I watched Train to Busan on an actual train to Busan

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(Oh, like you wouldn’t.)

So, I just got back from a trip to Korea. Knowing it was possible to make a day trip from Seoul (2h 25m by express train), I couldn’t resist the opportunity. I angled my tablet towards the window to avoid the mortification of looking like the cringeworthy tourist I was.

This is a better post than ‘sorry for not posting for forever’.  At least one person must have known what I was doing, especially as I was wearing a pretty ostentatious Frankenstein hoodie. So here is a badly-edited post containing some utterly pointless photos of an actual KTX train, as used in the movie!

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31 Days of Hallowe’en, Day 14: Someone Behind You (2007)

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someone behind you 2007 voices someone behind you 2007 voices

So I guess I kind of had higher hopes for this one; another to add to the pile of movies that never quite lived up to its creepy opening. This South Korean chiller was full of jump-scares that didn’t seem forced or clichéd or tone-destroying (Sinister, I’m looking at you).

Someone Behind You opens with the joyous business of a large family wedding; everyone is happy and jostling about and readiyng themselves  and then suddenly, ka-splat: the bride is face down on the floor, blood pouring out of her skull, a moderate amount of people freaking out about it. Only our protagonist, Gai-in (Yoon Jin-Seo) and her younger sister Ga-yeon (Kim So-eun) offer near-blank facial expressions as if they’d just stumbled into a public loo that had old-timey separate hot-cold taps instead of a single mixer one.

And I guess that kind of took me out of the movie a little bit, but I suppose it doesn’t matter, because it turns out that, even though the bride was lying in a paddling-pool-sized volume of blood, she’s still alive. And apparently a trooper, because when Gai-in finds the bride’s younger sister straddling her, it takes a good 40 or so stabs with a huge knife before the bride kicks it. Which at least gives us some proper screams.

someone behind you 2007 voices

From here, the plot goes a bit haywire, with everybody in Gai-in’s life trying to kill either her or each other. It’s just a string of people killing people, with our plucky protagonist sort of aimlessly wandering from perilous situation/potential plot information donor to jump scare and then rinsing and repeating.

There’s evil spirits and cute schoolgirl crushes and splatter-stabs-a-plenty, but I just didn’t care about the characters. Not even in that bare-minimum, “nobody deserves to die”-type caring that’s asked of you by horror movies with underdeveloped characters/fodder. I cared about this curse-ridden family and their extended loved ones about as much as they all seemed to.

ya think

ya think

The movie was adapted from a manga called Two Will Come by Kyungok Kang, which apparently contained a multigenerational backstory with some supernatural lore. Here, we don’t get much more than “it’s a spirit that possesses people”, without much effort to build up any other atmosphere, and that’s kind of lame. It’s a bit like a Diet Ringu.