tek's rating:

The Grudge (PG-13)
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This came out in 2004, but I didn't see it until 2016. It's an American/Japanese remake of the 2002 Japanese film "Ju-on: The Grudge," and was directed by Takashi Shimizu, who also directed Ju-on. The movie is one of several American remakes of Japanese horror movies during the Aughts.

The movie is set in Japan, but most of the major characters are American. It begins with a college professor named Peter Kirk (Bill Pullman) killing himself. Sometime later, a woman named Yoko goes to the home of an elderly patient named Emma Williams, who has dementia. Yoko has been her caretaker ever since Emma moved to Japan with her son, Matt, and his wife, Jennifer, and his sister, Susan. When Yoko gets to their house one day, she hears some strange sounds coming from the attic, and investigates. She's soon killed by the ghost of a woman named Kayako Saeki, who had been killed in the house three years earlier.

There's another American couple, Karen Davis (Sarah Michelle Gellar) and Doug McCarthy (Jason Behr, whom I know from Roswell), who have recently moved to Japan. Karen is an exchange student who is getting a college credit by volunteering at the same care center Yoko worked for. (Her boss is a guy named Alex, played by Ted Raimi.) When Yoko apparently doesn't show up for work, Alex sends Karen to look after Emma. And of course, some creepy shit soon happens. She discovers a young boy named Toshio sealed in a closet, so she calls Alex to have him come over. But before he gets there, Emma is killed by the same ghost who had killed Yoko, and Karen is scared out of her wits. (Oh, and Toshio is a ghost, too.) Alex finally shows up, and then calls the cops. A detective named Nakagawa takes charge of the case. And apparently some of his friends had been investigating the case of the Saeki murders three years ago, and they had all died. And throughout the film, we occasionally see flashbacks that explain the events that led to what's going on in the present.

Anyway, the movie has a fair number of effective jump scares, and some really creepy imagery. So... I guess I liked it. Oh, and I should say there were a couple of sequels (one theatrical and one straight to video), which I might want to check out someday. Or not, I dunno. And I'm also undecided about whether I want to see "Ju-on" or not. But, you know, maybe.


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