Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Kim Ha-neul, Gi Ju-bong, Ryu Jin-ok, Nam Sangmi, Shin Lee
Directors: Kim Tae-kyung, Kim Tae-gyun
Genres: Indie & Art House
(Horror) Ji-won is a bright young student with amnesia. She has no recollection of who she is, her friends or her life before the incident. When her old friends mysteriously start dying one by one, she begins to investi... more »
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SLOWER BUT MORE CEREBRAL THAN THE GRUDGE
Tim Janson | Michigan | 06/15/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The Ghost or "Ryeong" is a new Korean horror film, part of the Tartan Asia Extreme line. The film is shackled with the tag line "The Grudge meets Dark Water" and that does a real disservice to the film for a number or reasons. The Ghost doesn't have nearly the scare factor of The Grudge but it has vastly superior characterization and a more complex plot. While the Grudge was a straight horror film, The Ghost is more of a mystery with horror elements.
Min Ji-Won is a student suffering from amnesia. She experienced a traumatic event a year ago and has lost all memories of her past. Something terrible happened but everyone around her avoids revealing the details. Min plans to leave her home and go to school far away to try and get her life back together. This results in an angry conflict with her mother who doesn't want to be left alone and assails Min with a guilt trip. Meanwhile her sometimes boyfriend, Park, does his best to get Min to carry on with life, but he's also unwilling to tell her about her past.
Min has become something of a pariah at school, avoided by her former friends. When those friends end up dying, one by one, apparently of drowning, Min begins experiencing visions and flashbacks. She visits one of her friends who has been hospitalized in a psych ward and she learns about Su-in, who was bullied and humiliated because her family was poor. A shaken Min realizes that she was the ring-leader of her school clique that tormented Su-in, often pretending to be her friend just so they could embarrass her later. A desperate Min tries to unravel the events that led to the tragedy and her loss of memory but Min may not like what she finally uncovers.
The Ghost also gets compared quite a bit to The Ring and yes, we do have that ubiquitous long, dark haired female ghost out for revenge but that's where the comparison ends. There's a distinctly different feel to The Ghost than The Ring and other Asian films. The Ghost really go doesn't go for the quick scares that make you jump out of your seat, preferring a more cerebral approach. You quickly find yourself caught up in wanting to know what happened to Min a year a go that caused her to loser her memories. The ghost became secondary to Min's situation.
Ha-Neul Kim as Min draws upon our sympathies for her dilemma and then promptly turns things upside down when we find out that Min wasn't such a nice girl to begin with. Just when you think things have been resolved, an unexpected twist near the end will change your whole view of the film.
I thoroughly enjoyed all of the performances in The Ghost, especially Ha-Neul Kim's and Ran Choi's, who played Min's rather twisted mother. The soundtrack reminded me of old school horror films that had that pulse-pounding quality to it. I suppose The Ghost could be criticized for being a bit slow in spots and it's a valid point. On the other hand I appreciated Director Tae-kyeong Kim's clever plot and character development. Certainly this is a different film than other Asian horror films but give it a chance, I think you will be surprised.
z hayes | TX | 04/25/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This Korean horror flick is not very different from some of the other Korean horror movies that have flooded the market recently, but it is still worth a watch. Yes, there is the familiar long-haired spectre that haunts the victims in this movie, but the plot is compelling. It revolves around a college student Ji Won who is suffering from amnesia after a terrible accident. She sees troubling visions, and then some of the girls she knew from before the accident start to mysteriously die...i won;t give too much away, but suffice to say that just as you are figuring things out, there is a twist towards the end of the movie involving the concept of reincarnation & possession. Worth a watch for any Asian horror fan."
A very good movie
Catherine Perez | 07/11/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I realy liked this movie. I don't think this movie is cliche or follows the basic patterns of other asian horror movies. It might be slow at some times, but the other parts of the movie more than make up for it. Throughout the movie it makes you wonder "What the hell is going on?!" and when you think you figured it out, the end twist blasts your mind away(or at least it did mine). I also liked the fact how most things are explained, unlike american horror movies, by the time it ended. I also like how they made it so you can feel sympathy for the ghost(or at least at first...), and having general charractor developemant all around. One more thing I like is how they give "hints" and "tells" before the "big revreal". If you watch enough asian horror movies, you might figure it out: I know I didn't.
Overall I would realy recomend this movie to watch. I believe it is as good as Silk and The Eye."
Typical Korean horror--- in a good way.
C. Sis | Ketchikan, Alaska United States | 12/03/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Many people criticise Asian horrors for the over use of female black-haired ghost, but... how many of those that stray from the path are actually good? Just saying "Well, the IDEA was good" or "It COULD have been good" doesn't cut it.
This movie is very typical in this genre, but if you don't like the ghost movies why are you even watching? I found this one to be great, with not too slow of a pace and an ending that makes you say "What the hell happened?" --- in a good way."