Saturday, July 11, 2009

sometimes i watch a lot of asian horror films

i get them all at once from netflix and have myself a grand old time with foreign horror. i dont know why i keep insisting on seeing them as i am always disappointed in the films. perhaps im trying to match the brilliance and terror of juon, ringu, tale of two sisters, or r-point but most of the time i end up sad and horny...for quality horror films. there are some gems (cello!) but most of the time, im pretty underwhelmed by the once mythic and now familiar creature known as asian horror. still, i keep renting and without the smooth supple belly of tartan asia extreme to keep me warm, i wander through the netflix lists hoping to find another infection (the movie...not the condition). i am going to go in order of least favorite to best of this round o crap.

note: from 2005 and not the waaaaaaaaaay superior 2007 version. the 2007 version is not a remake. in fact, each of them is based on a japanese urban legend. the most remarkable thing about the 2005 version is not the horror but not the steamy softcore sex. yes my film geek friends, this version of the film is a soft core porn. there are 6 soft core sex scenes shoved into the films 63 minute running time. there are no legitimate scary moments aside from the tongue in mouth close up action that the japanese love so much. netflix sold this as a pinku/horror but really its just silly no budget soft core

RED EYE (redu ai)

this sadly has nothing to do with the decent cillian murphy thriller from a few years ago. this has to do with a haunted red eye train. before you freak out, just remember that in other countries there are such things as red eye trains. go figure. anywho, this film might actually benefit from a remake. there was quite a bit of potential here but it was too bogged down in back story to keep consistent scares. that on the top of the sub par acting hampering the relative viewing enjoyment. the film is definitely terrifying in theory but the execution lacked. there was one very effective scene involving a small child wandering into fog that was superbly atmospheric. in fact, the lighting was also impressive but not too much to say other than that.

what we have is people freaking out and killing the ones they love in a brutal fashion. A+ for death scenes and an F for everything else. i like a little plot with my scares (but not too much. yeah, im hard to please)

yes i just reviewed a film called voices and now i am reviewing one called voice. they are different films with different plots. in fact, voices was in the afterdark horror fest collection from 2007 and this one was not.

anyway, voice the best of the lot and i only gave it 3 on netflix! the story involves a mysterious murder, an all girl high school and ghosts. of course there are characters with intertwining fates yadda yadda weve been there before. when it comes to asian all girl school scariness, the whispering corridors films grab me. also, much like red eye, there was too much backstory. granted, this is a movie that benefited from it but it was a bit confusing. i liked the general feel of the film and liked how there was a sympathetic ghost rather than a blood thirsty one. what really impresses me with asian horror is frequently the idea of the sad ghost. like sadako in the ring, the ghost is really just someone who wants to be heard and understood. when its done well, its results in a compelling story that is both tragic and scary. the ghost in the eye might be one of the more tragic characters in recent cinematic history. but unfortunately, in the case of voice, it was a bit heavy handed