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After a run of relatively disappointing movies, Danny and Oxide Pang return with a vengeance in "Re-Cycle," a hauntingly vivid journey that sends Angelica Lee into such a world. This is not your typical Asian horror movie with ripoffs of "The Ring" -- this is a dark fantasy journey into a ghastly, bittersweet otherworld full of secrets and lost things, like a Lewis Carroll horror story.
Ting-Yin (Lee) is a bestselling author riding high with her "My Love" trilogy, which is being adapted into a movie. Her next book, a horror novel named "Re-Cycle," is announced as well.
All seems perfect, save for an ex-boyfriend (Lawrence Chou) who has just divorced his wife and wants back. And when Ting-Yin starts writing "Re-Cycle," she starts glimpsing a strange long-haired woman in her apartment -- and ends up inadvertently wandering into a desolate, ruined city full of zombies, stairs, creaking carnivals and masked children. It's a dimension of the discarded, and it stretches through nightmarish forests, cities, fields and decaying bridges filled with witchlight.
When she's attacked by ghouls, Ting-Yin is rescued by a little girl who offers to help her get back home. After consulting with an old man in a vast library, Ting-Yin is told that she must find the Transit that leads back to her world.Read more ›
This film starts out with some of the best chill/thrill/ photography that I have seen in a long time. It also works off the stark beauty of the lead actress whose subtle emotional displays are frequently seen in close up. Blu-ray is usually showcased with nature scenes, but its ability to capture the human face is what most interests me. The special effects here are also beautiful and run seamlessly along side of a variety of camera and editing techniques. It is a feast of the small stuff done well, like chopping a few seconds of film out of an action sequence to create a feeling of dimensional shift and unreality. Each scene is artistically framed for maximum effect. Especially in the begining of the film, the edits literally keeping you jumping. Elements of traditional Asian masks are blended with simple make up techniques to keep the film from becoming bogged down with too much flashy CGI. Often I find that CGI films have one or two scenes that everyone talks about and once you've seen them the funs over. This film uses a variety of subtle color shifts, camera movements and sets to approach each scene with a fresh cinematic voice. Speaking of voice, you really don't have to worry about the film being in Cantonese. Once the films gets going there is minimal dialog.
I was so visually engaged by the film that I did not began to worry about the plot until the last 15 or 20 minutes. Even after the social issue theme intruded on what had been a very good visual ride, the film managed to shift gears again at the very end and give me something to mull over as the credits rolled. But that last 15 could have been so much better. If I could edit this film I would take out a jarring, sugary sweet montage sequence near the end.Read more ›
It's ambitious, but it just doesn't work. This film can't seem to decide whether to scare or amaze, and though it does the latter very well in several scenes (the alleyway filled with amusement park rides was breathtaking) it doesn't save it from embarrassments like the cave of abandoned fetuses, or the cheap looking zombie hoards... cringeworthy! And even when the visuals are high quality and evocative, the synthesized score overpowers any quiet eeriness they're trying to convey and makes the action seem cheesy and comic.
If this film had been shorter, had less (or just NO) dialogue, and a better score, it would've made a nice art movie.
Obviously, I deluded myself into believing that Re-Cycle was trying to be something it was never meant to be. Needless to say, I was severely disappointed after an initial viewing. Where were all of the incredibly disturbing, blood-soaked images? Where were the detailed puzzles? Where were the violent death scenes? They were nowhere - and I was angry that Re-Cycle turned out to be its own movie with its own themes. Go figure.
Months later I started to think of the movie more and more. I thought to myself, "Yeah, that movie was mediocre, but that one scene was really cool." Then I pondered, "Wow, that other scene was sweet too, and that other one was awesome." Eventually, I decided to give it another go. That "other go" happened last night, and I ended up watching one heck of a movie.
The fantasy elements kick in at around the 40-minute mark, but Re-Cycle doesn't stoop to boring you during the opening segments with superfluous exposition. From minute one it grabs you with some well-executed (albeit conventional) horror elements that become much less conventional during a second viewing when you identify references to the main theme of the film.
Once the fantasy elements hit, Re-Cycle becomes a non-stop fantasy adventure. I cannot remember a horror film in recent memory with such relentless pacing.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A great movie to enjoy alone or with friends n family... This movie takes one to a new dimension of unknown reality, full of surprises and adventures from beginning to end...Published 7 months ago by Joel Angel Mayton
This is very clearly a pro-life film; it smacks you in the face with that message several times. There's nothing subtle about it. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Einsatz
This is the best foreign film I have ever seen and I can see it over and over.best imagery,best story line , very scary and I love it.Published 11 months ago by tarah v.
I really liked the overall plot and idea. But I think some of the details and motivations could have been polished a bit more. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Tony
At first I thought this would be mostly another Asian ghost story, but it turned into a delightful and touching Alice In Wonderland type experience. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Binky Chottorrhœhia
Great movie is you like a surreal horror, This movie never quite goes in the direction that you expect, and just when you are certain it cannot get any stranger.....it does.Published 17 months ago by Timothy M. Mccutcheon
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