Search - Cello (2005) on DVD

Cello (2005)
Actors: Hyeon-a Seong, Da-an Park, Ho-bin Jeong, Jin Woo, Na-woon Kim
Director: Woo-cheol Lee
Genres: Indie & Art House, Horror
UR     2006     1hr 34min

After surviving a terrifying car wreck mi-ju a brilliant cellist longs for a peaceful life as a college music teacher. But when horrifying memories of the accident begin to surface her life quickly becomes a nightmare. A s...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Hyeon-a Seong, Da-an Park, Ho-bin Jeong, Jin Woo, Na-woon Kim
Director: Woo-cheol Lee
Genres: Indie & Art House, Horror
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Horror
Studio: Tartan Video
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Closed-captioned,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 07/25/2006
Original Release Date: 01/01/2005
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2005
Release Year: 2006
Run Time: 1hr 34min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 2
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: Japanese
Subtitles: English, Spanish

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Movie Reviews

Okay..lets get it out there
Chevy Chase | atlanta, ga | 08/29/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This movie is good!
Okay..Okay.. so its the same old revenge story by freaky black haired chick. I know.
But lets take a look at what this movie offers.
First off, no holds barred, original and graphic kills.
I mean come on..when was the last time a whole family got killed off.
Beautiful set pieces and air of unrelenting menace surround this flick.
This ghost is out for revenge..not just the come through the TV and poop scare ya to death kind. I'm talking about the whole enchalada. The last time I've seen a ghost this pissed off it was..hell I can't remember the last time I saw a ghost that pissed off.
A nice twist of events..and no I'm not talking about the ending.
I mean the part where we really see who was to blame for all of the mayhem.
So genre fans..not just Japanese Horror Genre Fans either..rejoice. Here is a ghost story to wrap your bed sheet around.
Okay, none of my reviews would be complete without a little negativity.
At times, the movie did feel as if it were a little been there..done that.Especially with the ghost being so Ringuish like. The final scene was not as explorative or explained as it should have been. I mean, give us a break..we just sat through 2 or more hours of watching this womens family get killed off in hellish ways and now it ends on a made for TV movie instant replay.
Do not let these qualms stop you from watching this movie.It is
a non stop spooky ride and one you will be glad that you got off sane and sound when its over.
Just a hint..If your daughter all of a sudden grows real attached to a Cello..Ship that sucker to Bangkok. The Cello, I mean not your daughter."
What's Next, Haunted Red Shoes?...Oops!
Ernest Jagger | Culver City, California | 10/24/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)

"Once again, Korea has given their viewers a beautiful film in terms of cinematography. In fact, I find most Korean films these days visually stunning. However, this has never been a problem. What many of these horror films lack are real scares. Sure, ambiguity is nice once in awhile, and the revenge factor works now and then. But how about something totally different? Now, in all fairness, I do believe that Korean horror and suspense films are still a notch above what we in America churn out on a daily basis. But, these films are becoming so formulaic, that I find it hard to really like many of the films coming out of the Korean horror industry these days. That is not to say that some viewers will not like this film.

For me the film itself lacks the suspense and horror that I really look forward too in this genre. Having written this, I will write that "Cello" is better than many films that have been released in recent years from Korea--yet that is not saying much, as so many are so similar. Yes, they are much better than most of the horror films here in the States, but one keeps hoping that they will make a breakout with some really captivating and scary films that will capture the world with the same unique quality that their dramas, and suspense films have been able to do. Moreover, the talent in both the acting, and the directing is definitely there. Yet, by continuing to churn out the same formulaic horror films at a rapid rate, they are going to suffer the same fate that American horror films now find themselves in: Stale and turgid.

"Cello" is not that bad of a film. If anything it is watchable. I would just like something a little bit more than "well it was worth a watch." Anyway, the films narrative is more like a drama, with very little to non-existent horror. The film centers around a woman named Hong Mi-ju (Hyeon-a Seong) who is a former Cello player. Due to a tragic car accident, she injures her hand---and as a result, she gives up playing the Cello, and instead becomes a music instructor. [One more thing I would like to add, the Korean horror/suspense genre has pretty much played out the classical music in their films, however, the sound of the cello is beautiful]. Further, there is something that still haunts Mi-ju in regards to her past: For it was in this car accident that her good friend and cello rival Tae-yeon Kim (Da-an Park) was also killed.

Trying to forget this terrible incident and get on with her life, she finds herself saddled with a difficult student who is upset with the grade she has been given. Given a cassette tape from an unknown source, her past begins to haunt her again. Is Mi-ju being haunted by the spirit of her dead rival? And what about the student? How does she fit in? But there is more to the narrative. With a new servant in the house who is mute, and a daughter who begins learning how to play the cello, the film veers into more of a dramatic suspense film with the various characters that are introduced into the film. The film does drag a bit, and plays out more like a drama. And if you have seen Korean horror or thriller films you will notice there is nothing really new here. Once again, this is not a bad film, but it is not a good film either. Somewhere in between. I recommend that viewers rent the film first. It may not appeal to many viewers. [Stars: 2.5]"
If you're looking for something a little different...
hollygolightly | New York, New York | 11/30/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Before I watched Cello, I thought I was scraping the bottom of the K-horror barrel...a movie about a haunted musical instrument sounded kind of lame. I was wrong; it was surprisingly good. Hong Mi-Ju is an emotionally fragile music teacher whose past comes back to haunt her--or is it all in her head? The story unfolds like a Twilight Zone episode.

If you get impatient with some of the Asian horror conventions (an insistence on cheesy effects when CGI would be better, unresolved major plot elements) then this might be more your speed. The body count is as high, and as bloodily graphic, as a Hollywood horror flick, and while there are weaknesses in the story--I'm still not sure what the housekeeper was doing there--the ending isn't a baffling existential statement. It's not as nuanced as a movie like A Tale of Two Sisters, but it doesn't require cliff notes to understand, either."
It's a good film if you compare it to the others.
Jenny J.J.I. | That Lives in Carolinas | 08/21/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)

"The cover of this DVD is very appealing but not so much the film. "Cello" is another entry into the Asian horror genre; the South Korean Cello tries to distance itself from the pack by focusing more on the story than predictable scares. Unfortunately,this only half-works. We are treated to a rich drama involving a former cellist-turned-music instructor, her family, her tragic past and her seemingly slipping sanity, but the scares are almost non-existent.

Mi-Ju is a part-time music professor with a tragic past. When she was younger, she was an up-and-coming cellist, until she was in a car accident with her rival/best friend, Tae-yeon. After Tae-yeon died, Mi-Ju gave up playing the cello and decided just to teach. One day, one of her students threatens her after receiving a bad grade and so begins Mi-Ju's problems. She is sent a mysterious cassette tape that contains a haunting cello duet that dredges up some painful memories of Tae-yeon and almost causes her to get into a car accident. She is distant from her loving family which includes her two daughters, husband and sister-in-law. Her older daughter is mentally disabled and mute, but falls in love with a cello she spies in a window. Mi-Ju buys it for her and begins to teach her how to play it. Meanwhile, a new maid moves into the house. She is creepy as hell and is also mute. It seems as though her family was killed in a car crash and she tried to commit suicide numerous times, once by swallowing acid. No more vocal cords there! Anyways, things start to get creepy slowly but surely...the family's golden lab, Sunny, begins barking all the time until one morning he is found dead. Mi-Ju starts seeing things, her daughter begins playing that haunting song on the cello, the sister-in-law goes crazy after her fiance breaks up with her and "accidents" befall the household

I found this different than most typical Asian horror films. The story is much more rich, with well-developed characters but it doesn't focus much on typical Ju-On or Ringu-type scares. The terror doesn't really begin until the last 20 minutes of the film, giving only glimpses of what or who is terrorizing Mi-Ju and her family. Like most Asian films, it does focus on building tension through the atmosphere. The atmosphere is nicely complemented by the gorgeous cinematography and the soundtrack (heavy on the use of the cello, of course). This is a slow film, but if you can live without the wham-bam-thank-you-ma'am speed of most films today, I recommend Cello. Some claim the film is slow and redundant, but unlike most films where repetitiveness is a time-filler, the repeating themes throughout Cello actually stand for something; in this case, the nightmare that Mi-Ju relives over and over through the different tragedies she suffers. This theme also plays flawlessly into the twist ending.

Cello does have its flaws and I wouldn't be so quick to add it to my collection, but it is definitely worth your time if you appreciate this type of cinema.