Ju-On: The Curse Review: “Meow”

Title: Ju-on; The Curse

Director: Takashi Shimizu

Writer: Takashi Shimizu

Cast: Takako Fuji; Yurei Yanagi; Ryota Kojama

Duration: 71 minutes

Country: Japan

Year: 2000

In this post we are going to talk and review about one of the movies that together with the “Ring” movie is one of the most famous and scary J-horror films which like I said has made Japanese and to a lesser degree asian horror movies known around the world. I’m of course talking about “Ju-On: The Curse”

This movie does not have a linear story but is divided in several small vignettes each featuring different characters for the most part, aside from the ghost there’s only one character that appears in more than one vignette, which are not ordered chronologically.

The plot summary: “After Kayako Saeki and her son Toshio are brutally murdered they remain their deep resentment at being killed makes them remain in this world as Onryo and cursing and killing those who enter their house.”

So after this small plot summary let’s get to the review.

My opinion: This movie is really good each and every vignette delivers what every horror should. A feeling of fear a dread few horror films can deliver. Almost every story is scary as hell and a definite treat for horror fans.

The atmosphere is not always dark but they know how to use their scenes in the dark to their fullest extent and how the movie is filmed and the music make you feel uneasy even when the scene is filmed in a bright summer afternoon and the tension building is amazing I mean you know what’s going to happen in each vignette but the point is when and until it happens the movie keeps you at the edge of your seat until it happens.

The characters for the most part are there to be killed by the ghosts and you barely learn anything about them except for one, as such I don’t really feel about them one way or the other, I don’t think any of them deserve to die but when they do in most cases I’m far to busy crapping my pants to be sad about their demise, even the one who I got to know better and even felt a little more sympathy for I didn’t feel too much about his demise

The evil spirits of Kayako and Toshio are very scary, and I must say that the child who played Toshio, Ryota Kojama, is not a bad child actor whether he is talking or playing a ghost. Kayako, Takako Fuji, doesn’t speak much on this movie since she spends 99% of it in Onryo form but she is the scariest out of two ghosts, she does a really good job with the expression and crawling which is how he moves in this movie, also her first appearance almost gave me a heart attack.

Other than that the characters playing the other characters do a fine job and their reactions are completely believable.

While watching this movie you might think there are some kills that are missing, one character appears in the movie, disappears, and reappears in a rather cool scene returning home a little more dead while another character appears for a brief 2 scenes and never appears again, being only mentioned to be dead, if you are curious about their death scenes watch “Katasumi” and “4444444444” which are two short films made by the films’ director and arguably the two films responsible for the birth of the franchise.

So is Ju-On: The Curse a Five Star Movie? Now I’m gonna have to say that no, it is a Four Star Movie, it is good it’s really good and REALLY scary but the characters, yeah they were normal and I felt sympathy towards one in particular but I didn’t care about them as much as I would have cared for a main character I’d have followed throughout the movie. It definitely would have added to the fear I would have felt if there was a group of characters I’d gotten to know and care about. My second issue with this movie is that while I think that the way it tells the story in a non linear way in the form of vignettes is interesting I felt one which kind of sets up the movie for a sequel shouldn’t have been in the movie, since  I feel they could have ended the movie and set a sequel a different way with a thing they introduce to more or less introduce another vignette but that they don’t address anymore in the rest of the movie. Now it is for those reasons I give Ju-On: The Curse Four out of Five Stars.

I want to add that even if it didn’t get the five stars out of five I can’t stop recommending you to watch it. And now I leave you with the trailer uploaded to YouTube by MovieCriticBlog.