Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Andy Hui, Karena Lam, Lee Sinje, Liu Kai-chi, Annie Man
Director: Lo Chi-Leung
Genres: Indie & Art House, Horror, Mystery & Suspense
KOMA intricately weaves a jaw-clenching, teeth-grinding joyride through the darkest regions of the human psyche. A psychological thriller tackling the urban myth of organ theft from a humane perspective, Hong Kong director... more »
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Lee Armstrong | Winterville, NC United States | 06/02/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
""Koma" is a surprisingly suspenseful film. While there is enough gore to certainly warrant horror flick categorization, director Chi-Leung Law delivers a very old school Hitchcock suspense tale. Close-ups on objects like a foot dragging across the floor leaving a bloodstained trail heighten the suspense and move the story. Angelica Lee as Fung Chi-Ching, a girl who needs a new kidney and has inhibitions that keep her from fully embracing her boyfriend, does a good job and hits many levels from hysteria to jealousy to drunken delirium. Andy Hui who plays her boyfriend, Dr. Tsui Wai-man, hits a number of levels also from the guy in love to the man whose hormones outpace his common sense. As researcher Suen Ling, Karena Lam projects a person who has had a difficult upbringing and as frequently as not walks on the shady side of the street. The twists of plot that trace a kidney thief who black-markets organs for $60,000 a pop never leaves you quite settled until the final frame. Subtitled with Chinese dialog the often sparsely verbal picture translates well to an international audience. "Koma" turns out to be a pleasant, often intelligent, surprise. Enjoy!"
Focus on Character Development
Miguel B. Llora | Bay Point, California USA | 06/11/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Koma is a psychological horror thriller from Hong Kong which seems from the outset to try to appeal to a more international market. It might be cliché at times as the movie shifts focus from character to character; it does tough effectively keep you on the edge of your seat.
Koma opens with wedding reception where inebriated Ching (Angelica Lee Sinje) chances upon the victim of a kidney removal operation - kidneys being a theme in the movie. In more ways than one, it is a wake up call.
In the frequent trips to the toilet and references to her numerous nausea spells the viewer rapidly ascertains are symptoms of her malady: a kidney disorder. The kidney disorder is an interesting subtext. Ching has issues with her body and has difficulty with her nakedness in the presence of her boyfriend, the unnamed MD boyfriend (Andy Chi-On Hui). She blames herself for driving him to the needy and dysfunctional arms of medical student (and soon to be best friend) Suen Ling (Karena Lam).
Ching sees Ling (in the opening scene) who happens to be at the scene of the crime. Enough said about the plot - the viewer will just have to figure all the rest out by him/herself. The kidney issue reminds one of Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance - but that is where the similarity ends. Body parts and the acquisition thereof seem to be all the rage in Asia Extreme movies.
Most of the movie takes place in the Precious Blood Hospital (Canton) Renal Dialysis Centre and the Kidney Education Centre's Research facility giving the movie some street credibility in terms of its medical leaning. For my money, best to stick to the storyline rather than hope for medical accuracy; for that, the viewer would be better served in this area in a movie like Vital (2004).
It would behoove the viewer to stick to the more important issue of character transformation. Ching finds her "strength," Ling finds some form of "redemption/atonement," and the unnamed boyfriend - gets, well - you just need to watch to find out. The edgy "slices" into the side where the kidney is located certainly beats out mass gore ala Texas Chainsaw Massacre - it does indeed get under your skin and stays there one almost feels the slices.
Personally, I thought the movie to be both entertaining and clever - the plot twists giving way to a more interesting movie than lessons in anatomy and gore.
Urban legend gone crazy.
James Cunningham | Spring, Tx United States | 03/03/2006
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Well I was once again duped by customers rating a product to high. There is no possible way this was a 5 star movie, the plot is just not believable, especially near the end. Parts of it are quite suspenseful and the sound is very good I just had a hard time buying into the story.
spoiler: This movie is taken from the Urban legend of waking up in a tub filled with ice and a note telling you to call the police or hospital or you will die (because your kidney has been removed for sale on the black market). Well throw in a girl with a bad kidney her frustrated lover, a girl trying to raise money for her sick mother (these 3 characters create a twisted love triangle) and some guy who sets up the victims for the girl trying to raise the money for her mom. Girl A meets frustrated guy(Guy A), they have sex, Girl A meets frustrated guy's girl friend (Girl B), Girl A and Girl B become best of friends after Girl B finds out Girl A had sex with her man(Guy A). Girl A's business parter (guy B) try's to get Girl B's kidney but finds out it is bad. Girl B try's to buy kidney on black market with Girl A's help and police show up and kill Guy B. Girl A finds out Girl B tipped off the police and so she attacks Guy A because he only uses her for sex and she then removes Girl B's bad kidney and then removes her own kidney and puts it in the tub of ice with girl b as a gift. Girl A calls the police then dies. The police arrive and place Girl A 's kidney in Girl B. Girl B finds out she is ok because they put back her kidney, but it is not her kidney it is her friends (Girl A ). So she wants it removed because they are not friends anymore."
S. McGee | Brandon, Fl USA | 04/25/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Once again, Asian cinema shows Hollywood how a truly great thriller is made. Koma plays on the well-known kidney thief legend, but it turns into a white knuckle psychological thriller. Wealthy but ill socialite Chi Ching (Angelica Lee) witnesses the horrifying aftermath of a kidney theft while attending a friend's wedding. Now determined to prove that the quiet yet eerie Suen Ling (Kar Yan Lam) is the culprit, Ching finds herself pulled into tense game of cat-and-mouse. Koma benefits from stunning production, spot-on acting, and great writing. If you love Asian cinema, especially horror and thriller genres, then Koma is definitely a must-have."