The Coffin (2008) Review

Synopsis: After participating in a Thai ritual to ward off illness that involves laying in a coffin and having burial rites performed, Chris (Ananda Everingham)  and Su (Karen Mok) begin to see the dead. Su’s search for what miraculously cured her cancer but killed her fiancé leads her to a man that has been investigating the supernatural occurrence for years.

Review: Like so many failed attempts, this moody, atmospheric horror film presents a decent idea that gets lost in its presentation and it’s more about forgiveness and letting go than creepy terror. The basic idea that laying in a coffin and having a burial ceremony performed can cure diseases with a side effect of ghost sightings is a seemingly neat hook on the classic “I see dead people” story that gets bogged down and becomes kind of boring.

The awkward pacing is a bit off putting as the entire story seems to build to nowhere. The filmmakers present a cultural tradition that could be scary on its own, throw in a few ghost sightings and keep the audience as confused as the characters in an attempt to reveal, what exactly? The dueling story lines of Chris and Su do not always shift smoothly either, which makes the overarching plot hard to follow at times.

Stylistically, there were some beautiful, sweeping shots of the meadow that serves as the afterlife when Chris faces the ghost and the black and white costuming palate adds to the bleak mood of the story. The blue lens filter used throughout the entire movie, however, was distracting at times. While it created a sense of timelessness for the outdoor scenes, it was dark to the point of distraction during those set indoors.  This film is available on Netflix streaming, but I wouldn’t recommend it.

DirectorEkachai Uekrongtham

Origin: Thailand

This post was originally written by Leslie Shaip. You can follow her rants and movie reviews on her blog: Gallimaufry