DVD region 2. Palisades Tartan.
film formerly known as R-Point is re-released
with a more commercially immediate title and exclusive availability
from Sainsburys - a good opportunity for anyone who had previously
missed this Korean horror movie (like me) to catch up with it.
supernatural war film is a surprisingly potent sub-genre, often
with its own rules of engagement - soldiers lost in the combat
zone finding themselves facing a far worse enemy than they had
ever expected, in the form of both ghosts and themselves. Ghosts
of War follows these rules pretty closely, as a platoon
of misfits head out in search of a missing patrol during the Vietnam
War. Sent to desolate patch of land known as R-Point - a place
we're told both the North and South Vietnamese avoid -they bicker
amongst themselves, and then start to realise that not all is
as it seems here. Holed up in a deserted and crumbling villa,
they see (or perhaps hallucinate) ghostly figures, and trust between
them crumbles as they lose their grasp on what is or isn't real.
first thirty minutes or so are hard going if you're not into movies
about 'asshole' (the most frequently used name in this film) military
units trying to out-macho each other (on the other hand if you
think the 1980's was cinema's greatest era, you'll probably be
orgasmic). But once the horror begins, the film kicks up several
notches in quality, mixing genuinely eerie moments with effective
doses of paranoia, as the unit struggles against the forces that
threaten them. In the end, Ghosts of War becomes
a twisting, Twilight Zone-ish morality tale that
has no easy answers and leaves it up to the viewer to decide just
what they've seen.
you enjoy Asian ghost stories, this is worth seeking out; and
if you think you don't, there is enough originality here to perhaps
make it an exception. Well worth tossing into your grocery basket
next time you're shopping!