POP QUIZ: Which Asian horror movie is this from?
WRONG! The answer is all of them.
Sigh. Ok here is my dilemma. I know many of you love love love Asian horror namely Audition(which I not so secretly dislike) and The Ring and possibly the Grudge. My problem is that as of late every asian horror movie to come out has been less than thrilling and gives me a terrible headache and case of deja vu. Headache because you never know what the fuck is going on, and deja vu because I've seen that creepy asian girl with long hair who makes gurgling noises one too many times.
Now this isn't to say that I don't find asian horror movies scary. They all have their scary points- and let's face it- the day a scary dead asian girl with stringy hair stops being scary is the day the care bear meter falls and the world has no soul. I just think asian horror movies have been slacking and people just think they have to love them because they are the Godfather of horror movies. Personally I've seen much much better things coming from French and Spanish horror movies but what do I know?
SO ANYWAYS A Tale of Two Sisters may be the most mind boggling movie I've seen to date. I should first mention it took me about 4 tries to watch this the whole way through as the beginning has a very slow build up. Beautiful cinematography and overall images but slow as fuck. I suppose it also didn't help things by knowing the "twist" or whatever because being the plot ruiner that I am I had to read the plot of The Uninvited...but oh well.
The movie is still powerful and strong despite knowing the ending or not. What is wonderful about the movie is that you can probably watch it 20 times and still pick up on new things. I would like to go back and watch it a second time with a clearer understanding in my head now that I come to think of it- but we can't have it all.
There are several beautiful blood moments that made me swoon, as well just some really great camera work and what not. What I find to be most upsetting though is that the twist in this is too difficult to wrap your head around. Now I will defend The Sixth Sense until the end of time- and the great thing about the Sixth Sense is that the twist made sense. Going back we understand that Malcolm never truly interacted with anyone other than Cole- so therefore the twist is warranted. Here however I had the feeling I was being a bit gypped. It's like being invested in a movie the whole way through until you find out the main character was dreaming the entire time. The twist while making sense in the long run- just felt like a giant cheat to the audience- or at least to me. It's like trying to follow someone's conversation when all they talk about are inside jokes with someone else? You feel me? Didn't think so. I just am not a big fan of movies where I only appreciate them once the twist happens. I didn't really give a damn about anyone in this until I figured it out and even then it was a lack luster damn.
I understand the whole idea of everything being a part of her sub conscious/ she's trying to cope with the idea of having her sister's blood on her hands- but it was just too....messy or something. Is there really a way to fix this? Probably not. The story is flawed from the beginning. The realization of why she would be going through so much inner turmoil is very startling and heart breaking. But I felt like that realization and the emotional effect it causes is too hard to grasp after only one viewing.
Another irksome thing was the ghosts in this. I felt like this was the real deal breaker. Oh wait every asian horror movie has to have a ghost in it! Never mind! But really- there was no purpose for the ghost. There are way too many things going on here. We have a story about two sister's hating their step mother, but WAIT there is a weird ghost that gets her period on you while you sleep and WAIT again actually nothing is what it seems and none of this actually happened....WAIT WAIT the stepmother really is a cold hearted bitch? It's just too much.
Again I can appreciate the story and the images and every little thought that was put into this movie. It is beautiful it is moving but I just felt cheated and annoyed by a lot of it. I know it's probably my general dislike of asian horror movies but there has to be someone out there who feels the same way I do? Anyone?