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Whispering Corridors
Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Whispering Corridors

The problem with Korean schools these days is that people die a lot, incessantly so it seems. While the sequel to this Korean horror “Memento Mori” (check out the Live Action section of my blog for the review of that) had mostly the students leaping to their doom (and shoving tongues down each others throats of course), “Whispering Corridors” (the first film in the series) has decided that the teachers are fair game too. In fact, pretty much everyone is fair game to what seems to be a rather angered ghost of a girl who died at the school some time ago, in rather horrific circumstance! Of course seeing as she has been dead for years, one wonders why she has started bumping off people at this present point in time, sadly I’m not going to spoil that part for you, you’ll have to see for yourself!

Anyway moving onto the cast of this happy wonderful school, we have Ji-oh and Jae-Yi, two very different girls who happen to start to become best friends. It’s the original story of an odd couple liking each other all over again, and a staple cliché of course. Moving on our other lead here is one of the teachers, Miss.Hur who happened to go to school with the aforementioned girl who died horribly, what a coincidence! Miss.Hur was the good friend of the girl who died, however she abandoned her on the night of her death as she was afraid of what would happen to her after a teacher (incidently the first one to die) told her that her friend was holding her back, and she would expel her friend if they remained friends. The rest of the cast really fit into the “all girls school” stereotypes you get in pretty much everything set in an all girls school. Not that it’s a bad thing of course, in fact I pretty much demand it, or the whole setting wouldn’t be as good.

The plot of the film focuses mainly on Miss.Hur (who is suspicious about the supposed suicide of one teacher Miss.Park at the start of the film) getting a rather creepy vibe from the school and her “semi” investigating the death. Meanwhile Ji-oh and Jae-Yi have the far more unpleasant task of actually being in class. The teachers here, (like the ones in Memento Mori) are pretty handy with their fists, one even shoves Ji-oh to the floor at one point and kicks her, hits that knock pupils off their feet are also not uncommon. So it’s rather satisfying when the happy phantom of the school decides to take out one of the most violent and perverse teachers by wrapping him in curtains, cutting his ear off, stabbing him and shoving him out a window. All rather satisfying really!

The horror here is rather cliché but pretty good, lots of “look behind you, zomg its going to get you” moments, and sinister looking school girls moving down corridors at bizarre jolty speeds. While these are things I’ve seen before, Whispering Corridors managed to pull them off well enough to be enjoyable. Nice little touches like living curtains, exploding windows and badly behaved classroom dorm signs also add to the “your doomed there’s no point running away” atmosphere that the ghost’s appearance pretty much signifies.

Of course, this wouldn’t be a horror film without a plot twist and this one delivers. True I had guessed it by the time it turned up, but hey it wasn’t a bad one and certainly made the films ending a lot more interesting than just “ghost out for revenge on those they don’t like”. I admittedly found the ending good enough to bawl at, but that’s nothing new (seriously I cry at pretty much everything), the story comes to a good and moving conclusion once we have the usual climatic chase/battle scene.

Whispering Corridors is good, it’s clichéd (what horror isn’t these days), but it’s good. The ghost scenes are nothing new, the characters are nothing new, but it’s still a great little film in its own right. Is it as good as its sequel Memento Mori? No, although that could be as I like my lesbian angst more than I like my ghosts with issues, but it’s still good, next my sites are set on the third film in the series “Wishing Stairs”.


8/10
posted by Mangaminx On Wednesday, January 18, 2006  
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