The Unexpected . . .
Much better than I was expecting, this was actually based on the Korean horror Janghwa, Hongryeon by Ji-woon Kim. I don’t mind telling you, I haven’t seen the original, and now that I have seen this version – it would ruin it for me. The story was interesting and the characters were completely believable. Those Koreans know mind-bending suspense films. Of course, this American version was rated PG-13 – to put butts in seats.
We are introduced to two sisters as one returns from her stay at a mental hospital after witnessing her bed-ridden mother’s death by a terrible fire. She can’t remember anything about the traumatic event, and is haunted by ghosts trying to lead her through the past as she struggles to piece together what happened to her mother. Anna (Emily Browning) is the strong, silent type while her sister Alex (Arielle Kebbel) fits the role of mouthy, sexy independent brat quite well. There is a new guest at their father’s bedside, their mother’s nurse, Rachel, played by the unremarkable Elizabeth Banks. You could tell she was lacking direction for her character throughout. Her performance made no sense and needed more direction from the Guard Brothers. She is a talented actress, for the most part – they just didn’t drive her A-game out for this really great story.
The Uninvited will make you think, and while it isn’t chock full of scary images, it does have a few of the PG-13 variety. Watching it late at night will add to the experience, but this one is no terror of the mind’s eye.