Sarah Michelle Gellar, Yuya Ozeki, Bill Pullman, Ryo Ishibasha
Directed by Takashi Shimizu
An American nurse faces a haunting responsible for multiple deaths in a Tokyo house.
Karen (Gellar) is sent to help an elderly woman with dementia when her coworker has been absent from work for two days. She experiences a bad vibe when she finds a little boy shut away in a closet. When she enters the old woman’s bedroom and sees for herself a spirit, Karen reaches to the police and researches the haunting.
The Grudge sets up the viewers for a horror movie with unexplained deaths in the beginning. It’s creepy and dark without going overboard to make it seem fake. The premise of the haunting is explained when a police officer explains how when someone dies, their emotion of hate or anger is left behind. The Grudge uses crosscutting to show the viewers the story of the previous owners of the house who mysteriously disappeared and what is going on in the present day with Karen. By the end of the movie, the haunting feels real, like it could be something that has happened in real life.
There’s a specific sound in The Grudge that builds tension as the spirit gets closer and closer to its subject. It’s a type of sound made in the back of the throat, that sometimes kids do just because it can be annoying or fun. If you want to hear it, click here, but be warned it can be spooky if you remember the movie.
This movie was based on the Japanese movie Jo-on: the Grudge which might be scarier because it’s the original. Between the long black hair, powdered white faces and black eyes, the spirits won’t leave your mind alone when the movie is over. The build up of suspense will induce hands covering the eyes for most of this movie.