” (2015) is his latest film which received 3 awards at the 26th Dinard British Film Festival.

  • 2015, Couple in a Hole
  • 2009, Menteur (Liar)
  • 2009, You're the Stranger Here (short)
  • 2007, Selected Shorts#6 : The Best Flemish Shorts of 2006 (film segment director)
  • 2006, Shame (short)
  • 2005, Wrong (short)
  • 2005, Medelijden (short)
  • 2003, Please (short)