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MOH: DREAM CRUISE
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Reviewed by: Ryan Doom

Directed by: Norio Tsuruta

Starring:
Daniel Gillies
Ryo Ishibashi
Naomi Saito

Movie:  
star star star star
Extras:  
star star star
Overall:  
star star star star
What's it about
An adulterous lawyer living in Japan with a fear of water gets stuck on a boat with his mistress, and her husband. Oh, and thereís a ghost on board. Whewww!
Is it good movie?
Eh. For as many of the Masters of Horror that Iíve dug, I found Dream Cruise quite sub par. It has the right elements; itís a simple story of regret, revenge, fear, envy, lust and, of course, ghosts. It has a decent premise; I bought into the idea of an American living in Japan because I usually enjoy stories that involve that particular fish-out-of-water angle. The differences in the culture. What it takes to survive there, as things truly are different. The complete culture shock seems ripe for endless amounts of material. However, this entry doesnít approach any of these themes. Sure, thereís a white dude living in Japan and working as a lawyer, but it didnít exploit the potential.

Instead, Dream Cruise heads down the standard ghost route. See, our American had a little brother once, and he watched his little bro drown on a massive body of water, hints the main characterís deathly fear of water that still gives him nightmares years later. Well, this fear comes into play when his client and his wife invite the American for a cruise he canít refuse. Turns out quickly that the American has been sleeping with his client's wife, which makes for some good moments of tension. A great scene comes when all three sit around a table on the boat. The husband keeps hammering about how pretty his wife is, and keeps asking if the lawyer agrees. Sticky situation. A cheaters worst nightmare.

Placing a ghost story on a large boat never seems to fail as characters essentially are trapped with little room to maneuver. They either keep running in circles, hide, confront their fears, or jump off into the great beyond. And while director Norio Tsuruta utilized the boat well, the film suffers from repetitiveness. In particular, thereís a scene where the propeller stops working and the husband swims beneath the boar to inspect. As he pulls the logged seaweed away, lo-and-behold the seaweed becomes hair! My, my, when will filmmakers learn that the olí ghost-hair-coming-to-get-you trick has been done a few times already. Itís the type of scare tactic that made me literally shake my head in disappoint. Havenít they seen the other Asian films that have done this 37 times before? Well, it has. And those films made a hell of a lot more sense than this did, because by the time the credits rolled, I didnít know what I supposed to believe.
Video / Audio
Video: Widescreen 1.78:1

Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1
The Extras
Had a preview, so I couldn't view. But they do include:

Audio Commentary: Featuring actor Daniel Gillies and producer Mick Garris

Making of Dream Cruise:
Last Call
While Dream Cruise isnít a complete waste of time, it simply did not live up to some of the other entries for Masters of Horror. Itís decent, but lacks in comparison. Things donít make a lot of sense, but the acting works and thereís enough tension and suspense to hold interest. Just donít expect anything groundbreaking here. Average at best.
ARROW IN THE HEAD'S RATING SYSTEM
star star star star I'D BUTCHER MY FAMILY TO SEE THIS AGAIN
star star star HANG ME BUT I DUG IT A LOT
star star AN OK WAY TO KILL TWO HOURS
star JUST SLING AN ARROW IN MY HEAD AND LET ME DIE IN PEACE

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