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We learn right from the start that something just ain't right about Apartment 1303.Read more ›
"Apartment 1303" isn't a great film, but it doesn't try to be. It is a simple haunted-apartment story, with no intention other than offering some entertainment and some chills, both of which it does just fine. The premise is actually a real and ongoing situation in Japan. When there is some known ghostly activity in an apartment, or where a suicide or murder has been committed, the rent becomes super-cheap although the rental agent often doesn't tell you why. Just by the price of the apartment you know something is going on.
Director Oikawa Ataru is best known for the Tomie series, and I believe this was his first venture into the yurei genre. He handles the conventions well, and maintains a nice spooky atmosphere for most of the film. Lead actress Hatsune Eriko (Uzumaki) handles her horror-duties well, and it is nice to see her pop up again. The movie derails a little bit when Oikawa goes for the special effects shots rather than the atmosphere.Read more ›
I hate the idea that I've seen every great Asian ghost story to come out of the Japanese New Horror explosion that began a decade ago, but the more mediocre offerings I see, the more I think maybe this subgenre has played itself out for another few decades. Apartment 1303 is definitely in the "mediocre" category, especially if you've seen all the big name flicks and have a good idea of the way these things are structured.
As the movie begins, Mariko (Noriko Makagochi from the recent live-action adaptation of Orochi: Blood)'s younger sister Sayaka has just rented the title apartment. During her housewarming party, she suddenly gets up, walks to the balcony, and flings herself over. Mariko, desperate to find out what would possess her sister to do such a thing, moves into the apartment herself and begins investigating. She quickly discovers that 1303 has had quite a few suicides, all of them young women, and has to try and figure out what's causing this before she becomes the apartment's next victim.
If this synopsis sounds familiar, it's probably because you've seen a few movies of this type; in fact, it's quite close to the plot of Ring, the movie that started the revitalization of the genre. So, yeah, this is one of those cases where if you've seen any movie in the genre, it's probably Ring, and this one's already got two strikes against it. That doesn't mean there's an insurmountable obstacle in the way, but the movie would have had to be sterling in at least some aspect to overcome it; there's nothing about this that qualifies. Not really worth it unless you've seen every other movie of this stripe you know of and just can't get enough. **
Most Recent Customer Reviews
As a collector of Asian horror movies I became excited as news of this movie reached me, so naturally I bought it to add to my collection. Read morePublished 12 months ago by vitrage
Even though I'm a serious Jhorror fan I'd never heard of "APT 1303." Watched it to review JP listening comprehension and was quite impressed. Read morePublished on October 14, 2013 by sparky_magic_rainbow
This movie was just about the most boring movie I've ever seen...about bedtime!!
If you want to watch something to help you fall asleep this is the one!! Read more
Why do the young, female tenants in APARTMENT 1303 keep dying? Well, this is a Japanese story by the writer of THE GRUDGE, so it has to have something to do w/ angry ghosts! Read morePublished on October 16, 2011 by Bindy Sue Frønkünschtein
Haven't I seen this before?
Even though I'm not a big fan of Asian horror films, I still give credit to these movies, since the creators do focus more on atmosphere... Read more
30 minutes I can always tell if I'm going to like a film or not. This one was a NOT! When it comes to horror Korea > Japan for me. Read morePublished on April 23, 2011 by maskedgamer
Having watched over a dozen Asian horror films from Japan, Thailand, Hong Kong and Korea, this one is definitely one of the better. Read morePublished on November 29, 2009 by Dean Werther
This movie was pretty lame. At first, I thought I was in for a treat, then when you see the ghost, all the fear just washed away. Read morePublished on April 10, 2009 by Nathan T.