The Grudge (2004)

2004_the_grudge_009The remake of “Ju-On” now called (sigh) “The Grudge” is the perfect example of faulty westernization in which the translated work suffers in the translation and completely misses the point of the original. The original had the surprise ending which makes you re-assert your thoughts on the characters, while the remake has the “You thought the monster was dead, but its not!” ending that I yawned at.

What a terrible segue into a definite sequel. “The Grudge” is boring, so boring I fell asleep at times. It tries to make a heroine and romantic lead, but none of it works because there’s still not a lot of plot, and still no character development, we see even less of Kayako so the film has nothing to work with. Westernization at its finest, all flash in the production, no cash in the plot. I fell asleep at certain points, and is it scary? No. Not at all, because the writers get too anxious for their own good and try to make a plot out of a film that has no plot.

We do not learn of the murder that started the curse, we do not learn about the other victims, this leaves nothing to the imagination (big surprise, it’s American cinema), and there’s nothing to investigate here because we have everything spelled out for us (Again, big surprise). I was ghastly disappointed by the ending, ghastly disappointed I say. I assumed since the original director would give it some taste it’d be a spirited effort to translate the Asian mythos and ghost story for American audience.

But alas, nothing but boring, disjointed melodramatic pretension. Gellar is basically wasted with wooden acting, Behr is wasted with barely a character to play, and all originality and creativity is lost for the worst. Meanwhile, if you want scares and an ending that makes sense go for the original. The original is the best after all. While this remake garners great effects, it does not the effort remotely entertaining. The remake to “Ju On” is not a good film at all, which is sad since Shimizu could have lent the American version a new flair.