Film Review: A Grudge From Beyond

Image result for the grudge 2020

The Grudge has been revived yet again.  This time, the screenplay is written and directed by Nicholas Pesce. It was based on the original idea created by Takashi Shimizu.  According to the Japanese legend, the spirit of someone who had died a violent death can live on in some vengeful and rage-filled existence and just be a real nuisance to the living.  The film stars Andrea Riseborough, Demian Bichir, John Cho, and Lin Shaye.

The film is presented in a non-linear presentation which was how it was done in the previous installments.  The tendrils of this curse reaching into the minds and taking the lives of various couples.  It’s a pretty effective technique, although it does make it a little challenging to follow.  It turns out this film turned out to be something dubbed a “sidequel”.  It has connections to the previous films done around 2004. It has been quite a while since I saw those films, so I was a little lost in trying to remember the events of those.

There were some effectively disturbing and spooky scenes that did cause the occasional goosebumps.  The main cast was fine in their performances.  The visual effects were pretty convincing.  In spite of that, there was not much to make this a standout in the horror genre.  The overall reactions from the professional critics have been quite negative.  I didn’t find the movie to be that bad overall.  It’s not great, but it’s not much worse than most films of this sort.  There just isn’t much I haven’t seen before.  I tend to appreciate the Japanese horror films, but creepy dead girl walking around with wet hair seems to have developed into  a pretty standard trope in these things.

The movie evoked some of the intended reactions in me while I am watching it, but it misses the mark when it comes to leaving a lasting impression.

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