Jefferson N. from BLAIRSVILLE, GA Reviewed on 8/1/2011...
The Eye 2 is one of the best horror movies, Asian or otherwise, I have seen recently. It's about a young woman who has broken up with her boyfriend and tries to kill herself. She's resuscitated and shortly thereafter starts seeing ghosts. She also learns she is pregnant. And one ghost in particular seems to be stalking her.
This is one of the most original and beautiful movies I've seen in a long time. It's not nearly as predictable as one would think of one of these Asian horror movies. Yes, it has thrill and chills and ghosts come and go across the screen. But along with this is a truly wonderful story of life, death, karma, and redemption. I didn't expect much, since this genre was getting VERY predictable by the time this movie came out, but I was pleasantly surprised with this one. It rises above being a mere horror movie and beomes something closer to classic films like Wings of Destiny than just another Ringu clone. This is a must-see film! I will warn anyone with a weak stomach watching this that it does have some gory scenes and there are some creepy images in the film. But if this doesn't bother you, please don't miss this one!
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bonsai chicken | United States | 09/10/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"With THE EYE being among my favorite scary movies ever, I was looking forward to this film with both excitement and trepidation. The promising side was that the Pang Brothers helmed this film as well, rather than turning it over to someone else. But we know how sequels tend to go, especially if the original cast does not return.
As it turns out, that isn't a problem, because THE EYE 2 is a sequel only in the most general sense. It, too, concerns a woman who begins seeing ghosts. (The literal translation of both films' original title - JIAN GUI - is "Seeing Ghosts.") Otherwise, this film is completely unrelated. Joey Cheng (Shu Qi - THE TRANSPORTER, GORGEOUS) is an outwardly tough but emotionally fragile young woman who has just ended a relationship with a married man. After a failed suicide attempt she starts to see phantoms wherever she goes -- in particular, one ghostly woman who seems to be following her around.
In some ways, THE EYE 2 is a better film than its predecessor. It's not as frightening (though it has its moments) but it strives to be something more than a straight-ahead thriller. It's about a woman facing an unwanted, unexpected pregnancy alone. It delves into eastern philosophy and themes of karma and reincarnation. It's just a different movie altogether, and viewers should go in expecting that. The distinctive style of the Pang Brothers is still ever-present.
Lion's Gate has released a nice DVD package of this film. Extras include a thirteen-minute behind-the-scenes feature which sheds light on the creators' intentions and trailers for AUDITION, INFECTION, PREMONITION, JU-ON, THE DEVIL'S REJECTS and more. The movie looks and sounds fantastic (5.1 surround is strongly suggested if you have it available.)
Since both films are independent stories, you don't need to watch them in any particular order, but both are recommended."
Lee Armstrong | Winterville, NC United States | 10/04/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Directed by the Pang Brothers, "The Eye 2" is a gripping Asian film. It has a bit more substance than a strict horror genre. Some of that is due to the excellent performance of Shu Qi who was riveting in "The Transporter" with Jason Statham and also in "Millennium Mambo." As Joey Cheng, she plays an emotionally traumatized woman whose relationship is breaking up. We see her try to choose between a dark green or light green tie for her boyfriend, go on a wild shopping spree, and then intentionally overdose on sleeping pills. Her attempted suicide combined with her pregnancy give her access to other-worldly visions of ghosts. Her boyfriend Sam played by Thai actor Jesdaporn Pholdee is apparently torn between two women. His wife played by Eugenia Yuan became so stressed when she learns that he has a mistress that she threw herself in front of a train. Joey encounters the ghost in a train station and tries to prevent her suicide, not realizing that she is now able to see the dead. Joey sees the woman haunting her and stalking her unborn baby. The film is punctuated by otherworldly scenes of ghosts swimming through air trying to enter the womb of pregnant women with one in a stalled elevator being particularly scary. The film seems like it might end about 4 times, but each time the screen goes to black and the film keeps coming back. Joey's final tragic leap scene makes one believe that there must be such a thing as soft concrete. "The Eye 2" has its share of scares, but also has excellent character development from the three lead actors and an excellent expansion mechanism like a psychic mystery story in its screenplay. Enjoy!"
More than the eye can see
E. A Solinas | MD USA | 01/08/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"It should be a good thing that the ones doing "Eye 2" are the Pang Brothers, who created the first. And it should be good that it technically isn't a sequel to the first "Eye" movie.
But the Pang Bros don't quite catch lightning in a bottle for "Eye 2," which has some wonderful horror moments and unique twists, but has a rather predictable plot and a heroine who just seems to lack that certain something. It's an entertaining horror flick, but it's not all it could have been.
After a huge shopping spree, Joey Cheng (Qi Shu) ODs on pills because her married lover has dumped her. Fortunately she's found in time, and after a stay in the hospital, she heads back to China -- where she finds that she's also pregnant. But even creepier, she's starting to see people -- and creatures -- that aren't there.
But she can't just see them -- one of them saves her from a rapist, and she sees another trying to enter the body of a newborn baby. The increasingly unstable Joey doesn't know how to keep the the ghosts from attacking her baby, and she'll take drastic action to keep them from succeeding...
"Eye 2" is actually more fascinating as a study of Buddhist philosophy (only touched on in the first movie) than as a horror movie. In fact, the Pang boys drop a giant hint about the ghosts' intentions early on, so expect to know what's going on long before Joey ever figures it out -- lots of karma and atonement here.
Danny and Oxide Pang manage to conjure up a very creepy atmosphere at times, with traditional Korean spooks, a rape scare and a healthy dose of blood'n'gore, as well as the grey-faced dead who hang around pregnant women. Unfortunately the plot is a bit flat, without much mystery or suspense -- it's basically a series of scenes where Joey sees ghosts and acts crazily. Creepy, but rather plotless.
Nor is Joey a particularly compelling character -- she seems rather unstable to start with (with the repeated suicide attempts and adulterous affairs), although she's a bit more likable by the finale. And Qi Shu does a decent job with her, almost overacting but usually staying behind the line, even when she's screaming about ghosts under the table.
"The Eye 2" suffers from a slack middle section, but the beginning and ending (and some of the ghost scenes) are wonderful and quite creepy. Worth watching, though the plot is lacking."
Predictable yet surprising
L. Lestha | Uxbridge, MA USA | 09/06/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Having seen and loved "The Eye" (which, I feel, had the single best suspense scene I have EVER seen in a horror movie... but I won't tell you which scene it is ), I willingly took a "chance" with "The Eye 2." The two films have a similar feel, similar styles, and a similar theme, but are different enough that you won't think you're just watching a re-hashed version of its predecessor. Even more than the first "The Eye", I find the second movie almost hard to classify as "horror." Yes, there are some horrific scenes, startles, suspense, gore, and some disturbing images (children semi-splattered on the street, for example -- so let that be a warning to the very faint-of-heart) but the movie also has a pleasing symmetry to it and a surprisingly touching ending; traits the first movie also shared. In fact, I was literally moved to tears at the ending. (Mind you, I can sit through the goriest movie without batting an eye. However, yes, I can be reduced to snivelling if a movie pulls the right heart-strings.)
I mentioned "predictable" because the narrative actually tells you what's going on if you simply pay attention. To me, it was clear about half-way (or a bit more) through the movie, which left me with that frustrating feeling of waiting for the character in the movie to "catch up" and finally "get it." Mind you, that's not necessarily a bad thing. I simply don't know if it was deliberate on the part of the film-makers or not. In other words, was the "surprise" spoiled for me because I figured it out in advance or was it deliberately designed so the audience was supposed to know before the main character (and thus lending to a completely different type of tension)? Because so many clues were given outright, I must conclude that it was a deliberate decision to let the audience in on the "secret" in advance. Although this tactic did reduce the "surprise" factor, there were enough other "ahhh!" moments of revelation that were well played and satisfying.
Unlike many Asian horror movies, I find the Pang brothers' movies much easier to follow in terms of narrative and character and thus much easier to enjoy. You're not left scratching your head in consternation, wondering what you just saw and thinking you must have missed some subtitles because the ending made no sense and came to no conclusion. Both "The Eye" movies have very clear plots, with a starting point at which the world starts to go terribly wrong, a build-up of the mystery and suspense, then a careful unfolding of the mystery in a way that is a bit like a detective story (the audience 'experiences' the exposition along with the lead character), and finally an actual conclusion that is, I feel, satisfying.
Personally, I liked the original movie better but not because the second one lacked anything. It's simply like choosing between two flavors of ice cream that you really like. I did find the lead character of the first movie more likable and could relate to her better but that was an aspect of the character and not the acting because the acting in both movies was excellent.
I hope there will be a third movie and I hope that it will be yet another delicious "flavor" to savor like the first two have been.
(Warning: Movie is a definite R rating. No bad language, no nudity that I remember, but very adult themes (pregnancy, abortion, suicide, rape, etc.) Blood and gore. Some horrifying death scenes. Not for the faint-of-heart or overly squeamish. Nevertheless, "The Eye" movies are NOT Western-style slasher splatter-fests. It doesn't flinch from gore but it also doesn't revel in it the way too many 'Western' horror movies do.)"
Pang Bros' non-sequel doesn't hold up.
Robert P. Beveridge | Cleveland, OH | 09/21/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"The Eye 2 (Oxide and Danny Pang, 2004)
The Pang Brothers return with what is ostensibly a sequel to their breakout hit The Eye. Whoever decided to market this as a sequel, however, really messed up. Taken as a film independent of its far superior older brother, this might well have been a lot better received than it ultimately was. This is not to say there's nothing other than marketing wrong with it, but that would have gone a long way towards making it a better experience.
The plot: Joey (Millennium Mambo beauty Shu Qi) is pregnant by her former boyfriend, and doesn't know what to do about it. She attempts suicide and, after failing, she begins to see ghosts. These ghosts seem to have a thing for hanging around pregnant women...
It's not a bad little story, for what it is, and the ending (which you can probably see coming a mile away) is positively heartwarming, if you're into that sort of thing. The problem is that what could have been an interesting drama with some supernatural aspects (see, for example, the fantastic The Uninvited) is relentlessly approached as a horror film, complete with utterly gratuitous shock scenes, that are way out of kilter with the basic storyline. When I have to bend my mind in directions it doesn't normally stretch to figure out how a scene fits into an otherwise straightforward movie, I'm working too hard to be enjoying it.
It doesn't bear comparison with the original film, but the movie's connections opened the door when they decided to make it a sequel. Simply put, aside from the remarkable directorial powers of Oxide and Danny, which infuse the film with the usual ambiance one finds in a Pang movie, nothing about this movie is remotely in the same realm of excellence found throughout The Eye. The acting (with the exception of Shu Qi's) is pedestrian, the script is lackluster if sporadically inspired, the special effects are, well, often just there for the sake of having special effects. Not to deny some of the are pretty cool, but why are some of them there?
Worth seeing if you've nothing better to do, but you're better off renting the original and watching it again. ** ½ "