I wanted to watched something scary in between my “Women Warrior” marathon, so I decided to check out my first Asian horror anthology. Tales from the Dead is a movie about….stories that the dead tell us, the audience. Or at least stories a psychic medium tells us and a cynical hitch hiker she picks up on the side of the road. Through three stories (really four counting the frame story), the narrator spins tales about ghostly revenge and vengence; while the humans in the story get their due comeuppance. It’s not a scary movie. At least not to a 23 year old amateur writer like me; and most of the stories give off more of a Twilight Zone/Chiller/Tales from the Darkside vibe. It’s not as campy as that bunch, but it’s definetly not any scarier either. The originality of the tales is absent and replaced with clever turns of classic urban legends such as the Black Widow Club and the “Time enough at last” story bit. Surprising the subtitles gave the movie a strange, western feel; as if Jason Cuadrado asked Rod Sterling and company to come in and write the screenplay. So yes, this anthology felt very familiar, but that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. Just don’t “Netflix it” thinking you’re gonna be on the edge of your seat. Unless your like 12 years old or something.
Oddly enough every movie I’ve watched within the last two weeks or so was released in 2008. I hope I don’t dissolve into a chalk trace with only my baggy shorts and Nike J‘s remaining. Okay, that wasn’t funny, but I did laugh when I saw it in this movie. ^_^
- Recapped!: “Tokyo Noir” (2004) (svmovieblog.wordpress.com)
- Japanese Ghost Stories (costumediscounters.com)