• Muoi: The Legend of a Portrait

    Muoi: The Legend of a Portrait


    A struggling writer – who previously had a hit novel with a less than flattering account of a friend’s leaked sex tape – visits said friend in Vietnam, while researching a local ghost story about a cursed painting.

    Writer / Director Kim Tae-kyung had previously made Dead Friend (2004), and Muoi: Legend of a Portrait is very similar in structure. The ghost isn’t clearly defined, leading to a lot of Ju-On style jump scares, but there is little tying the…

  • The Ghost

    The Ghost


    An amnesiac (Kim Ha-neul) who now distances herself from her former friends, finds members of the Mean Girls she used to hang out with being picked off like flies, and must investigate her past to figure out why she might be on a ghost’s hit list.

    Star Kim is coming to Dead Friend / Ghost, after two big RomCom hits – My Tutor Friend (2003) and Too Beautiful to Lie (2004). This background comes across in the film, with Kim’s…

  • Spellbound



    Spellbound is a romantic comedy about a stage magician (Lee Min-ki) with a conjuring act, who falls for his assistant (Son Ye-Jin) who is actually haunted. Director Hwang In-ho keeps things stylish, and quickly paced, though a question of genre balance is never really required. There are jump scares, and longhaired girl ghosts make their presence felt, but this is firmly in the RomCom genre. Lee and Son have great chemistry, but each actor could easily have great chemistry with…

  • Whispering Corridors 6: The Humming

    Whispering Corridors 6: The Humming


    The new vice principle of an all-girls school is a former student that may have links to a haunted washroom – but these ghostly horrors are nothing compared to the flesh and blood terrors walking these whispering corridors.

    Apparitions menacing teenage girls in uniforms are the broad thread that ties the various entries under the series title, but they are otherwise unrelated. So while the first few Corridor entries occurred in fairly rapid succession, there was a noticeable lag before…

  • Watching



    Working late on Christmas Eve, an office worker (Kang Ye-won) is trapped in the building's parking garage by an obsessed security guard (Lee Hak-joo)...

    Along with the holiday trappings, Watching is a fairly faithful remake of P2 (2007) - though strips down the set pieces for budgetary considerations (the dog is replaced by goldfish). In typical Korean thriller fashion, this remix enjoys an outlandish third act twist - which is teased nicely, but the final execution seems slightly silly. Watching…

  • Wolf Guy

    Wolf Guy


    Fans of Kazumasa Hirai and Hisashi Sakaguchi’s manga, Wolf Guy, about the trials and tribulations of a werewolf romancing his high school teacher – got a fairly faithful adaptation. That would be Masashi Matsumoto’s 1973 Ōkami no monshō (Horror of the Wolf) for Toho. Two years later Toei would get in on the action with Enraged Lycanthrope – which keeps the gang assault, and pitfalls of were-blood transfusions – but is otherwise a very different beast. Saying that Teen Wolf…

  • Samurai Reincarnation

    Samurai Reincarnation

    Futaro Yamada’s 1967 historical fantasy novel Makai Tensho, involves leaders of the Shimabara Rebellion (a Catholic peasant uprising) returning from hell, and resurrecting dead historical figures (like Miyamoto Musashi) to overthrow the Shogunate. The only person standing against these demonic figures is famed samurai Yagyū Jūbei Mitsuyoshi – played by Sonny Chiba in full one-eyed glory.

    The novel has been adapted frequently both in live-action, and anime form (including pieces falsely advertised as Ninja Scroll prequels) – but this Kinji…

  • Necronomicon



    A horror anthology based on the works of H.P. Lovecraft, with the wrap around sequence and concluding segment directed by Brian Yuzna. A continuation of Yuzna's work with Stuart Gordon, which brings along Screaming Mad George and Jeffrey Combs for the Cthulu love. A heavily made-up Combs portrays the author, reading the subsequent segments from the Necronomicon - while a larger nose and chin are in keeping with the author, it actually made Combs resemble Bruce Campbell which amused me…

  • Retribution



    Koji Yakusho as compromised detective in sinister circumstances is Kiyoshi Kurosawa's most popular territory, with numerous aspects that will immediately remind fans of Cure (1997). Retribution acts as the duo's seventh collaboration, and last with Yakusho as the lead (he would turn up for a supporting turn in 2015's Tokyo Sonata). The premise sees a police officer investigating a series of murders with a similar salt water drowning M.O., with evidence tying him to the first killing - all while…

  • Shin Godzilla

    Shin Godzilla


    Believe the hype.

    Hideaki Anno's King of the Monsters reboot plays out against the talking heads of bureaucrats running around like headless chickens - with consciously comedic cutting throughout. Is the social commentary a little too obvious? Sure. Is the satire too grounded to fully embrace the absurdity for a light hearted romp? Things get dark. The Ren Osugi half is noticeably funnier - but even if the charm wasn't sustained throughout the disaster, Shin Godzilla actually managed to remind…

  • Memories


    Memories is Kim Jee-Woon's entry into the Pan-Asian horror omnibus Three (later marketed as Three Extremes II). The film intercuts a haunted man whose wife has gone missing, with an amnesiac woman who has cryptic visions - building towards a climax that is both frustratingly obvious, and charmingly vague. Coming in at forty minutes, the short is anything but brief - with lingering shots that play to the ominous atmosphere but still feel like they are padding a third of…

  • Night of Death!

    Night of Death!


    The new nurse at a convalescence home finds her elderly charges have voracious appetites. Night of Death! is a slow burn, but even at that temperature offers a warm meal with all the commentary expected from cannibalism flicks. Those running out of 80s horror, have done a lot worse than this French offering – though word of warning, avoid the trailers... one of which plays as a greatest hits.

    Bon appétit!

    Daily Horror Hunt - March 2023
    Challenge #26 - same amount of characters in the title as film #25.