View Full Version : Dark Water

Conner H
08-02-2003, 07:04 PM
PLOT (from PokerIndustries.com):
Yoshimi is fighting to gain the legal custody of her five-year-old daughter while the two live in a dark and musty apartment building. Yoshimi is already insecure and uncertain about her future with her daughter, and now she is haunted by a lifelike, murky water dripping through the ceilings and walls, and by the almost taunting appearances of a small red bag. Disturbed by the events that are plaguing her building, Yoshimi wants only to get on with her life. But something much darker is waiting for her, and her simple wish may not be answered.

Dark Water is terrifying, no two ways about it. There is absolutley no gore, but the ghost scares are some of the most harrowing scenes put to film. The scare shots are spaced out a little with drama scenes, which will confuse jaded horror fans on what type of movie this is. Drama is nessescary in a horror movie, as it helps us care about the characters and spaces out the scares so we dont become desensitized to them, but some will see it as a little much. Still, this is only a minor handicap to a select few in an amazing film. The drama scenes are not wasted, and really help the plot move along. The atmosphere is terrifying (when's the last time you actually gripped your seat the minute the brooding music came on, anticipating something horrifying?) and the storyline is excellent. The ending is a real tear-jerker too. 9/10

Great letterbox picture. Unfortunatley they didn't have an option to squeeze all the subtitles in the bottom black bar (for us viewers not blessed with 16x9 televisions). Still, the subs have black outlines so they're always viewable (a HUGE problem with the Tartan Ringu DVD). There are no typos or "Engrish" like grammatical mistakes. Unfortunatley, there are NO special features. 7.5/10

Bill Pissott
08-02-2003, 07:10 PM
One of my favorite films! The atmosphere and sense of dread are so thick, you really can cut it with a knife. Spooky, spooky stuff from Nakata and quite a few notches above his "Ring".

Conner H
08-02-2003, 07:12 PM
Originally posted by Bill Pissott
One of my favorite films! The atmosphere and sense of dread are so thick, you really can cut it with a knife. Spooky, spooky stuff from Nakata and quite a few notches above his "Ring".

I agree 100%. I feel I didn't praise it enough. It RULES Ring.

Christoffer S
08-03-2003, 04:44 AM
This will be released next month or so in Sweden.
So I guess Ill have to pcik it up :)

Disco Stu
09-09-2003, 03:48 PM
I finally watched this a few days ago after owning it for months (and I rented Chaos last night), and put some thoughts together.

I'd have to say that Hideo Nakata is an extremely talented director, who thrives on creating dread inducing atmosphere out of simple elements. And when he is working on the mystery rather than the revelation of the story, the movie works very well. Nakata clearly storyboards all of his shots in advance, each frame seems to be taken out of a graphic novel, and when he is in complete control, letting the audience in with new details bit by bit, while simultaneously tantalizing and teasing us by throwing in creepy elements that haven't received an explanation, he is amazing. The use of sound, especially the music, is superb. The stationary camera is enormously effective. Nakata has a way of lingering on a shot a little too long, usually while the characters do not move or say anything, increasing the creepy effect of the situation. He uses striking imagery, especially with the use of the watermarks in the ceiling, and an enormous (and enormously earned) scare, late in the film. The dirty look of the home and the dark corners that seem to penetrate each frame, the dingy colors, are infectious to the overall design of the movie, which only makes it more unsettling.

But the last 15 minutes, which play like a concession to someone, I'm not sure who, defeat the entire movie.

Spoilers below******

If the movie is supposed to play on a realistic level, what is the explanation of where the mother went? Why is there no thought of ever looking for her? If it is fantasy, what is the hold that the water tower has over everyone? If the building has been abandoned for 10 years, why is the inside of the apartment exactly the same, in terms of its condition? Since the lost little girl keeps making appearences over and over without physical or metaphysical explanation, is she only there to represent the mother's lost childhood as well, which was noted by the aunt in an earlier scene? The last 15 minutes do nothing with the story and leave everything unexplained on all levels. They gave me more questions and more frustration that Nakata didn't finish his story outline. I also noticed that these were the first scenes in which Nakata used handheld cameras, and that just reinforces his lack of control.

Spoilers Over******

I would suggest that Nakata work with another driector similarly to the way that Jeuent and Caro did on Delicatessen and The City of Lost Children, where one worked on the images and the other worked with the actors and the dialogue. The story seemed realistic, but the acting was shrill and and forced by the mother, and everyone else was a cypher. Only the little girl stood out for her naturalness. If Nakata can make a movie this creepy with a half thought out story (and I feel similarly about The Ring, brilliant first 1/2 before petering out once the explanation sets in), imagine if someone else can sort out the details for him and he can concentrate on the misc-en-scene.

Al Edwards
05-03-2005, 05:02 PM

05-05-2005, 10:12 PM
AW and I just bought the HK disc. :( Oh well, the quality is decent and it only cost me ten bucks. I really enjoyed the movie itself. It was much more frightening than Ring. Although I couldn't help noticing countless similarities between the two.

Jari K
05-06-2005, 01:17 AM
Well HK-disc has DTS, and it was cheap, so I doubt that US-release will have the DTS-track. ;)

05-07-2005, 09:51 AM
I'm not DTS compatible. :( Hell I don't even have 5.1 anymore.

Jari K
05-26-2005, 11:19 AM

"ADV Films will release Hideo Nakata's Dark Water on June 21st. The Japanese ghostly thriller arrives with a fullscreen transfer, Japanese Dolby Digital stereo and English subtitles."