A serial murderer is at large, burning his victims’ bodies down to the bone with acid. In order to identify the victims, the police must turn to reluctant forensic sculptor Hyun-min. He has no heart for the job, concerned as he is with this daughter, whose body seems to be rejecting its heart transplant. But he does go to work, even as he and his daughter have visions of a female ghost.
The long-haired ghost is a figure that is rapidly losing its power to scare through massive over…se. Furthermore, though there are a couple of creepy appearances, the spectre here is not the all-destroying figure of evil as in The Grudge. Since she is clearly looking for a wrong to be righted, she is not as threatening as the killer, who himself is absent until the last act. Thus, most of the movie becomes a rather stately procedural. It isn’t badly done, but it is far from extreme.
There isn’t too much to choose between the 5.1 and DTS soundtracks. The sound is very immersive, in that the speakers on all sides are very, very active. However, the surround sound is also utterly indiscriminate – everything winds up in the rear speakers, whether it should be there or not, and that includes the dialogue – these are some of the most extreme surround voices I’ve yet encountered.
The picture is better, being a solid 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer. The colours are strong, and the all-important blacks are deep. There is no visible edge enhancement, and the image is sharp enough to get by. There is some noticeable ghosting, however.
The cast, crew and director interviews, though promotional, are more thoughtful than many of this kind. “Face Off, Face On” is two sets of outtakes, one showing the filming of scenes from behind the camera, and the other being a look at the water scenes. “Face Value” is more behind-the-scenes footage, rather like a production diary. There is also a still gallery, and trailers for this and other Tartan Asia Extreme releases. The menu’s main screen, intro and transitions are animated and scored.
This is a decent release, but not the jewel in the crown of Tartan’s series. Certainly worth a look for fans of Asian horror, however.
Special Features List
- Cast and Crew Interviews
- Behind the Scenes Featurette
- Still Gallery