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FilmsAsia: Asian film reviews
Soh Yun-Huei
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   Eye 10, The  



 

The Eye 10

Reviewed by Soh Yun-Huei

Directors: Oxide Pang, Danny Pang
Writing Credits: Oxide Pang, Danny Pang
Cast: Wilson Chen, Stephen Fung,
Genre: Horror
Countries: Hong Kong, Thailand
Year Released: 2005
Rating: ½ a star (out of four stars)

When the end of the year comes along, The Eye 10 is almost guaranteed a spot on the worst-of lists of many people who had the misfortune of watching the movie. The Eye franchise has sputtered since the first sequel (the terribly underwhelming The Eye 2), and this third film must surely be the sign that the Pang Brothers should be banned from making another Eye film. The film unsuccessfully tries to straddle humour and horror, and the only result of that is that the humour is horrifyingly bad and the horror laughably lame. Skipping seven numbers to land at 10 won’t save this film a bit – and hopefully it will sink the franchise for good too.

Five young adults are on a holiday in Thailand, and one of them manages to get his hands on a mysterious book that tells of the ten ways that Thais try to see ghosts with (hence the title of the movie). Stupidly, the group decides to employ the methods detailed in the book in an attempt to see ghosts. They are relatively successful in their attempts, but as stupid people deserve to die, the group starts to realize that they have bitten off much more than they could chew.

The Eye boasted some truly creepy moments and managed to instill a sense of paranoia in many moviegoers post-movie. The Eye 2 had one shocking moment, unfortunately played to death in the trailer and thus easy to anticipate during the movie. Is it any surprise then, to find out that The Eye 10 has absolutely no real scary moment, depending instead on "horror" stalwarts like sudden loud noises and amping up the soundtrack? It is a telling sign when a demonic possession ends up becoming nothing more than a slapstick breakdancing competition (that scene is, by the way, the lowest of all the low scenes in the movie).

Perhaps it’s the Pang Brothers’ stab at creating a comedy, but The Eye 10 is chock-full of inappropriate humor that detracts from the experience. The weird thing is that they are making fun of their own movie franchise, as though they are trying to spoof their own creations. Take the scene which reprises one of the more impressive moments in The Eye, when a little boy asks one of the central protagonists if he has seen his report book. Creepy in its original incarnation, this scene is now played for laughs, and although it is amusing, it’s also terribly out of place in a horror movie that seems like it wants to be taken seriously.

To add insult to injury, none of the leads know how to act properly, going either for the spaced out look or completely overacting to the point of irritation. It’s also hampered by a very bad dubbing that seems to have come from Taiwan, and reminded me of the equally badly dubbed Saturday afternoon anime that used to show on Channel 8. However, the film’s half star is also awarded because of the actors and actresses, because although their acting "skills" are abominable in the film, most of them are fresh-faced and at the very least bearable to look at. It may seem superficial, but without the pretty cast there would have been nothing going for this film at all.

Final Word: It’s such a poor movie words almost fail me. Destined to live on in posterity as one of the worst Hong Kong horror films ever made, losing only slightly to The Park.