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Thursday, July 06, 2006
鬼域 Re-Cycle
[ZOMBiE CyGiG] ranted at 9:59 PM --- Post#115219435666265133

So it began
Today is the 1st showing day for Re-Cycle in Singapore and so qiao its polling day for AJC. So me and Yan (from VR-Zone) head down to Princess in Bedok to catch it. Yan was late for 2 hours 30 mins!!! I asked him out @ 11 and when I called his house @ 11.30, he was still snoring in his bed nia. Anyway, he managed to arrive at 1.30 sharp just right to watch the movie. Well as usual there wasn’t more than 15 ppl in Princess Theater 3 (largest), so we could choose our own seats and make ourselves comfortable.

I wun go into the detailed plot as most of the story comes alive only with the visual and audio effect and by telling too much it will spoil your enjoyment. Basically this author Ting-Ying (Lee Sinjie) was writing on a new story, Re-Cycle. The 1st chapter touched on a long haired and awkwardly tall woman sitting on the living room. But she cannot continue writing as she did not have enough inspiration and therefore trashed the script. As she continued, weird things like appearance of unknown long hair, screaming in the receiver, shadow in the shower room unfolded. Coincidentally all these tallied with the plot in her script, so she decided to confirm it by typing about the lift stopping at the 7th floor in the flat. She deleted away that line and took the lift outside her house down. Sure enough, the lift stopped at 7th floor. As she reached ground floor, things had changed. The outside was no longer the usual area outside her house. Rather it’s two blocks of ruined flats. The long haired women she “trashed” appeared and she escaped. She then met with a little gal and with the aid of her great grandpa she tried to escape from this damned placed.

The idea behind recycling
From what I understand in the movie, the place Ting Ying went to wasn’t hell as most commonly occurred to be in most horror movies. This is a dimension which abandoned stuffs get to. It is in fact a “more advanced” underworld, in which not only dead humans go to, but rather everything that is abandoned, from objects to even ideas. This explained the appearance of the long haired woman which was the unwanted part of Ting Ying’s plot.

The story came from the idea of a computer’s Recycle Bin, where it’s a center of all unwanted stuff. So once in a while, large storm clouds would appear and “absorb” everything it came in touch and had it recycled.

Besides clearing the recycle bin, you can also restore data on a computer. Thus the Transit is a place where Ting Ying would have to go to get herself back to her world.

Fantasy and Creativity

I see a lot of creativity and fantasy put in this horror film. The plot goes like an RPG where Ting Ying travels through places of obstacles to reach the Transit. The next place would always be a surprise as you cant imagine how the producers will portray the area as visually.

Throughout the movie, there were a lot of places that looked so familiar, as if they were ported over from some other sources.

The ruined flats resembles those seen in City 17 (Half Life), the part where Ting Ying entered the flat and looked into the units with undead look like a part in House of the Dead. The hundreds of staircases linking two blocks of flats reminded me of Hogwart’s moving stairs (Harry Potter).

When they arrive at the Bridge of the Dead, the idea that living human would have to hold their breath to remain invisible to the walking corpse seemed to come from Spirited Away. The rocky bridge and orange sky looked like those in Jedi Academy.

The other side of the ruined flat with the Ferris wheel and pirate ship and the part where corpses were hung on the tree immediately made me think of The Park (咒乐园).

And yes, the rubbish bin used by Ting Ying was exactly the one in the Mac icon.

Great Effects
This must be the horror show that had the most 3D effects. From the Toy land to the Embryo Tunnel to the Transit, computer animation enhanced the fantasy part of the movie. They had a good mix of real scenes with animation to make audiences keep guessing which is which.

For example in the ruined flats, the 1st scene in the alley between the two blocks was real. I guessed its either a really ran down flat or larger scale props in the studio. While the scene further out of the area are animated. The scene of the other side of the flat with the ferries wheel and pirate ship was real as well. But in between the scene of Ting Ying climbing down one of the hundreds broken stairs was actually animated.

The animation in the Embryo Tunnel of the fetuses was excellent. They looked just like those on medical documentary just that this time they could open their eyes and scream around. Really make ppl think before they abort their child.

In a few scenes, the idea of corpse dropping from the sky is good, especially when viewed close and near, bashing into the surrounding objects and slamming flat on the ground.

Large scale scenes
This movie has a lot of 大场面, or large scale scenes. The ruined flats are a good example. The camera showed the entire row of flat repeatedly and later on zoomed out to show the ruined city behind. The Toy Land featured a scene of two ppl sitting on a train and behind is a large infinite “sea” of junk toys.

Often there are scenes of masses of undead walking as well as the eccentric sky with the Recycling Storm Clouds. The use of large scale scenes injects the “feel of action” into this horror film. Thus these made Re-Cycle not only horror but partly action as well.

Detailed rotten faces
I had seen a lot of horror showing only seconds of most horrifying ghoul in the movie. But in Re-Cycle, the camera was paused longer for audience to get a more detailed view of all the various undead, zombies, corpses… The lighting was bright enough to see almost everything you ought to throughout the film, thus not missing on any features on creatures or buildings.

There was a part where the undead hanging on trees surrounded her, there you could see the fantastic make up of the undead while they twist their neck and walked in an awkward way as if their joints were dislocated.

We Cried!
Yes, I and Yan cried! The storyline towards the end was so damn touching, way too touching for a horror. The 1st touching part comes where they actually offered fresh flowers to the mass of undead as they walk by, and instead of attacking, the undead seemed to be very grateful and they held out their decomposing hands to receive the flowers. The 2nd touching part is where the little gal told Yin Ting who she actually was (im not telling u….). It really managed to invoke strong emotion in me in how things that were abandoned tried to know the reason why they were abandoned.

For those who enjoyed the previous film by Pang Brothers, which is The Eye 10, you will enjoy Re-Cycle as well. But if you really want hardcore horror or think that the storyline is way too absurd, out of context, lame and dun give a damn in animations…well…then save your money.

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