ContactSales: Universe Films, Hong Kong ([email protected])
Premiere: Venice Film Festival (out of competition), 4 Sep 2010. Theatrical release: Hong Kong, 14 Oct 2010.
Presented by Universe Entertainment (HK), in association with Orange Sky Golden Harvest Entertainment. Produced by Enable Film Production (HK). Executive producer: Daneil Lam. Producers: Alvin Lam, Pang Brothers.
Script: Pang Brothers, Thomas Pang. Photography: Decha Srimantra. Editing: Curran Pang. Music: Origin Kampanee. Music production: Payont Permsith. Art direction: Nuth Chimprasert. Costume design: Surasuk Warakitcharoen. Visual effects: Ng Yuen-fai (FATface Production). Special make-up: Chan Sze-ting. Creative direction: Ng Yuen-fai. 3-D stereo technical direction: Percy Fung, Francis Yau.
Cast: Rainie Yang (Rainie), Elanne Kwong (Ling), Lam Ka-tung (Chuen), Jo Koo (Chuen's wife), Ciwi Lam (Ciwi), Izz Xu (Hei), Rex Ho (Rex), Shawn Yue (Lok).
The Child's Eye 3D 童眼
2010, colour, 3-D, 1:85, 97 mins
Directed by Pang Brothers (彭氏兄弟) [Oxide Pang (彭順), Danny Pang (彭發)]
By Derek Elley
Sun, 05 September 2010, 03:12 AM (HKT)
Unimaginative horror movie, with six haunted youngsters in an old Bangkok hotel, is shock lite. Genre festivals, plus some ancillary.
Bangkok, November 2008. Six young holidaymakers from Hong Kong are stranded in Bangkok when the airport is occupied by demonstrators demanding the prime minister's resignation: Rainie (Rainie Yang) and Lok (Shawn Yue), who are on the verge of breaking up, Ling (Elanne Kwong) and her brother Rex (Rex Ho), and Ciwi (Ciwi Lam) and her boyfriend Hei (Izz Xu). Their driver takes them to the old Chung Tai Hotel, run by Chuen (Lam Ka-tung), where strange things start happening as soon as they arrive: Rainie sees a female ghost and Ling a disembodied hand. At dinner that night, the three men mysteriously disappear. Under Rainie's leadership, the three girls - helped by the young Man-man and her ghost-seeing dog Little Huang - set out to try and find them in the hotel's underground passages, in between being haunted by the female ghost and a strange monster.
Hong Kong's first 3-D horror movie, and the first Hong Kong production to be entirely shot in 3-D and HD, The Child's Eye 3D 童眼 (2010) is not as lame as the previous entry in the Pang Brothers 彭氏兄弟' Eye cycle, The Eye 10 見鬼１０ (2005), but only delivers a couple of real shocks in the whole of its 97 minutes, despite the use of stereoscopy. The fault, as with so many of the brothers' films, lies in the script, which generates little characterisation among its six young leads (actually three, for most of the film) and relies purely on eerie sound effects, sudden crashes on the soundtrack and ghost/monster shots for its horror. The Pangs still don't seem to have realised that the best horror movies always have strong psychological underpinnings which derive from a well-worked script.
Taiwan's Rainie YANG 楊丞琳 (Spider Lilies 刺青 (2007)) makes the strongest impression as the most pro-active of the girls, though she's given a very limited character to work with. As her boyfriend, Shawn YUE 余文樂 is largely in an extended guest role, and disappears for most of the movie, which is a long trudge to an underwhelming finale. The film makes occasionally effective use of 3-D, though in a conventional way — a jumping monster, a disembodied hand reaching into the audience — and won't lose much viewed flat. (The film also appears dully lit when viewed through 3-D glasses.) A brief visual effects bonanza recalls hellish imagery from the brothers' Re-cycle 鬼域 (2006), and the best staged section of all is actually a street riot outside the leads' hotel rather than any of the more claustrophobic scenes inside it.