HUNG BIU HYN SIN JI DAAI TAU GWAAI ANG

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HUNG BIU HYN SIN JI DAAI TAU GWAAI ANG

Horror Hotline… Big Head Monster

Soi Cheang
Hongkong, 2001
Fiction, 89min, Ome/mandU

HUNG BIU HYN SIN JI DAAI TAU GWAAI ANG

Soi Cheang
Hongkong, 2001
Fiction, 89min, Ome/mandU

Cast: 
Josie Ho
Mavis
Francis Ng
Ben
Niki Chow
Helen
Sam Lee
Sam
Michelle Zhang
Connie
Screenplay: 
Soi Cheang
Sunny Chan
Camera: 
Ko Chiu Lam
Editor: 
Angie Lam
Composer: 
Koo Lai-yip
Decoration: 
Lam Wai Sum
Costume: 
Lau Yut Fan

Production: 
Brilliant Idea Group
Format: 
35 mm
Color

Beneath its cheesy title, there lurks one of the most inventive Hong Kong psychothrillers of recent years in Horror Hotline ... Big Head Monster, one of the very few to come close to replicating the clammy chills of late 90’s Japanese films like The Ring. Ben is producer of a late-night radio show, “Horror Hotline”, that showcases phoneins of real-life ghost stories. A particularly nasty one is offered by a man, who tells of an experience 30 years ago when he and six pals at primary school found a mutant, bigheaded baby “with many eyes” in a cage near their school. The situation wasn’t helped when the school principal, an Iranian, tried to exorcise the monster by reading from the Koran. Along with an American TV reporter, Mavis Ho, who’s profiling his program, Ben tracks down the Iranian, now on the verge of death in a hospital. (...) In a similar way to, say, the pilot of David Lynch’s Twin Peaks, there’s a feeling here that the viewer is only being given a glimpse of a whole back story that has yet to be unraveled. There’s enough material here to fuel a whole series, of which this movie is only the teaser. In his second theatrical feature, after the interesting Diamond Hill, Soi Cheang shows a considerable grasp of atmosphere in individual sequences. Little is shown explicitly (including the title figure), and the gradual pacing is more similar to South-Korean and Japanese psycho-thrillers than restless Hong Kong horror movies, with some genuine shocks. (Derek Elley)