Loner (2008)

September 16, 2010 - 10:13pm | AnthroFred
  Tags: Da-in Lee, drama, Eun-ah Ko, Jae-Shik Park, korea, korean, Loner, Min-seo Chae, Mystery, thriller, Woetoli, Yu-seok Yeong

Your rating: None Average: 2.7 (3 votes)
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Jae-Shik Park
Eun-ah Ko, Yu-seok Yeong, Min-seo Chae, Da-in Lee

This summer South Korean horror films were missing from the cinema schedules with the exception of one title, Death Bell - a movie which went on to become the biggest South Korean horror flick in several years. Naturally other companies wanted to get a piece of the action so Loner was rushed into cinemas a couple of weeks later. However, the movie didn't turn out to be as big of a success as the studio expected. In fact, it ended up being the biggest local horror box-office flop ever with less than 80,000 visitors in total. Now, I'm always sad to see local productions fail but Loner actually deserved to flop as it's the worst Korean horror film since Unborn But Forgotten.

For those of you thinking that this is a ghost story, you're wrong. I too thought that this was a ghost story but it's not. I'm actually not sure what it is, can it even be called horror? This was obviously a rush-job (it wouldn't surprise me if they were still shooting it when Death Bell hit the cinemas) as the story makes no sense at all for most of the time. From what I gathered this bullied teenage girl is publicly humiliated so she hides in her room and becomes a recluse. When the bully comes to apologize to her to avoid problems from her parents, the girl has turned into a filthy haven for bugs. Yes, bugs are actually crawling underneath her skin. She slits her throat so that the blood splatters all over the bully and that's where it all begins. After a while, the dead girl's best friend, Soo-na, also turns into a recluse (I'm not sure, is this some kind of virus or what? I don't get it) and refuses to leave her room.

To keep the story going we have four or five subplots (not horror subplots though) that end up being a bust and feeling either unnecessary or making no sense at all. This movie is either really clever or really stupid. Either way it's a failure because if it is indeed a clever movie, it's too clever for anyone to actually get it, and if it is really stupid (which I'm pretty sure is the case here) I just wasted 104 minutes of my life. Shooting the film must have been really depressing as well as the actors are forced to cry for throughout the majority of the movie. And if there's nothing to weep about, they come up with something new that they can shed tears over. It's so moronic. No wonder the acting sucked so badly, the characters are total wimps and any self-respecting actor would refuse a sloppy script like this.

Naturally the movie looks good though with its beautiful cinematography and I guess that's the reason why I've never been able to give even the worst of Korean horror flicks a rating lower than 1/5. The movie may suck but it is a treat for the eyes and that's always worth something. Still, Loner deserved to flop, it really did, this is a catastrophe of a horror flick and I can't believe this actually got made. If you're looking for a scary Asian flick, stay clear of this one, it's barely even a horror movie. It's a drama, and a really terrible one at that.

Can you say "A Tale Of Two Sisters"-wannabe? Loner wants to be more than it is and ends up being anything but good. It's a pathetic drama with a couple of horror scenes thrown in for good measure. I'm still not quite sure what it was I just sat through but one thing's for sure, I'm sure that I'm never going to watch it again. Avoid.

Review courtesy of our friends at Slasherpool.

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