Asian Horror with intelligence and sensitivity
Dancing Ganesha | Bangalore, India | 06/05/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"While there are some cliches apparent in this film, it's also amazing that some of the scenes in it have been used for newer releases like "The Shadow of The Wraith," for one. I am constantly finding that good films are always a minefield for our current horror directors. Of course, "Inner Senses" is also reknown for its real-life tragedy, the fact that Mr. Cheung committed suicide (almost re-enacting his own attempt to suicide in this film) is a constant reminder for his fans.
This is, in my opinion, one of the finest in Asian horror cinema that can be found. It is explores the inner workings of the mind and reveals a sensitivity that is rare in horror. Multi-layered and full of depth, this film has unfortunately been compared to "The Sixth Sense." While it does share some similarities, it's also quite easy to remember that most horror films share similarities, and the borrowing of ideas, in the past and now, has always been a hallmark of the creative person's life, whether one is a writer/poet, visual artist, or musician."
I actually enjoyed it...
L. C. Tomas | Panama, Panama | 06/24/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I found it to be quite surprising and moving towards the end. The scary parts of the movie never seem forced, and the basic premise that our own repressed memories and guilt can conjure up horrors far worse than any "real" ghosts can is what sets this movie apart from most of it's suspense or horror counterparts. Leslie Cheung gives a great performance, making this a fitting Swan Song, but Karina Lam carries the movie for most of the first half in such an admirable fashion that she deserves kudos as well."
Healing The Trauma Of The Past: Ghosts Or No Ghosts
Ernest Jagger | Culver City, California | 08/25/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Inner Senses," is a highly recommended film. The film gives the viewer the suggestion of horror, and does so in a way that is refreshing. Are there ghosts? Or does our mind play tricks on us? Do we see what we want to see? Or are there unforeseen forces in the universe? The film begins with Jim Law (Leslie Cheung) who portrays a psychiatrist. We see that Jim is overworked, and never has time for himself. He immerses himself in his practice helping others. One of his newest patients is suicidal woman who claims to see ghosts. This patient, Yan, (Kar Yan Lam) gives an excellent performance as a disturbed young woman. She has been referred to Dr. Law by his friend and colleague, Dr. Wilson Chan (Waise Lee). Dr. Chan's connection to the young women is personal: Yan is a relative of his wife, therefore, he believes that her case should be handled by an outsider.
The opening scene in the films narrative sets the tone of the film. Here we see a little background about Dr. Jim Law. We find that he does not believe in ghosts of other supernatural phenomena, and personally debunks ghosts at a college seminar. He tells his audience of students and faculty that these are primitive holdovers from events in their lives that they carry with them, due to their upbringing, and also due to the constant bombardment of horror films that reinforce their belief in the supernatural. Further, Dr. Law states to the students that in Asian society this is reinforced further by the cultural attitudes of local Asian beliefs and customs.
When Yan is sent to Dr. Law, she finds this newest psychiatrist a welcome relief. She even begins to fall in love with him. As the films narrative progresses, we see that her health improves. Moreover, Yan finds a renewed belief in her own self esteem. There are some extremely edge of your seat scenes of Yan, and her interaction with the ghosts that she is encountering. Yet, the viewer questions whether or not she is really seeing ghosts, or if this is all in her mind. However, it appears that Yan's therapy seems to be going well. Eventually, Yan is becoming cured. But events unfolding in Dr. Laws life does not seem to be going very well. He begins to see the ghost of a young girl from his past. Is he seeing ghosts? Or is this caused by the stress of overwork? The film lets the viewer decide what is happening.
Yet, the fact remains however, that Jim is now haunted by a ghost. And his colleagues notice that something is amiss with him when he tries to do Electro-Shock-Therapy on himself. As the viewer you might say that the ghosts are inner ghosts that haunt us all. Or maybe Jim really is seeing ghosts? The question is put to the viewer--is this real, or is it in the heads of the two aforementioned individuals: Jim and Yan. That is what I liked about this film. It is nuanced, suggestive, and little slow paced, so that the viewer gets to see the character development of the actors in the film. On a sad note, this would be the last film by actor Leslie Cheung, prior to his suicide in 2003. And the similarities in the films conclusion is always a sad watch for me. The film is highly recommended."