The Child’s Eye (2010): 1-02-2012
Answer: The Eye, The Eye 2, The Eye 10 (The Eye 3 in the States), Re-Cycle, Diary, and Forest of Death. Question: What are movies by the Pang Brothers that I liked?
The Pang Brothers, Oxide and Danny Pang, have a long list of movies that they either wrote, produced or worked on and I have yet to come across one I didn’t like. They aren’t great 10 out of 10 movies, but what movie is? *cough* *cough* Citizen Kane *cough* *cough* Their movies, especially their most recent ones, have been visually stunning to go along with, for the most part, a well written script. That’s not to say the acting has been good in all of the movies i.e. The Eye 10, but there is just something about their style that I like.
The Child’s Eye is their latest installment in their growing library of accomplishments with another movie, Perfect Fairy Tale, which is in post production coming up. It basically follows a group of friends that gets stranded in an old hotel and weird shit from the past starts to pop up. Nothing too new on the originality scale, but they haven’t disappointed me yet.
It opens up with a couple sitting on a dock overlooking the ocean. The guy asks the girl what it is she wanted to tell him but she says they’ll just talk about it later then it cuts to the opening credits. They go back to their hotel room to meet their friends and find out everyone is leaving because of some riots. They all decide to pack up and leave.
On the way to the airport, they find out it’s closed and get taken to what seems to be the only hotel in Thailand that isn’t closed. Three kids with a barking dog are shown looking up the stares at the group of friends then run off while menacing music plays. As with most Asian movies, I’m left thinking “What the fuck was the point of that?” until later in the movie when it’s all explained.
The group is now checking out their rooms. The first couple finds a stained bed and the second find weird flying giant bugs. Now downstairs while sitting at a table the three kids enter and sit and stare at the empty seat at the friend’s table. The waiter brings extra food then the chair moves by itself. Dun dun dun.
A riot breaks out in front of the hotel and the cops fire smoke bombs into the crowd which just pisses off the rioters. Rainie, the girl from the dock in the beginning, sees what seems to be a ghost girl standing among the rioters. She blinks and then the vision is gone. Cut to her friend who sees a hand floating towards her then cut to black. The friend wakes up terrified trying to explain herself to her friends.
Rainie’s boyfriend, Lok, blames her for everything. He tells her when they get back to Hong Kong they’ll break up. Apparently he doesn’t want to ruin their vacation by breaking up. I guess the riots and being stranded in a rundown hotel was all in the brochure and part of the fucking plan.
Rainie is shown lying in bed, Lok gets up and leaves, then you see a creepy ghost girl float down above her bed that disappears when Rainie gets up. The two other guys, Hei and the other guy without a name so far, look sickly then disappear when the girls get back with food. They rush back to their rooms to find the guys aren’t there. They find from the front desk that the guys didn’t leave. The little girl from the staring group of kids tells them that the ghost woman took the guys.
They all venture upstairs and find a fenced off part of the hotel with a ladder leading even higher where a woman was kept locked up. The ladder starts to move as the dog named Doggy, great fucking name, barks up a storm. Brother Quan comes out yelling at them to get out and the two other kids were unconscious. Mon, the girl with Doggy tells them that Doggy can see the ghost that took their friends and Rainie and the gang all go back into the hotel in search for the ghost woman.
They arrive in the laundry room, which apparently has no lights, and take a dramatic pause. Doggy barks and a chair starts to slide towards them while a large cloud of smoke filled up behind them. The chair flew at them then seemed to be thrown at the smoke. Ling finds Ciwi, but Ciwi didn’t seem to see her back. Ciwi leaves the room in search for the others leaving Ling confused. Ling sees a replay of Ciwi walking in search of her friends and decides to follow her into the room. Ling sees something drip from the ceiling and a hand pops out of the ground. Ling is left with the ghost woman slowly moving closer and closer to her then disappears when she turns around.
Now in complete darkness, Ling uses her cell phone to light up the room for that complete silent scene with no light except for the cell phone and you know something is going to pop out and when it does, it still seems to startle you part. And sure enough, it did.
It is possible to rehash some horror clichés effectively. The last scene I just described is in a ton of horror movies, but rarely done right. Normally you see the ghost’s, ghoul’s or monster’s silhouette just as the actor is turning around so you can see when the jump out and say boo moment is coming. Here in the last scene you see nothing but darkness and a little bit of the room an before you know it, here comes creepy ghost reaching out to grab you. Bravo movie.
It is now Rainie’s turn to come out of the fog. She seems to be in a forest with a naked demon child thing that starts to climb up the walls then jumps on her from the ceiling knocking her to the ground. The rest of their Scooby Doo gang finds her and take her to an unconscious Hei.
They demand Mon tell them what happened in the past. She tells of Brother Quan and his wife opened the hotel. His wife took in stray dogs that drove Quan crazy. He killed all the dogs and then his wife. Rumors spread that the ghost of his wife is haunting the hotel. At midnight Brother Quan is going to make a sacrifice. Hei points at the ceiling saying Lok’s name then starts to freak out saying “They don’t like us!!” and “Don’t leave me behind!!” He has a seizure and seems to be possessed. His tongue falls out, girls scream and cut to a hospital where Hei is in critical condition.
Rainie rushes back to the hotel. She sees Brother Quan in the kitchen chopping up some bloody meat. She demands to tell her what happened to her friends. She asks a man with a sharp meat cleaver, “Did you kill your wife and my friends?” Fucking smart lady. He tells her to leave or he will kill her.
Rainie runs off and finds Doggy and they go off and start to explore the hotel. They come to a ladder which leads to the attic and apparently Rainie knows how horror movies work so she doesn’t even try to turn on the lights. She finds the naked demon child thing which seems to have a dog’s face. While hiding, Ling calls Rainie’s phone tipping her position off. The dog-faced kid seems to be blind as it is sniffing around right next to Rainie and Doggy and doesn’t seem to notice them.
Brother Quan shows up to feed the dog-faced kid some food and Rainie uses that opportunity to run off. Ciwi pops up and attacks Rainie. Rainie beats the shit out of her pretty quickly. The body disappears and Ling pops up with a creepy ghost face. You hear a fight going on and when the camera pops around the corner, Ling is out like a light and Ciwi shows back up for some more. Or not, she just tells Rainie she found her little brother and to follow her.
The walk up to what seems to be a portal leading into an alternate world. Kind of like they walked through a Stargate into someone’s bad acid trip. Brother Quan’s wife is now leading Rainie and we find out Rainie and her friends were taken by the wife who was just searching for her kids I think. Rainie finds everyone tied up in a room then is attacked by the wife. The ghost wife announces that Rainie is pregnant.
Lok yells not to kill her and the ghost wife has a flashback and we find that her husband, Brother Quan was not the one that murdered the dogs but it was actually her, and while stopping her from strangling their deformed dog faced baby, Quan fucked up his ankle causing him to push his wife down where she bashed her head then died.
Out of the flashback the ghost wife seems to realize the error in her ways, turns to ash and everyone is let free. A little anti-climactic.
Brother Quan hobbles in, bleeding from the mouth and collapses dead next to his now dead dog-child. Not sure what happened, didn’t really explain that. They find a tank of water that still has the wife’s body floating in it.
Back to the dock from the beginning with Lok and Rainie looking over the ocean. Their once rocky relationship seems all fixed after the experience of being kidnapped and almost killed by an evil ghost lady. Rainie’s Uncle picks them up and it’s all a happy ride back to the airport when Rainie tosses her book of ghost stories and rumors out of the window, apparently causing the car behind them to crash then it’s over. You don’t see anything but a book flying at the camera, but you do hear what sounds like screeching tires and a crash, which would let one to believe an accident happened.
Another good watch from the Pang Brothers. Far from perfect but yet far above all of the shit I’ve been watching. It was your typical person gets murdered and their ghost comes back for revenge story so it doesn’t get too many points from originality. The scene when the girls arrive in the laundry room was probably my favorite. It was a dark atmosphere with little noise, giving it an eerie feeling about it. Again they didn’t disappoint with the visuals, especially when they went through the portal.
Overall, it was a creepy, not so much scary, ghost story that kept my interest and amused me. I’m glad to see there are still writer/producers/directors out there that still understand the horror genre. I applaud you Pang Brothers. 7 out of 10.