Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Your pants just ran away

My love for horror movies (ghost stories, not slasher films) has developed into a few quirks. I have a phobia of closets, attics, and vacant restrooms. If you've seen Asian horror films you know these are ideal places for evil spirits to appear and swallow you whole. The newest film that's fallen across my doorstep is Paranormal Activity. The flick, about a young couple and the spooky happenings in their suburban home, is earning rave reviews. But how will it stand up to the scariest films I've seen yet?

The Wig (2005) is a Korean film about a woman who buys her cancer-stricken sister a wig that possesses bad karma. Yes, Asians may have strange issues with hair, but nonetheless this film is CREEPY.

The Ring (2002), an American remake of a Japanese movie, takes the prize for most frightened audience. Men and women were shrieking like little babies in my theater. Kudos to Dreamworks for taking a gamble on this one.

Tale of Two Sisters (2003) is a Korean psychological thriller about sisters dealing with their father's new marriage. Even more disturbing than the girls' stepmother is the ghost that resides in their house. Tale of Two Sisters spawned a dumbed-down Hollywood remake in 2009.

Ju-On (2000) is the grand pooba of Japanese ghost movies. It's practically a perfect horror film, just a bit too long. Ju-On rambles half-way through when it follows too many characters who have entered a cursed house. The beginning and ending of the movie are bone chilling. If you see no other Asian horror film, see Ju-On.

One Missed Call (2003) made me scream out loud, and I was watching it in the daytime. This Japanese movie about young people receiving death calls from the future features eery ringtones and contorting evil spirits.

The Others (2001) is the closest Ajumma's come to having a heart attack while watching a movie in the theater. Nicole Kidman and the child actors do a superb job protraying a family living in a dark, haunted English manor during WWII.

The Blair Witch Project (1999) is one of those films that you either love or hate. I loved it, and saw it when people were still unsure whether the footage about teenagers lost in the Maryland woods was real. It's what can't be seen in The Blair Witch Project that terrifies people most.

The Grudge (2004) is a frightening American film directed by Ju-On director Takashi Shimizu. Same premise as Ju-On, with some parts stronger and others weaker. This is one of my favorite movies of all time, another screamer. The Grudge Haunted House simulator game is being released on October 14 for the Wii.

The Eye (2002) is intense. The Pang Brothers take dead spirits to a whole new level in this flick about a blind woman who receives an eye transplant and gains sight. I actually spent quite a bit of this movie with my eyes closed.