At the girls' high school to which she attends, Mih-Ah finds
a diary shared by two other girls. Intrigued, she secretly
keeps it, delving deeper into their lives and emotional state.
What initially seems to be a close friendship turns out to
be an altogether different relationship. When one of the girls
publicly announces her feelings at the school, the other feels
seriously betrayed, resulting in her suicide leap from the
roof of the building. However, there are sightings of the
girl after her death, and sudden events make the students
of the school fear for their lives. Mih-Ah finds the key within
a passage in the diary: Memento Mori, which means Remember
the Dead. The girl is back and only Mih-Ah suspects what she
is a difficult one to quantify. Although promoted as a horror
film it only metamorphoses into such during the last quarter
of the film. Up to that point you'd be hard-pressed to even
call it an emotional suspense story. How on earth did it obtain
an 18 certificate when there's little or no violence, no true
horror, and the only sight of blood is a bit of theatre stuff
splashed near the suicide victim's body? Put succinctly, Memento
Mori isn't scary in any way.
see this as a work of lost opportunities. The diary itself
looks varied and interesting in its design and subject matter;
you can imagine opening it up every day to find something
new. But when Mih-Ah discovers the pill in its spine and swallows
it only to find the passage "I'm still working on the antidote,"
there's no attempt to explore that fear or unrest - what's
it's actually doing to her.
stash of keepsakes in the piano is a nice touch, but the discovery
of the antidote comes as too much of a convenience and she
takes the new pill without knowing if she was ever in any
danger. The supernatural lock-in at the school could have
been handled so much better. There is no tension as the students
press themselves against the glass doors, and when Mih-Ah
is knocked to the ground in the panic she simply and inexplicably
stays there allowing herself to be repeatedly trodden on.
promotional purposes Memento Mori has been used in
the same breath as The
Eye (a personal favourite of mine), The
Ring (an obvious classic), and Audition
(which recently got an airing on terrestrial TV). Let me tell
you that this offering, whilst watchable, is not even worthy
to kiss the feet of those Asian greats.
include: Behind the scenes, a music video showing the score
being applied to the images, the original trailer, and Asia
Extreme trailers for other releases. The moving menus in diary
form are excellent, gaining the whole an extra point.
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