Top Horror Movies Club mostly because I had been looking to double up there for once. As soon as I finished up the review I did here yesterday, I got started on the review for Last Ride. I wasn't expecting to get it done, but I did. Looks like I am back into review mood since that is usually the first thing I start to think about when I get up in the morning now, which movie is up for review. For here today I will be reviewing a movie from Taiwan called The Heirloom (2005).
James (Jason Chang) returns to his family home after learning that he is the last in his family and now owns the house. It is really a mansion to be honest. The place has a dark history to it, as we see from the start of the film where almost all of his relatives are hanged in the house 20 years before. James talks his dancer girlfriend Yo (Terri Kwan) into moving in with him. Because of his job, James is interested in fixing up the place, and eventually wants to start a family with Yo. They invite their best friends over to help celebrate their new home and have a small party. Odd things start to happen, like weird noises and footprints in the dust, but the oddest thing is when their friends keep showing up at the house at midnight with no memories of how they got there. James has inherited his family curse, but what is the curse?
At the start of the movie we are told about how the spirit of a baby can be very powerful and a few other things. Then we see the family being hanged and then get into the current day story. The story is somewhat interesting, but because they had to throw everything out right away, it spoils the story some. There was still a twist I didn't see coming, but it was minor compared to the rest of the story. It is a shame because once the movie gets around to why the family was "cursed", we already have a pretty good idea. That twist, if you want to call it that, loses its impact since we already knew the spirit of a baby was going to be used at some point. Why else tell us about it if it wasn't going to be used somewhere? I didn't get why people were showing up in the house either. Writer Dorian Li and director Leste Chen try to explain it away by saying the spirit is trying to protect the family, but I didn't buy that at all. Call me stupid but I don't think to get rid of someone is to keep having them show up at your house.
To my surprise, despite the theme of dead babies and all, Heirloom is very gory at all. The acting seemed to just fine, I didn't really have a problem with any of the actors. What I found strange though didn't have to do with the acting, but the way the characters were handled. James is set up to be the main character, but he is soon taking a back seat to Yo. Yo goes out and fits everything together, where you would think it would be James that would be more curious about everything. Then as the movie starts to close, James becomes the main focus again. It was an odd movie and it has cause other reviews to say that Jason Chang isn't much of an actor because of it.
Heirloom also has a problem of starting a plot line and then having it drop out. A good example of this is when the police get involved with people turning up in the house. They set up cameras in order to try and see where they are coming in at. When that doesn't work out too well, cameras and police are simply dropped from the story line, never to be heard from again. As much as I am downing Heirloom, I found it to be an average movie. The pacing was good up until the end of the movie. It slowed down a bit instead of picking it up some. It got a little boring, but not real bad. The story line was also interesting once they got more into the curse itself. It is too bad that this had to get thrown out at the start of the movie, instead of waiting to just reveal it in the story itself. It would have had a lot more shock value, and hopefully would have made the flaws not stand out as much. I would say that Heirloom is worth a watch, but I can't say it will ever be a favorite for me.
3 out of 5 Is it any surprise I had to watch a movie with dead babies in it?
5 days ago