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The Uninvited (2009)
Written by: The Arrow
Director: Charles & Thomas Guard

Starring:
Emily Browning/Anna
Arielle Kebbel/Alex
David Strathairn/Steven
Elizabeth Banks/Rachael
5 10
PLOT-CRUNCH
Cutie Anna (Browning) is let out of the loony bin and returns home to live with her pussy-whipped Pops (Strathairn), her hot sister (Kebbell) and her new stepmother (Banks). Thing is…Anna suspects that the latter is a psycho killer, one that was responsible for the death of her biological mum. So she attempts to prove her theory while silly looking ghosts pop up here and there.
THE LOWDOWN
I worship the original 2003 Korean Horror film on which this one is based on; Ji-woon Kim’s A TALE OF TWO SISTERS (read my review here). And taking into account Hollywood’s limp-dick skills at re-doing Asian genre films right (The Ring and The Grudge aside); I didn’t have high hopes for this one. Actually before the screening, I predicated what my rating would be solely based on the trailers; a 2 on 4. After my watch, I wasn’t too surprised that my call was right on the money.

THE UNINVITED had a couple of Aces in its deck. It was beautifully shot, with striking cinematography in tow and a talent at maximizing its gorgeous British Columbia locations for all they were worth. The ominous lake, the eerie woods, the shadow laced house interiors… damn! I want to live there! This baby looked lip smacking good! The fine cast also upped this one’s stakes, making the ride more absorbing than it should’ve been. Emily Brown, Arielle Kebbell and Elizabeth Banks gave it their all, providing me with 3 solid reasons to keep my eyes and one brain cell on the screen. And at 87 minutes; this one rolled out smoother than a hooker’s cheek after being back-handed by her pimp. The movie was uber tight (too tight for its own good if you ask me – it didn’t delve into anything deep enough) and was over and done with before any seat wiggling could come into play.

Problem was everything the original achieved this one failed at. The narrative structure was choppy, clumsy and definitely dumbed down BIG TIME when compared to the original. The first film had meat to it, an organic progression and layers; this re-telling aimed for the lowest of denominators. I swear Hollywood thinks we’re zero IQ idiots! Then we had the scares in the house being pretty damn pathetic in terms of execution and impact. Not only were the beats "off" but the “ghostly” apparitions wound up being mucho tacky instead of creepy. Suspense was sorely lacking as well. Don’t get me wrong the film would try to get my ass all riled up, but it kept missing the boat by a yard. And lastly; the manner in which it “explained” everything was simpleton at best. I’ve seen TV Movies of the Week starring Kirk Cameron with a better grasp at storytelling than this one.

So at the end of the “bang her every holes and kick her out your pad” jamboree THE UNINVITED made for a “whatever” watch. A good time waster if you will. But an equal to its Korean counterpart? Not even close. A remake that matches The Ring as to re-doing an Asian movie right? Nope! This one joins The Eye, Shutter and the Dark Water club as another proof that La La Land just doesn’t get Asian horror.
GORE
Silly ghosts and cadavers aside – nothing to see here.
ACTING
Emily Browning (Anna) had the cutesy look, grounded approach and expressive eyes to sell the role. She was very likeable. The camera loves Arielle Kebbel (Alex) and once again she came through acting wise. David Strathairn (Steven) was ideal casting as the testicules-less dad. Elizabeth Banks (Rachael) really sank deep into her part and looked smoking hot doing it at that!
T & A
Arielle Kebbell in a bikini always spells fun times in my book. And so does Banks cleavage shots. The ladies get some fit dude shirtless.
DIRECTING
Atmospheric, powerful framing and camera work – no tension – no scares.
SOUNDTRACK
Funnily enough while watching the flick I told myself “this sounds like Christopher Young’s score for Hellraiser II”. When I got home and checked who did the music – it was - you guessed it – Christopher Young. Another moody and chilling offering from the lad.
BOTTOM LINE
You want to see THE UNINVITED done right? Nab A TALE OF TWO SISTERS and call it time well spent. The original has depth, true scares, potent suspense and a much better handle on its challenging storyline. But if you’re feeling A TALE OF TWO SISTERS for dummies… THE UNINVITED is for you!
BULL'S EYE
The film was shot in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Emily Browning was born on December 7 1988 in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.

Arielle Kebbell was the AITH 2006 Mistress of the Year

VISIT THE UNINVITED WEBSITE HERE

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12:36PM on 06/12/2010
I liked that the ending didn't totally rip off A Tale of Two Sisters, and I will say The Uninvited wasn't a total waste of time. However, saying a movie "isn't a total waste of time" isn't exactly a recommendation. And it was hard to not compare this with A Tale of Two Sisters. But there is no comparison; A Tale of Two Sisters is a masterpiece, and a credit to Korean cinema.
I liked that the ending didn't totally rip off A Tale of Two Sisters, and I will say The Uninvited wasn't a total waste of time. However, saying a movie "isn't a total waste of time" isn't exactly a recommendation. And it was hard to not compare this with A Tale of Two Sisters. But there is no comparison; A Tale of Two Sisters is a masterpiece, and a credit to Korean cinema.
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6:45PM on 06/09/2010
I'm gonna have to SORT of disagree. I ADORE A Tale of Two Sisters. It's one of my all time faves and gets a perfect 4/4 rating from me, but this remake wasn't amazing. It wasn't even good, but i actually found it pretty OKAY. Nothing more, nothing less. I had a good time. I was behind the two main females and the acting was pretty dead on.
I will agree i wish it was more developed and not so dumb, but when i didn't think about A Tale of Two Sisters, the movie isn't bad.
I'm gonna have to SORT of disagree. I ADORE A Tale of Two Sisters. It's one of my all time faves and gets a perfect 4/4 rating from me, but this remake wasn't amazing. It wasn't even good, but i actually found it pretty OKAY. Nothing more, nothing less. I had a good time. I was behind the two main females and the acting was pretty dead on.
I will agree i wish it was more developed and not so dumb, but when i didn't think about A Tale of Two Sisters, the movie isn't bad.
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9:50PM on 02/02/2009

Haven't seen the remake, but...

I'm currently listening to the original film's soundtrack, and even without visual cues it's beautiful and very creepy just like the film. If a film can do this, why make it more palatable towards less open minded moviegoers? I say leave the good films for people who know good films and let everyone else deal with the guys who brought you Meet the Spartans.
I'm currently listening to the original film's soundtrack, and even without visual cues it's beautiful and very creepy just like the film. If a film can do this, why make it more palatable towards less open minded moviegoers? I say leave the good films for people who know good films and let everyone else deal with the guys who brought you Meet the Spartans.
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11:58AM on 02/01/2009

Two other points..

It always drives me nuts when people give scores for stuff when they haven't seen a movie, like the host of zeroes in this comments section. Kind of a pet peeve of mine. If you haven't seen a movie, don't score it (or just give an average score if you have no other choice) -- otherwise, it just screws up the "real" score.

Second thing, magicwizguy -- from my experience reading pretty much all of Arrow's reviews over the years, he's actually very lenient on review scores. The guy obviously
It always drives me nuts when people give scores for stuff when they haven't seen a movie, like the host of zeroes in this comments section. Kind of a pet peeve of mine. If you haven't seen a movie, don't score it (or just give an average score if you have no other choice) -- otherwise, it just screws up the "real" score.

Second thing, magicwizguy -- from my experience reading pretty much all of Arrow's reviews over the years, he's actually very lenient on review scores. The guy obviously loves horror -- in many, many cases giving movies higher scores than I would have. So if you think he's being too hard on a pedestrian film like this one -- trust me, he isn't. Your taste may vary, but there's no reason to be insulting because you don't agree.
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11:50AM on 02/01/2009

Largely forgettable...

I'd say you got this one pretty spot-on, Arrow. This movie was just kind of "there".

The first 75% of the movie, I felt about the same about this movie as I did about The Unborn. The only things that saved this one from complete suckitude were the acting and the ending (I haven't seen the original, so I didn't see it coming). I DID expect a twist, but this one even surprised me.

The rest of the movie was a bunch of slow shots, unscary [link] and a bunch of jump scares (only one of which
I'd say you got this one pretty spot-on, Arrow. This movie was just kind of "there".

The first 75% of the movie, I felt about the same about this movie as I did about The Unborn. The only things that saved this one from complete suckitude were the acting and the ending (I haven't seen the original, so I didn't see it coming). I DID expect a twist, but this one even surprised me.

The rest of the movie was a bunch of slow shots, unscary [link] and a bunch of jump scares (only one of which got me -- the stove bit actually made me jump like a bitch).

As for the poster who is referencing the Rotten Tomatoes score -- it scored a 37% -- hardly something to brag about.

This movie falls into the "watch it, and forget it 3 minutes later" mold that most remakes do.
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7:14PM on 01/30/2009

I have to say this...

This review, all of my reviews, are just ONE DUDE'S OPINION. I don't think I'm wrong or that I'm right for that matter, its just what I thought of a film. That's it.

You agree, dissagree - all good! We're all individuals and we're all gonna see shit differently. Uninvited was too slim-fast for me - especially when you take into account its solid base material ie A TALE OF TWO SISTERS. Its not awful as per my review - its just not all that great. maybe if I hadn't seen the superior original
This review, all of my reviews, are just ONE DUDE'S OPINION. I don't think I'm wrong or that I'm right for that matter, its just what I thought of a film. That's it.

You agree, dissagree - all good! We're all individuals and we're all gonna see shit differently. Uninvited was too slim-fast for me - especially when you take into account its solid base material ie A TALE OF TWO SISTERS. Its not awful as per my review - its just not all that great. maybe if I hadn't seen the superior original I would've been floored - but I did se it so there you have it.

As for my review being horribly written...I TOTALLY agree :)
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5:33PM on 01/30/2009
You don't know if it's right until you actually see it. Sometimes, like I said before, there are GOOD remakes. From the looks of all of the reviews, it's doing pretty good and usually critics tear down on horror movies. This one seems to be the better one because of the above average cast. I'm just saying don't just it because it's "another stupid, pointless remake." Maybe it wasn't suppose to be a horror but more of a thriller.
You don't know if it's right until you actually see it. Sometimes, like I said before, there are GOOD remakes. From the looks of all of the reviews, it's doing pretty good and usually critics tear down on horror movies. This one seems to be the better one because of the above average cast. I'm just saying don't just it because it's "another stupid, pointless remake." Maybe it wasn't suppose to be a horror but more of a thriller.
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2:42PM on 01/30/2009

Roger Ebert likes it?

I haven't seen the movie and probably won't. In fact I still have to check out A Tale of Two Sisters, so I can't comment on the movie itself. However saying Roger Ebert even liked it is the most ridiculous thing. A good rule of thumb is that if Ebert or Roeper like the movie then you should stay away from it lol. I generally agree with arrow the most on movies compared to other websites.
I haven't seen the movie and probably won't. In fact I still have to check out A Tale of Two Sisters, so I can't comment on the movie itself. However saying Roger Ebert even liked it is the most ridiculous thing. A good rule of thumb is that if Ebert or Roeper like the movie then you should stay away from it lol. I generally agree with arrow the most on movies compared to other websites.
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12:57PM on 01/30/2009

remakes...

Come on magicwizguy, this isn't Rotten Tomatoes, you don't go trashing the reviewer because you didn't agree. And as far as being 'horribly written,' Arrow's reviews have been my rule of thumb for the past five years, and as usual, this sounds about right to me.

The original Korean film, Tale of Two Sisters, is quite possibly my favorite 'ghost story' in the horror genre - a truly moving piece of work. Upon seeing this trailer some months back, I didn't realize it was a remake until I went
Come on magicwizguy, this isn't Rotten Tomatoes, you don't go trashing the reviewer because you didn't agree. And as far as being 'horribly written,' Arrow's reviews have been my rule of thumb for the past five years, and as usual, this sounds about right to me.

The original Korean film, Tale of Two Sisters, is quite possibly my favorite 'ghost story' in the horror genre - a truly moving piece of work. Upon seeing this trailer some months back, I didn't realize it was a remake until I went on IMDB to find out more about it - at which point I just had to shout, 'Why!' I dig that they switched things about more than the shameless Quarantine remake, but at the same time, I don't understand this endless compulsion of Hollywood to ravage stunning films, instead of giving more original, creative films their own boost. Actually - I probably do. Remakes are cheap cash-ins, because the fettered execs figure the majority of the populace is too lazy to weather subtitles and a foreign 'unrelatable' setting. And they're probably right - which is sad. Ace review, Arrow.
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4:46PM on 01/29/2009
That's fine, I was just thought it was odd that no matter how much you hate the movie, you seem to always say the acting is good and base it off how hot they are, rather than legit skill (case in point: Odette Yustman). To each their own I suppose.
That's fine, I was just thought it was odd that no matter how much you hate the movie, you seem to always say the acting is good and base it off how hot they are, rather than legit skill (case in point: Odette Yustman). To each their own I suppose.
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4:27PM on 01/29/2009

right...

I'm not going to use your review because it's horribly written. Obviously, critics like the movie. Even Roger Ebert does. Just go to Rotten Tomatoes. Sometimes there are more to horror movies than scares and violence and gore. That's why there are movies like this out there, that cares about the characters.
I'm not going to use your review because it's horribly written. Obviously, critics like the movie. Even Roger Ebert does. Just go to Rotten Tomatoes. Sometimes there are more to horror movies than scares and violence and gore. That's why there are movies like this out there, that cares about the characters.
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3:50PM on 01/29/2009

Hey Rasporange Pant

If I feel they suck, I will say they suck, if I feel they don't suck, then that's what I'll say. Nothing to Hmmm about really. Hollywood doesn't go out of their way to cast bad actors ya know :)
If I feel they suck, I will say they suck, if I feel they don't suck, then that's what I'll say. Nothing to Hmmm about really. Hollywood doesn't go out of their way to cast bad actors ya know :)
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2:15PM on 01/29/2009

Hmm...

I haven't seen this yet and don't really plan to, but I always find it off that you never say anyone is bad in anything.

Your acting section is always like "...such and such held their own and is incredibly hot" and "_____ was very engrossing in her underwear and an underwritten part", but you never ever say anyone sucks, just that they were engrossing and hot. And that's plain damn weird.
I haven't seen this yet and don't really plan to, but I always find it off that you never say anyone is bad in anything.

Your acting section is always like "...such and such held their own and is incredibly hot" and "_____ was very engrossing in her underwear and an underwritten part", but you never ever say anyone sucks, just that they were engrossing and hot. And that's plain damn weird.
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