Friday, December 28, 2007

Silk (aka Guisi) (2006)

Fear 1/5
Gore 1/5
Entertainment 4/5
Creepiness 1/5
Nightmares 0/5

Silk is an excellent ghost story with much more emphasis placed on the sci-fi elements of the story than on the scary parts. But it's a great ghost story, scary or not. The story is kind of involved, but basically goes like this: Japanese scientists create a substance they call "Menger Sponge" that is best described as a cube that sucks in and captures energy. The hope is that the cube will wind up having all kinds of practical uses, the opposite being the case. The scientist who invented the cube leaves Japan for Taiwan and begins finding other uses for the cube- mainly to find and capture ghosts. He is given clandestine assistance from the Taiwanese government who are under the assumption that the scientist is performing his work to help them.

The scientist, Hashimoto, captures the ghost of a small boy and confines it to the room it haunts inside a creepy old abandoned building. Hashimoto enlists Tung, a sniper with extraordinary vision, to help him read the lips of the ghost in an attempt to find out why he still haunts our world. Soon, things take a turn for the worse as the history of the child, as well as the motives and background on the scientist, unwinds and things get kind of spooky.

Silk is wonderfully creative in a nerdy kind of way. Some of the stuff they toss about makes sense, some of it is total horseshit, but it's all very engaging and entertaining. The special effects are not up to Hollywood standards, but they are not really the showcase of the film as the story and characters carry the film 100%. There are even some tender moments that are handled very well, especially for a horror film. And while there are elements of the "traditional" Asian ghost in here, there are inventive twists and angles that make it feel like it's something new.

Silk stands out among the glut of Asian ghost films being mass marketing today and offers hope that the genre can continue to move forward without sticking to the same old tired cliches. I really enjoyed this, despite feeling kind of dorky for doing so, and I recommend it.

- Complaint Dept

No comments: