THE ROYAL HOTEL is now on Hulu and it is definitely worth watching. It’s essentially a thriller about how we should always listen to our intuition to stay safe. Julia Garner and Jessica Henwick star. Read our full The Royal Hotel movie review here!

THE ROYAL HOTEL on Hulu is an Australian psychological thriller. I can imagine most women will watch this, and have the same experience, I did. The familiar predicament of being in a situation where you cannot leave a friend behind. However, you also can’t ignore your intuition telling you someone is “off”.

Julia Garner and Jessica Henwick star in this thriller and deliver amazing and realistic portrayals of two very different young women. Also, the movie has a brilliant supporting cast. Including Hugo Weaving (Lord of the Rings trilogy, The Dressmaker), Daniel Henshall (Defending Jacob), and Toby Wallace (Boys in the Trees).

Continue reading our The Royal Hotel movie review below. Find it on Hulu from March 14, 2024.

Welcome to the Australian Outback

The two young Americans Hanna (Julia Garner) and Liv (Jessica Henwick) are best friends, who are backpacking in Australia. Hanna and Liv are claiming to be from Canada because “everyone loves Canadians”, which is probably true, while Americans are not the most popular with the current political climate.

In any case, they run out of money in the middle of their trip, so Liv – who is definitely the more carefree of the two –convinces Hanna to take a temporary live-in job. After all, their trip is all about adventure and that would be a very different kind of adventure.

Especially as the job is tending the bar of a pub called “The Royal Hotel”. This pub is located in a very remote Outback mining town. In other words, this is a place mostly visited by men and only very few women, so their presence will be welcomed but also noticed in unwanted ways.

The Royal Hotel (2023) – Movie Review – Thriller on Hulu

Always listen to your intuition

The bar owner, Billy (Hugo Weaving), warns the girls and gives them a rude awakening to the vibe and “lingo” of the Aussie Outback. They are called the C-word upon first meeting him, and it sounds both derogatory and strangely like a nickname of sorts.

Billy and the locals give the American girls one wild introduction to Down Under drinking culture on their first day. Other days are slow, but as Hanna and Liv know from the two British girls who also worked at The Royal Hotel, it can easily become a way of life for them as well. After all, there isn’t much else to do but drink!

Fortunately, Hanna (Julia Garner) is very good at listening to her intuition and she follows her gut. If there is a lesson learned from The Royal Hotel – and there is – it is to always listen to your intuition. Worst case, you miss out on something fun and interesting. The alternative of not listening to your gut could result in it being the last thing you do!

There is one man in particular, she is very weary of. Seeing all the other men at the bar also moving out of his way, tells her that her gut feeling is right. Liv (Jessica Henwick) on the other hand, is still escaping something that happened back home.

She drinks heavily and they both find themselves trapped in a bad situation. One that grows rapidly out of their control, but they refuse to back down or give up despite being very much on their own in the Outback.

Watch The Royal Hotel on Hulu now!

The Royal Hotel is directed by Kitty Green. She has directed episodes of the Apple TV+ hit series Servant and the 2019 movie The Assistant, which also starred Julia Garner in the title role. Kitty Green co-wrote the screenplay with Oscar Redding.

This 2023 Australian psychological thriller is one of the stronger movies I’ve watched in quite some time. It is extremely scary to watch as I suspect many women (and some men) will recognize the situations Hanna and Liv are caught up in.

Also, Julia Garner (Ozark, Inventing Anna, Dirty John) is brilliant, yet again, as Hanna. And so is Jessica Henwich (The Gray Man, Love and Monsters) as Liv. She drove me crazy at times – the character, I mean – when she got too drunk and didn’t listen to her friend.

However, there was also clearly something in the past troubling Liv, which Hanna recognized.

A strong duo with Julia Garner and Jessica Henwick in the lead roles. And the strong friendship between Hanna and Liv, who never gave up on each other. No matter how terrible or dangerous, the situation got!

Womentainment recommendation: Watch it to be reminded of your own strength!

In The Royal Hotel, Julia Garner’s “Hanna” is listening to her intuition and does not back down. Sure, she might try to be soft-spoken and kind when she believes this to be the best option. However, she is always ready to deliver a more stern tone or pick up an axe, when she needs to command respect.

For me, The Royal Hotel is a great reminder for women that while the world is a dangerous place, Mother Nature has equipped us with intuition and we need to pay more attention to that. Forget that someone might feel back that you’re weary of them. Your safety should always be more important than their comfort. Always!

The Royal Hotel is out on VOD and you can stream it on Hulu from March 14, 2024.

Director: Kitty Green
Writers: Kitty Green, Oscar Redding
Cast: Julia Garner, Jessica Henwick, Hugo Weaving, James Frecheville, Toby Wallace, Daniel Henshall, Ursula Yovich, Herbert Nordrum

Official plot:

After running out of money while backpacking in a tiny, male-dominated town in the Australian outback, two friends resort to a working holiday at the Royal Hotel. When the locals behavior starts crossing the line, the girls find themselves trapped in an unnerving situation that grows rapidly out of their control.