Ha Phraeng.2009.Banjong Pisanthanakun, Paween Purikitpanya, Songyos Sugmakanan, and Parkpoom Wongpoom


Here is something that we’ve started to forget, the genre of Asian horror films. We’ve been actually bombarded with a lot of western zombiefied and, especially, vampire films and we thought that the Asian days are gone. I guess we’re wrong when Phobia 2 was released in Thailand last 09.09.09 (notice the date and turn it upside down, very ingenious don’t you think?) This film is the current highest money earner in Thailand history.

I have to start off with a very small negative opinion about this film. You see, the film is divided into five short stories: Novice, Ward, Backpackers, Salvage, and In The End. If a western outfit made this, it would probably end up on the TV-movie genre ala Nightmares and Dreamscapes or Masters of Horror. Since we’re in a different side of the globe, it is quite possible that films like this doesn’t provide as much as the western counterpart.

I love horror films; from the light horror stories to the gory ones. And this one is no exception, even if the Asian horror films have provided us with the same mediocre films that it was hard for me to be uplifted whenever I see a new Asian film, I am just hoping that it is amusing for me.

Now, for this film, the people who created Shutter also gave more of their works in this film and it was awesome once again to see new ideas in an old style of the Asian horror genre. The stories provide us with a karmaic return for a fourteen-year-old boy, a story of a teenager in a patient ward, a western-like backpacker story, a modern type of story that involves car dealership, and another modern type of film that conveys a little bit of film shoot.

My favorite goes out to the Backpacker story. There was a lost in translation for the Novice story. And Ward, Salvage, and In The End stories are good too. So, if you’re in for your usual Asian horror story fix. This is a good way to catch up and try to enjoy the genre again.


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