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Review Shutter (2004): One of the scariest films ever made!

genre: horror, mystery

Shutter might not thread new paths or reinvent the genre. But it absolutely does the things a good horror should do. Shutter tells a good story and doesn't waste time to build up tension and dread. In a way that it actually leads to something substantial.

A very good friend of mine visited me in the weekend and we were in the mood for some horror. Browsing on Netflix we came across Shutter (2008). I was very aware of this remake and was curious but couldn't bring us to actually watch it since I didn't want to ruin and spoil the viewing experience of the far superior original. Is it fair of me to state that it is superior? Absolutely. American remakes of Asian horror films have been an absolute disaster since they drastically change what made those originals good in the first place. And it might have been a long time for me to have actually watched the original I do remember being thoroughly impressed by it. So we decided to watch it and I can tell you it was yet again an absolute joy. More so this time because I got to watch my friend jump up several times. 

Shutter very rarely warns you of what's coming with loud noises or music. When it does indicate something is about to happen it always happens in a way you still get caught off guard. The few jump scares that are in this one are incredibly effective. More so since they are backed up by a constant feeling of dread and unease. You know things aren't quite right but you just don't know what exactly. Our sympathy lies with main character Tun (Ananda Everingham) but gradually events will be revealed to you that puts the character in a different light. The slow reveal is what helps add to the suspense. However I would have liked it had they given more background on him and the dynamics between him and his friends. It's something you are expected to accept but undoubtedly will raise all kinds of questions. Sure I may be nitpicking somewhat here but I do think a little psychology can make the overall experience even more compelling especially on multiple viewings. 

The story surprisingly contains elements that are very touching and endearing. More importantly it's these elements that are at the heart of the terror. That is sheer brilliance of you ask me. Naturally I can't spoil why. Just trust me on that. As far as I am concerned Shutter is a masterpiece. It's one of those that will leave a lasting impression and will emote to you in ways you never could expect. 

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