With Jennifer Connelly, Ariel Gade, Jennifer Baxter, Linda Emond, John C Reilly, Tim Roth, Dougray Scott, Pete Postlethwaite, Shelly Duvall
Directed by Walter Salles

The dinosaur craze is over, so is the
Halloween-styled Scream rips. The next frontier is for Hollywood to not only rip off the modern Japanese horror film, but to actually remake them even before some of the originals hit the screen! Sure, it will blow over eventually, but do yourself a favour and try to catch the originals before they get the Hollywood make-over. With The Ring leading the pack (its sequel remake directed by the series' original guy, Hideo Nakata). Like so many Japanese horror films, Nakata loves the haunting kid subject and elevators, water also playing a prominent part. When the Ring 2's remake hit our shores I in fact thought it was a combination of Nakata's Dark Water (having read some bits on it). But, in fact they just reveal an obsessed with similar subjects. Here the engaging Connelly plays a young mother who is going through a difficult divorce and has to share custody of her daughter. They have to move to a more affordable apartment just outside of New York City on Roosevelt Island. From the get-go the rundown building seems strange. Soon haunting phenomena related to water start to disrupt their lives. A slow, brooding pace and eerie moments enhance the mood, and while it's not exactly an all-out scare-fest, it is an engaging study of a mother's instincts to keep her child in every sense of the word.

PS. I didn't spot Shelley Duvall, daughter of Robert who played opposite Jack Nicholson in Stanley Kubrick's film version of Stephen King's
The Shining (unless she was one of the brief marriage consultants bit players...)

4 / C
- PB

1 2 3 4 5 6
A - B - C

click below for more Americanized Japanese horrors

never let a review decide for you, but for those who need a rating, see the Flamedrop scale below
6 - Volcanic
5 - Blistering
4 - Hot
3 - Smolder
2 - Room Temperature
1 - Fizzled
0 - Extinguished

A: Multi-Viewing Potential

B: Could Enjoy A 2nd Look

C: Once Should Suffice

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