Heijastin

夜半無人屍語時

A pathetic but true love story between human and ghost.

The story is coloured by the hardcore comedy. We come across several shocking scenes. An unexpected emergence of the ghosts. Then, the parody of Titanic (1997) and The Exorcist. It’s also dangerous in another sense!

《夜半無人屍語時》DVD
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  • 導演:曹建南
  • 編劇/監製:王晶
  • 攝影:蔡崇輝
  • 配樂:羅堅
  • 領銜主演
    劉青雲 … 關
    朱茵 … 程之信 (Faith)
  • 主演
    張錦程 … 張國明 (Leslie)
    雷宇揚 … 雷剛
    馬蹄露 … 美美
  • 出品:金馬娛樂
  • 日期:1998年03月20日
  • 片長:90分
  • 日本版
    エクソシスト 最後の霊戦
    J.V.D. 2001年09月07日 DVD
  • English title: Step Into the Dark

毎晩12點…朱茵一家人會出嚟同你傾偈, 打麻雀…

This is the advertising slogan on the original Cantonese DVD cover. It’s very funny. I roughly translate this phrase as: Every night 12 o’clock, the people of Athena Chu family appears for taking a walk and talking with you, and playing Mahjong…

It’s rather much preferable. I want to meet 朱茵, even if she is ghost! You can see the name of "朱茵" instead of her role name. It means that her name is effective for the sales. Yes, I picked up this DVD in a shop when I saw her on the cover. Naturally, the figure of 劉青雲 was also important.

How I love this kind of ghost story!

林嶺東《陰陽錯》1983
林嶺東《陰陽錯》1983

I think that this is the unique Asian culture. The ghost is not equal to the demon. The world after death isn’t simple for the Asian. I don’t believe the occult. Nevertheless, I love these notions. The love between a man and a ghost, even though they can’t be united… It’s aesthetic.

The principal casts are ideal. This masterpiece is a match for《陰陽錯》(Esprit d’amour, 1983) and《靈氣逼人》(The Occupant, 1984). The basic scheme of this film is possibly inspired from both of them.

I found the coincidence among these films. The heroine of《陰陽錯》is 倪淑君 (Joyce Ni). In《夜半無人屍語時》, 朱茵 (Athena Chu) replaces her. Both of them are killed by jumping and appears as the ghost. And their beauty is as unbelievable as coming from the another dimension.

In《靈氣逼人》, 黃百鳴 takes the key role and the comic relief. In《夜半無人屍語時》, it’s 張錦程 (Emotion Cheung) and 雷宇揚 (Simon Lui). They have the same characteristic. They are extremely weak against a cute girl and a ghost.

The common scheme through these masterpieces.

  1. The hero is pure and tender. He has no prejudice even for the existence non human. So the love is born between human and ghost. But, the result of this love is pathetic, they can’t be united.
  2. The heroine is innocent and ultra cute. It should be. It’s the most important element to make the story dramatic.
  3. The comic relief. We absolutely need the comedy. Because the ghost story isn’t only for making the people frightening. A ghost story can be a little scary, much happy. It’s a typical Asian culture. I believe that if the ghost exists, it can be like a human who smiles.

黃百鳴 and Comedy horror

黃百鳴 is my favourite actor and producer. His works on Comedy horror is supreme. 譚詠麟 with the glasses in《陰陽錯》, he is obviously the substitute of 黃百鳴.

I love "開心鬼系列".《開心鬼》《開心鬼放暑假》《開心鬼撞鬼》were released on DVD in Japan.《開心鬼撞鬼》is one of my best films ever. I suppose that it isn’t well known, but the practical director of this film is 杜琪峰.

Shameless Japanese distributor named J.V.D.

《夜半無人屍語時》日版DVD
《夜半無人屍語時》日版DVD

Japanese DVD market is in chaos. You can’t find your wanted title without the help of the Internet because Japanese distributors modifies everything on the imported films without respect to the filmmaker. For example, the title, the cover and even the main casts are falsified by them.

This time, Japanese distributor falsified this film as a variant of "The Exorcist". The title is renamed as "Exorcist, the final spirit war". It’s so cryptic until no one can understand what it wants to say.

The advertising slogan is also absurd. They say "The exorcist confronts against the demons at the grand hospital gathering the wicked ghosts. The final battle has begin!".

WTF. They went mad. It’s a total delusion. They never watch the film even though they sell it. Always like this. Japanese film distributors, they are such shameless.

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