It's a fairly slow week in horror, although there are two major releases in "The Orphanage" and "One Missed Call". There's really no indie-horror out, but there's enough to keep you occupied until next week, which is chock-filled with indie releases. As usual, feel free to click on those links and purchase them from Amazon...
"The Orphanage" had a fairly limited release in North America, but was hugely successful in its native Spain. In fact, it won various awards and was chosen by the Spanish Academy of Films as Spain's nominee for the 2007 Academy Award for Best Foreign Film. It's by first-time feature director, Juan Antonio Bayona and produced by the Spanish production company, Rodar & Rodar, co-produced by Telecinco and presented by "Pan's Labyrinth" director, Guillermo del Toro. In 2007, New Line bought the rights to produce an English-language remake. This is a great, little movie and is worth checking out before both the film and it's director get run through the Hollywood grinder... I'm betting that Bayona will be signed up to helm some sort of remake in Hollywood and we already know that there's a U.S. remake of this coming...
Speaking of foreign films and directors that have been run through the Hollywood grinder, "One Missed Call" comes out this week, also. "One Missed Call" is the 2008 U.S. remake of a Japaneese film, this one is directed by Eric Valette and written by Andrew Klavan. I haven't seen this version and probably won't, but the original "One Missed Call" is directed by legendary J-Horror filmmaker Takashi Miike. It was so big in Japan that the trademark 'ringtone of death' from the film became rather popular and was actually used as a ringtone and background music for unofficial haunted houses. Valette, the director of the U.S. version, is actually an award winning French director, who's probably best known for his award winning horror, Malefique
5 college kids, one ghostly killer... you do the math. "Seance", which won awards at the Eureka Springs Digital Film Festival and the Modesto ShockerFest, is written and directed by Mark L. Smith. Smith is the writer of both "Vacancy" and "Vacancy 2", which is currently filming and "Seance" is his directorial debut. The production value is great, so I'm thinking that they may have been thinking theatrical release at one point, but... well, you know. It's about a group of college girls who attempt to rid their dorm room of a troublesome little girl ghost, but inadvertently bring back the little girl's killer. The killer is played by TV's the Highlander's own Adrian Paul.
Let's continue the trend on remaking films... "Black House" is actually the 2007 South Korean film, "Geomeun jip", directed by Shin Tae-ra. However, the film was actually based on the popular Japanese novel by Yusuke Kishi called Kuroi le (The Black House) AND a Japanese version of the film was also made in 1999. Further, imdb says that there's an American version 'in development'. So, I don't know who to blame, who's at fault or what I can say... I haven't seen any version, yet. I don't know. Either way, the story surrounds an insurance agent that suspects a family murdered their son to receive his insurance policy.
"Sick Nurses" or "Suay Laak Sai" in its native Thailand, is a horror-comedy written and directed by Piraphan Laoyont. This is actually pretty cool, as it was released in Thailand on June 14, 2007, but critical and box-office responses were, well... muted. It was eventually shown at the 2007 Hawaii International Film Festival in the "Extreme Asia" section, where it received positive reviews. As of 2007, the film had only been released on DVD in Thailand, with no English subtitles. The story is about a group of sexy nurses, who harvest organs and are haunted by the ghost of one of their dead patients. Expect tight fitting nurse outfits, J-horror style ghosts and gore.
Nice reviews. We are fans of Miike too.
How about a review/preview of the upcoming horror offerings in the Tribeca Film Festival.
Okay, can do... check back tomorrow.
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