Reviewed by: JimmyO
James Lee, Low Ngai Yuen, Ng Tian Hann and Ho Yuhang
What's it about
Four tales of the dead coming back to pester the living. Each story is set during the Chinese Hungry Ghost Festival, and each involves some really irked dead person.
Is it good movie?
Sometimes… sleep is better. And sleeping would’ve been much more rewarding than watching Visits: Hungry Ghost Anthology. I see a lot of extremely low budget horror films cross my path and many of them are bad, even horrible. Still, I was surprised to see such a low budget Malaysian film that ranks with many of the less than stellar films I am unlucky to watch. But here it is, even the worst of the J-Horror movies seem so much better than this. Basically, this anthology includes four tales of “bone-chilling horror” and I neither felt anything involving my bone, or a single case of chills. This isn’t horror, it is somebody standing around being a ghost, terrifying actors with a very mixed range of talent. I did find one of the stories creepy in the sense that I’ve done something like it before with a Ouija Board when I was a kid. Although the results I had were a bit scarier than this.
We are introduced to the spooktacular bit of ghosties by a random DJ talking about the Chinese Hungry Ghost Festival. It is kind of like their Halloween as the spirits of the past are released out of purgatory and left to wander among the living. Each story revolves around that time of year and we are introduced to the first dreadful experience. In “1413”, some girl is haunted by another girl. Could it be a suicide pact or might it be something completely different? Either way, I didn’t care. The resolution came out of left field and it didn’t work. Although, I liked the relationship between the two young ladies. They were two of the better actors here.
With “Waiting for Them”… wait, I can barely remember. Oh yeah, it was some nonsense about a girl with a friend who’s a girl and she has a girlfriend. Apparently, the girl with the girlfriend has issues and has come to her BFF to get help. Although for some reason the main girl doesn’t find it odd that her friend just appears walking on the side of the road. The climax is absolutely no surprise. As for the next episode, I’m going to skip to the last because it is by far the worst. In “Anybody Home?”, some security guard is putting up hidden cameras in a girls apartment and he constantly stalks here. Big surprise here, that we soon find out that ghosts are involved. This is a mostly dialogue free tale which relies heavily on “security cameras”. If the characters weren’t so damn dull, maybe I would have been more interested in the outcome.
As I said, I skipped “Nodding Scoop” which is the third short. Why would I do this? Because it was the only one that was slightly of interest. I like the idea of conjuring the dead, especially when things are all spooky like. It revolves around three bland friends who are making a “movie” together. This includes two girls and a guy, and both of the girls like the guy. But when the three start filming a ritual designed to conjure a spirit, a spirit decides to show up. I’ll say this now, if you don’t really want to conjure a ghost or whatever and you may believe in… just don’t try. Well, that really applies only if you are in a horror movie. If you’re not, I’d say have a blast, because I guarantee the experience will be much more worthwhile than sitting through Visits.
Video / Audio
Video: An average Widescreen presentation of a low budget film. It looks like a low budget film.
Audio: The audio is not listed, but just like the video, it sounds like a low budget film.
The extras include Making of VISITS (22:27) which is one choppily edited little making of feature. Executive Producer Lina Tan offers up why she wanted to make the film and all the other participants chime in. While this is slightly more interesting than the movie itself, it certainly didn’t make me warm up to the feature any more.
And finally, this disc features the Original Trailer which makes it look better than it is. And also a few other trailers for Tidepoint Pictures.
Watching Visits: Hungry Ghost Anthology made me hungry… hungry for anything else. In fact, during the viewing, I thought about whether I should get a drink, eat something, go to the bathroom. I also wondered if there was anything else I could watch. A dull and pointless anthology that has less scares than the Halloween episode of Hannah Montana, if there is such a thing. But if there is, it would be scarier than this. BOOring!