THE ROPE CURSE (FILM REVIEW)

A suicide is tragic enough, but there’s something extra about the image of a hanging body that never fails to chill one to the bone. So it’s not surprising that in parts of Fujian and Taiwan, that a ritual has been created to combat the horror of a person hanging by choice. It is given…

THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE (REVIEW)

Let’s get this out of the way. The hype for this film lies not in any revolutionary scares or monsters, but a gripping, masterful storytelling that brings forth the worst kind of haunting – that from within oneself. In essence, this is really horror in lyrical prose – an oeuvre to loss and the terrifying…

LABNOSH: THE FUTURE OF MEAL REPLACEMENTS?

Okay hold the eye-roll. I’m not drinking these to lose weight. Sometimes with my schedule (and also because I’m too lazy to eat out), I have thought about having a meal replacement bar or beverage to pacify the stomach. When I came across LabNosh on Qoo10, it seemed attractive to me because of the flavour…

Resident Evil: The Final Chapter (Film Review)

As with all franchises, words like final, ultimate and last become tools more for marketing than actual reflections of closure. Folks tell me that they intend to watch this film because “I want to see how it ends” or “I might as well finish it”. See how that works? Alice (Milla Jovovich) is back. Emerging…

Split (Film Review)

If you’ve seen the trailer, you’ll know the surprisingly clear premise of Split – the latest film from M. Night Shyamalan. A mysterious man kidnaps three girls and traps them in an unknown location. As they struggle to escape, it would seem that he has accomplices – except it turns out, “they” are him. It’s…

Master (Film Review)

The latest cat-and-mouse Master by director Cho Ui-seok is a formulaic crowd-pleaser. We enter the chess game between dogged detective and colourful villain in the middle of the set, but still get rewarded with the diet of car chases, double-crossing maneuvers, some gunfight, and an exotic locale – in this case, Manila, Philippines. The standard…

Age of Shadows (Film Review)

With super slick productions increasingly coming out from South Korea, one might say that the tides are turning towards the rise of Hallyu-wood. With sharp visualisations and even sharper jawlines, the attractive aesthetics of their resources are winning audiences over, especially when it comes with finesse for refreshing classic plots. Director Kim Jee-woon is one…

The Great Wall (Film Review)

The Great Wall of China – over 21,000 km of brick, stone and wood, is an undisputed impressive piece of work. It’s forbidding, inspiring, and a titan of a feat, being built upon the tragic backs of many forced into its construction. The passing of two thousand and three hundred years has taken away some…

Office Christmas Party (Film Review)

Overheard in the bathroom: “Erm, I know this is a Christmas show, but this isn’t really suitable for kids right?” I think the guy might have missed the memo about the M18 rating but – no kidding. Office Christmas Party is your urban hedonistic party nightmare come true. We know office parties are one of…

Incarnate (Film Review)

I’ll say it – Incarnate is what happens when you merge Inception with The Exorcist. It makes for an intriguing premise, reviving the tired genre, but presented a lot of missed opportunities in this film. Dr. Seth Ember (Aaron Eckhart) is gifted with the ability of going into the minds of the possessed. That is,…

Barakah Meets Barakah (Film Review)

“White stands for purity, pink for passion, and purple… well, purple stands for new beginnings,” she shares. “It’s popular knowledge don’t you know?” Sadly her suitor, Barakah (Hisham Fageeh), is as naive as he is attractive. The Saudi Arabic municipal worker who polices the city has a heart of gold, but remains clueless when it comes to wooing…

HIDE AND NEVER SEEK (FILM REVIEW)

Money and fame is to be had on the online world. And in the world of afreecaTV, a fictional channel specialising in horror named “Glow World” is chalking up some interest. The host of the channel, VJ Glow (Ryu Deok-hwan) is a douchebag skeptic, who bulldozes any possible spirits with his bravado and rapid-fire mouth….

4Love (Film Review)

It bears some comparison to 7 Letters, the other anthology debuting last year for SG50, helmed by the venerable Royston Tan. 4Love is mm2 Entertainment’s own gathering of four local directors, expressing their styles on that elusive subject of love. Unfortunately, all other resemblance to the former ends there. Scheduled to debut at our upcoming…

Shut In (Film Review)

I’m sure it sounded good on paper. This thriller debut by Director Farren Blackburn was to be a tightly wound psychological piece, taking us through the unravelling of a mother’s mind as her family gets snowed in and experience ghostly happenings. But as you probably guessed – it’s not. Although the movie shifts much-needed gear…

Ouija: Origin of Evil (Film Review)

Unlike the obvious doll in The Conjuring, Ouija: Origin of Evil’s child lead Doris Zander, played by the beguiling Lulu Wilson, is truly a haunting vessel for evil. When perky blonde bob and fair-faced child turns to you with milky eyeballs and a gaping mouth, there’s no reason not to recoil in fear. Director Mike…

SO Sofitel Singapore (Event Space Review)

If the glitterati had a secret central playground, SO Sofitel Singapore would be it. Encased in a grey, gravelly building, the neo-classical elements of the former telecommunications office are not as apparent when one is walking hurriedly through the passages in the area. But look up from across the street and the quiet majesty of…

Sofitel Singapore Sentosa Resort & Spa (Event Space Review)

Ah, sunlight – it makes everything better. From illuminating perfect Instagram photos to bestowing a golden sheen to our skin, that natural gift from Mother Nature gives everything an enviable spa-glow quality. Sofitel Singapore Sentosa Spa & Resort, languishing in natural daylight, has been a choice destination for events seeking that same quality, from luxurious…

Masterminds (Film Review)

Let’s be honest. This is one of those SNL casting heist featuring that anti-hero with an unpronounceable name – Zach Galifianakis. With that out of the way, and in the great tradition of other awkward leading men before him such as Adam Sandler, Ben Stiller and Steve Carell, the hirsute Galifianakis drives this comedic vehicle…

The Disappointments Room (Film Review)

I can’t help but feel like there should be an apostrophe in the title. But that’s not the only thing that is missing in this horror-mystery from director D.J. Caruso and writer Wentworth Miller. Dana (Kate Beckinsale) is an architect with a purpose, led by her well-meaning husband David (Mel Raido) to a recent purchase…

River (Film Review)

River (Gtsngbo) plays out a family’s complex relationship against the panoramic but sequestered mountains of Tibet. Director Sonthar Gyal anchors his film with stunning child acting prodigy Yangchan Lhamu, who takes us on a story arc of a jealous child rejected from her suckling habit as her mother bears a new child in her womb, while being…

The 9th Life of Louis Drax (Film Review)

Which came first – the over-protective mother or the accident-prone child? Aiden Longworth is the title boy Louis Drax – an intelligent but troubled kid who has an unfortunate annual ritual of getting into near-death experiences. As his mother Natalie, a nostalgic glamour figure played by Sarah Godon, saves him each year, she makes reference…

Apprentice (Film Review)

“F**king scholars.” If the chuckles from the audience are anything to go by, Boo Junfeng has once again demonstrated his skill in capturing popular sentiment. And yet he likes to encapsulate these responses in forgotten and unpopular (even controversial) environments. In this case, a prison. Larangan Prison is a maximum security security fortress, and houses “punishments…

Cream, Custard & Christmas

Christmas in the tropics is never the same as our pole-inclined neighbours. Visions of white can only be found floating around as soapy foam; or laid out in cotton pillows on sparkly trees during the yuletide season. For bakeries, scenes of unfamiliar snow are fastidiously recreated on fallen logs of sponge and cream. So what…