Next up in the Netflix A-Z is the M selection! We’re taking a look at Hong Kong 2008 horror/drama called Missing. Many of you know that I do enjoy watching Angelica Lee especially after seeing her in The Eye. While her movies are never bad, they have a hard time measuring up to the fear in The Eye. I guess the only other one I’ve reviewed here is Sleepwalker and that was average. You can find the review HERE. The one that comes closest so far would have to be Re-Cycle and that one still needs a full review here. On another note, its kind of a surprising coincidence that I was just mentioning Hark Tsui in the review of The Mermaid and look here, he is the director.
Lets see how Missing is! 🙂
Director (and writer): Hark Tsui
Cast: Angelica Lee, Chen Chang, Isabella Leong, Xiaodong Guo, Tony Ka Fai Leung, Chen-Yue Chang
After her husband is killed in a mysterious accident, a widow is haunted by images of things she has never seen or experienced.-IMDB
An hour 58 minutes…. Give me a sec while I let that run time sink in for a sec.
Okay…I felt like this was endless. I think I took about 4 breaks in between and went off to chat with my husband, play with my cat and check out Facebook and probably paused and played a Youtube video in between. I mean, Missing has some great ideas but right from the opening credits panning across the cliffs and waves crashing on it and the cast and crew’s name blurrily showing up on the rocks, I kind of had an idea that this wasn’t going to be great. But you know, don’t judge a book by its cover, right? So, I trudged on. I think what the problem here is the core of why I think Hong Kong has a hard time making good horror movies. Missing is promoted as a horror movie and yet, it starts off as a romance, mystery, suspense, then flips over to horror for a good chunk in the middle and boom…surprise twist, then drama and romance to wrap it up. Okay, maybe I didn’t see the twist or I just didn’t care enough to think about where this movie was going except for wondering how many turns I had left before it would just get to the point and just end.
Let me rant one more paragraph before we get to some pros of the movie because you know I try my darnedest to find some good points in any movie, or what would be the movie in fighting through it, right? Acting and dialogue, my friends. I never think too much about overacting but does Missing ever overact. All the time! The reactions are ridiculous! The dialogue is so clunky and unengaging. Its a little crazy that this was written and made by Hark Tsui that has made great movies in the past. I mean, he made Once Upon a Time in China. On a more recent note, he made Time and Tide which wasn’t amazing but it still was entertaining to watch. Angelica Lee is decent in this and so is the small supporting role of Tony Ka Fai Leung, although I can’t get behind the hair style they gave his character. Even Isabella Leong was good, especially since she had quite a fluctuation in her character and she handled it all well. Talking about coincidences, Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny did come out recently and you know the young dude in that one, he is in here. Chen Chang is in this one and he does quite good also as the character Simon. Sure there’s overacting but the cast can only do so much with what the script offers, right?
Like I said before, there is a little bit of merit here. While its predictable and full of horror tropes, in his horror portion in the middle chunk somewhere, it does have a few good horror moments. It might be just because they build the mood well and Isabella Leong does well at creeping me out and Angelica Lee has these great scared reactions. And the ghosties are kind of scary and I mean, one in particular. The atmosphere was there. If they had built it around that portion and expanded on that and took out all that other mess, it could’ve been a decent movie.
There is no crime in sticking to one genre. There isn’t! I wish some directors would realize that. Missing had a tiny bit of potential of being good but it was lost rather quickly. The movie was slow and pretty messy and pointless for the most part. While the acting was okay despite the overacting probably because of the script itself, it fell a lot short of what I’d expect from a Hark Tsui production. Missing is really not worth the 2 hours you’ll take to go through this one which might make you feel like its 3 hours long.
Have you seen Missing? What are your thoughts?
Next up for Netflix A-Z is N! I got double feature in store for you…kind of. Can you guess what it is?