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Phone

Hey there… Armando here and I just wanted to introduce myself real quick. From time to time you’ll see some movie reviews from me, although they won’t be new movies. They’ll mainly be movies that mainstream America will never watch. A splash of indies with a lot of foreign flicks… so with no further ado…

I’m a fan of Asian cinema, yet I’ve focused solely on Japanese cinema, but thanks to Netflix I’ve been broadening my horizons a bit. Lately I’ve been smitten by Korean films, with Oldboy kicking it off for me. The latest installment in my collection is Phone, a film written and directed by Ahn Byeong-ki. The most common critique of this movie was that it was basically another twist on Nakata Hideo’s Ringu, known to Western audiences as The Ring. While there are are a few things reminiscent of The Ring, most notably the vengeful spirit lashing out via some modern-day electronic device and a female reporter associated with it intent on tracking the cursed technology back to its source, there area a lot of differences.

A reporter named Ji-won, played by the beautiful Ha Ji-weon, exposes a ring of sexual offenders who are subsequently arrested and put on trial. Before the trial begins she receives threatening calls from one of the perpetrators who got rounded up in the police sweep resulting from her expose. Though the harassing calls are coming from someone who makes it more than clear that she is being stalked, the reporter makes the unwise assumption that if she simply changes the number on her cell phone the angry party will eventually have to give up on trying to keep her in a state of fear and panic. When she applies for the new number, only one particular number keeps appearing on the computer screen as being available. Time being precious as it is, she decides not to nit-pick over it and takes the number the computer glitch keeps coughing up.

Things then go from bad to worse, as she begins receiving a new set of calls on the new number. This has a very negative effect on little Yeong-Ju, played by the brilliant Eun Seo-woo, the reporter’s “niece,

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