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Genre: Horror/Thriller
Starring: Joshua Jackson, Rachael Taylor, David Denman, James Kyson Lee, John Hensley
Director: Masayuki Ochiai
Rating: PG (Horror)
Year Made: 2008



- Audio Commentary by Production Executive Alex Sundell, Screenwriter Luke Dawson and Actress Rachael Taylor
- A Ghost in the Lens Featurette
- A Cultural Divide: Shooting in Japan Featurette
- The Director: Masayuki Ochiai
- A Conversation with Luke Dawson Featurette
- A History of Spirit Photography Featurette
- Create Your Own Phantom Photo Featurette
- The Hunt for the Haunt: Tools and Tips for Ghost Hunting Featurette
- Alternate and Deleted Scenes
- Exclusive Inside Look at Kiefer Sutherland in Mirrors



Languages: English
Subtitles: English/Chinese/Cantonese/Korean/
Bahasa Indonesia
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1
Running Time: 1 hr 25 mins
Region Code: 3
Distributor: Alliance Entertainment
Official Website:




Soon after New York newlyweds Ben and Jane arrive in Japan for Ben's latest photography assignment, they discover disturbing, ghostly reflections of a young woman in their own photos. This inexplicable "spirit image" maybe connected to Ben's past and she's determined to provide the couple with a horrifying future of relentless vengeance from which there's no escape!


It’s like a curse itself: Anyone in Hollywood who comes up with the bright idea to remake an Asian horror movie will inevitably invite the harshest and most unkind reviews and comments from the critics. But why do the folks in Tinseltown keep remaking such flicks? Why do we keep getting Hollywood versions of Asian horror movies like Hong Kong’s The Eye, Japan’s The Ring, and now, one of Thailand’s most successful horror movies about spirit photography?

While the answers to these questions are lengthy enough to fill up countless academic discussion papers, we shall move on and comment on how this convenient 85 minute picture directed by Japanese (like that is going to solve the problem?) director Masayuki Ochiai fares.

If you are a fan of the original film directed by Banjong Pisanthanakun and Parkpoom Wongpoom, you need no introduction to the story. The filmmakers have changed the setting to Japan, where a young couple discovers a terrible secret when ghostly images begin appearing on the guy’s pictures. Yah, like that is going to creep you out like the 2004 Thai version.

Joshua Jackson (Bobby) and Rachael Taylor (Transformers) try their best to look scared to their wits in this expectedly bland picture that, in one reviewer’s words, is actually a business deal rather than a movie. You can feel the half heartedness of the filmmakers as every minute of the picture passes. You can predict every scare that is coming your way (helps if you have seen the original). And you can feel yourself looking at the player’s runtime to see whether the 85th minute is coming.

Maybe it’s unfair to repeatedly compare this with the original, but even as a stand alone horror movie, it does not succeed in creating that creepy and eerie atmosphere that horror fans crave for. The obligatory long haired spirit isn’t anything you haven’t seen in other movies before. The "you have sinned so you must pay" plot twist isn’t exactly something refreshing either. So what’s left to compel you to pick this DVD off the shelf then? To be fair, as a movie to pass those boring weekends, this one is okay. Besides, there is a whole load of special features for you to go through, if that excites you in any way.

One last grunt - We don’t understand why the writers of the phenomenal original version aren’t duly credited in this Hollywood remake.


As if to make up for the lackluster movie, this Code 3 DVD contains whole lot of extra features for you to go through, hoping that it’ll change your opinion about the widely panned picture.

The "Commentary by Production Executive Alex Sundell, Screenwriter Luke Dawson and Actress Rachael Taylor" sheds light on how Sundell is a huge fan of international cinema, spotted the box office success of the original Thai movie, and decided to remake it for the American audience. Oh, so she is the one. They then go on to talk about how they got Dawson in to write the script and why they changed the setting to Tokyo.

"A Ghost in the Lens" is an eight minute feature which tries to have audiences to understand the deeper theories of why ghosts exist. Together with the producer and writer, leads Jackson and Taylor talk about their opinions on the existence of spirits. Spooky accompanying music and an interesting interview with a spirit photography expert included.

"A Cultural Divide: Shooting in Japan" features the same spooky music and has the cast and crew talking about their experiences shooting in the Land of the Rising Sun. In the nine minute feature, Taylor talks about how empty she felt when she was there because of the “fish out of water” sentiment while another supporting cast feels that it is just like shooting any other movie.

The 10 minute "The Director: Masayuki Ochiai" has the Japanese filmmaker talking about why he was attracted to the project (he states that it’s not just a horror film), what spirit photography is (he thinks it’s great for people who don’t believe in ghosts) and whether he believes in this phenomenon (he retells an experience he had).

"A conversation with Luke Dawson" sees the writer talking about why this movie was made anyway despite the original success of the Thai version. He muttered the word “business” somewhere in this six minute feature and continues to talk about how Asian and American audiences react differently to such genres. Hmm, the last time we checked, the American critics didn’t like the movie a lot too.

In the five minute "A History of Spirit Photography" starts off with the definition “a reproduction of a spiritual materialization or psychokinetic manifestation by film exposure”. Then it gives us archival pictures of how spirit photography came about in the early 1800s. Not a very engaging feature.

"Create Your Own Phantom Photo" is an interesting step by step feature where you get to learn how to make your own scary picture using the photo manipulator software. The four minute feature is great for first time learners of the software.

"The Hunt for the Haunt: Tools and Tips for ghost Hunting" is another two minute clip which gives you tips on how and where to hunt down spirits. They tell you to check libraries for local ghost stories; look up search engines and go to cliché locations like cemeteries and abandoned buildings. We have a feeling the DVD producers were out of ideas to fill up the disc.

In the segment "Alternate and Deleted Scenes", we get 10 scenes which didn’t make it to the final cut. Well, if they did, they’d probably lengthen the movie by another, say, 10-odd minutes? The alternate ending isn’t much different from the one seen in theatres, but since there is space to be filled in the DVD, why not?

Viewers can also log on to the web link www.foxinternational.com to find out more about Kiefer Sutherland’s new movie "Mirrors"


To be fair, he disc’s visual transfer isn’t too bad as the sceneries in Japan look good on screen here. There are audio options of English, Portuguese and Espanol Dolby Digital 5.1.



Review by John Li


Other titles from Alliance Entertainment:

. Little Fish

. Shanghai Kiss

This review is made possible with the kind support from
Alliance Entertainment


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