Thursday, February 21, 2013

Mirrors 2 (2010) / Into the Mirror (2003)

Movies: 3.5/5
Video: 3/5
Audio: 4.5/5
Extras: 3/5
Overall: 3.5/5

Before I begin my review, I would like to state that I am counting this as a double feature. Despite the fact that the original South Korean film, "Into the Mirror" is presented in Standard Definition on the DVD. Scores for "Movie", "Video", and "Audio"; all represent ratings for both films combined.

Movies: 3.5/5

Into the Mirrors (2003): 4/5

What possess a studio to remake a foreign film? While I lived in Germany during 2003 to 2006, I would frequent the German movie theaters usually on Sunday mornings to see what film would be playing in it's original English language. However, when I would go there, I saw posters for films that would be from South Korea, France, Italy, US, UK, etc. In this day and age where celluloid has gone the way of the dodo in theaters, why can't we have foreign films more accessable for viewing?

Well, "Into the Mirrors" was remade by French director Alexandre Aja. The difference is vast between the original and remake. The ending to the Aja film was downright hysterical. I remember busting out in laughter along with the rest of the audience when I caught the remake upon arriving for my year of college in Hilo.

"Into the Mirrors" is a South Korean supernatural mystery film. No real horror at all in this film. There was only one moment where I seriously jumped and it was where the first victim died. Story revolves around a security guard working for his uncle when all these murders start occuring. We learn that a girl who's sister died in the mall and a fire broke out. However, her sister's still out there, alive... in the mirror!

This film makes you think. You have the natural and the supernatural causing confusing between the people investigating and trying to get to the truth of the mystery. I liked the film and I think that in comparison to the remake, I like that they wanted to reopen the mall after the fire.

The remake was like; "Eh, it burned down. We're not going to rebuild and reopen. It's just there! Watch over it!" I think it's as powerful of a film as the original Japanese film of "The Ring". I think it's worth a watch, despite it being in this Blu-ray set, only on the DVD! I give it a 4/5.

Mirrors 2 (2010): 2.5/5

What possess a studio to do a straight to video sequel? The first time I was ever aware of a straight to video sequel was back in the late 90's when they did From Dusk Till Dawn 2. I was like; "Huh?" The whole concept was alien to me as a child that they could sequels, or movies in general, and they'd go straight to video.

Mirrors 2, despite being labelled as "Unrated" on the box art feels more like it was intended to be a straight to television sequel that plays on the Lifetime channel. Even though there's gore, it could be easily be cut because it's all very short. It's a horror film that plays it too safe.

This film is more or less a remake of the original South Korean film; mall chain, the Mayflower, which Kiefer Sutherland worked for in the original remake is relocating to Louisiana. The only real mention of the events of the first film is just in the opening credits as newspaper articles drift in and out of frame. Max (Nick Stahl; Terminator 3, Sin City), is depressed over the death of his fiancee. Max's father is the owner of the Mayflower chain and offers him a job as a night watchman.

As Max starts working, people who high up on the Mayflower chain are slowly dying off. Max learns that the ghost in the mirror is a young girl who was killed by a Mayflower employee. Max must figure out who killed her before it's too late.

As stated in a previous paragraph, this feels more like a remake of the original South Korean film. There's even an homage to the original pizza cutter as the ghost tries to kill off Max's father after he tells him he quits. William Katt as Max's father should have been in the film more, at least in the final moments of the film. He should be relieved that the terror caused by the mirrors that's been haunting his stores over the years is over. I give this film a 2.5/5

Video: 3/5

Into the Mirror (2003): 1/5

Even though the film is presented in 480i, Standard Definition, the presentation is awful. You would not think that this film is ten years old. The video presentation makes it look like this movie was made atleast twenty to thirty years ago. Honestly, this felt like a VHS copied to a DVD. Did Fox honestly think this transfer was acceptable from the South Korean studio? 1/5

Mirrors 2 (2010): 4.5/5

In 1080p, Mirrors 2 is presented in 1.78:1. It seems that all straight to video sequels are always 1.78, whereas the original is 2.35:1. Shot in HD, the film is pretty much flawless in terms of detail. Only time when CGI stands out is whenever you see Elenore the ghost in the mirror. Colors and saturation look great in the daytime and dark and drab in the night time shots when Max is in the mall. I give the video quality a 4.5/5.

Audio: 4.5/5

Into the Mirror (2003): 4/5

Presented in a Korean Dolby Digital 2.0 track, the audio is miles above the video presentation on "Into the Mirror".. I had no real complaints towards the audio. Just the video. 4/5

Mirrors 2 (2010): 5/5

We have a nice and solid DTS-HD MA 5.1 track presented on "Mirrors 2". The movie is very quiet as we have Max trolling the halls most of the movie and trying to find Elenore's ghost. Considering that, the audio is very good. 5/5.

Extras: 3/5

We have deleted scenes, a making of, and VFX process. There's also a PIP function for the film. And a DVD copy of the film along with the original South Korean film on the other side of the disc. The bonus materials are all right. We do see that Christy Carlson Romano wasn't naked when she pulls her head off in the mirror. You see that whole green screen process. It was pretty cool. I give the extras a 3/5.

Overall: 3.5/5

I got this for $8 about a year and a half ago. I think for the price and that it's two movies, despite the fact that the original South Korean is on the DVD. It would have been so much better that the original film was presented in HD. I'd say give it a shot. 3.5/5.

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