- Movie Database
- New Releases
- Full Movies
- Spotify Horror Playlist
- Amazon Prime
- Newest Movie Lists
- 125 Best Horror Movies
- Movies w/o Jump Scares
- Movies for Newbies
- Movies for Gorehounds
- Horror Movie Trilogies
- Movies like
- My Watchlists
- Sharable Lists
- Submit Review
- Spread The Horror
- CREATE ACCOUNT
More results... (60)
Share a link to this page!
- Release Date: Sep 09, 2004
- Rated: N/A | Runtime: 97 Mins | Language: Thai
- Director: Banjong Pisanthanakun , Parkpoom Wongpoom
- Stars: Ananda Everingham , Natthaweeranuch Thongmee , Achita Sikamana , Unnop Chanpaibool , Titikarn Tongprasearth , Sivagorn Muttamara , Chachchaya Chalemphol
A young photographer and his girlfriend discover mysterious shadows in their photographs after a tragic accident. They soon learn that you can not escape your past.
Report missing or broken trailer
- Shutter 2004 - Trailer
What to Expect
This Thai horror film reminded me of a lot of Japan's more renowned horrors in that it thoughtfully relied on character development and a steadily developing sense of dread to produce real fear. There's a few jump scares but they're well-timed and used purposefully. Shutter is a lot like Kairo (Pulse) in style, only with a more defined and memorable ending. Quality horror movie from start to finish, and that finish, it'll get stuck in your head for months.
- Genres Supernatural
- Subgenres Female Revenge Haunted
- Streaming Netflix Shudder
Featured on: 125 Best Horror Movies
Shutter (2004) is part 1 of 2 in the Shutter series
Add to Watchlist
You need to login or register to add this movie to your horror watchlist.
Would it Kill You to Subscribe?
Get horror news, reviews and movie recommendations every Friday!
We respect your email privacy
Seriously, signup for our newsletter or Freddy will hunt you in your dreams.
Horror New Releases
The Latent Image (2023)
Soul Mates (2023)
Three Blind Mice (2023)
The Glenarma Tapes (2023)
Dear David (2023)
Humanist Vampire Seeking Consenting Suicidal Person (2023)
The Puppetman (2023)
Ghosts of the Void (2023)
Mega Ape (2023)
Monster Inside: America's Most Extreme Haunted House (2023)
The Exorcist: Believer (2023)
The Royal Hotel (2023)
The Jester (2023)
When Evil Lurks (2023)
Woman in the Maze (2023)
Sister Death (2023)
House of Dolls (2023)
- Big Bad (2016)
- Truth or Dare (2012)
- The Machine Girl (2008)
- K-12 (2019)
Resident Evil: Apocalypse (2004)
- Unhuman (2022)
- Eject (2010)
- All Eyes (2022)
- Cemetery Man (1994)
GET KILLER MOVIE RECOMMENDATIONS!
Discover new horror movies and get spoiler-free reviews every friday.
- For Parents
- For Educators
- Our Work and Impact
Or browse by category:
- Movie Reviews
- Best Movie Lists
- Best Movies on Netflix, Disney+, and More
Common Sense Selections for Movies
50 Modern Movies All Kids Should Watch Before They're 12
- Best TV Lists
- Best TV Shows on Netflix, Disney+, and More
- Common Sense Selections for TV
- Video Reviews of TV Shows
Best Kids' Shows on Disney+
Best Kids' TV Shows on Netflix
- Book Reviews
- Best Book Lists
- Common Sense Selections for Books
8 Tips for Getting Kids Hooked on Books
50 Books All Kids Should Read Before They're 12
- Game Reviews
- Best Game Lists
Common Sense Selections for Games
- Video Reviews of Games
Nintendo Switch Games for Family Fun
- Podcast Reviews
- Best Podcast Lists
Common Sense Selections for Podcasts
Parents' Guide to Podcasts
- App Reviews
- Best App Lists
Social Networking for Teens
Gun-Free Action Game Apps
- YouTube Channel Reviews
- YouTube Kids Channels by Topic
Parents' Ultimate Guide to YouTube Kids
YouTube Kids Channels for Gamers
- Preschoolers (2-4)
- Little Kids (5-7)
- Big Kids (8-9)
- Pre-Teens (10-12)
- Teens (13+)
- Screen Time
- Social Media
- Online Safety
- Identity and Community
Explaining the News to Our Kids
- All Articles
- Family Tech Planners
- Digital Skills
- Latino Culture
- Black Voices
- Asian Stories
- Native Narratives
- LGBTQ+ Pride
Happy Hispanic Heritage Month!
Celebrate Hip-Hop's 50th Anniversary
Movies and TV Shows with Arab Leads
Want more recommendations for your family?
Sign up for our weekly newsletter for entertainment inspiration
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Bad script, so-so scares mar Asian horror remake.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
A grumpy husband yells at his wife; a ghost haunts
Car accident early in the film shows victim slamme
Newlyweds kiss and embrace passionately, then the
One use of "f--k," plus other profanity,
Mac laptops; neon signs in Tokyo show various bran
Characters drink champagne, wine, beer. Men put da
Parents need to know that this horror movie includes some graphic violence, including the bloody effects of a ghost's assaults on victims. There's also a jarring car accident; a leap from a balcony that has a hard, bloody ending on the sidewalk; and a camera eyepiece that pierces a character's eye. The…
A grumpy husband yells at his wife; a ghost haunts several people; characters lie and commit violent acts.
Violence & Scariness
Car accident early in the film shows victim slammed by vehicle and tumbling under the wheels, and the car screeching and crashing into a tree. Repeated tense scenes in dark hallways or rooms; several jump scenes in which a ghost, shadow, or person appears unexpectedly. In the darkroom, Ben splashes a chemical on his face and hallucinates blood all over his eyes and face. A camera eyepiece explodes into a photographer's eye, leaving him dead (bloody face in close-up). A man leaps from a balcony with a thud (close-up of a bloody head/eye). Ghost sticks ugly long tongue in Ben's mouth; he gags and coughs and appears to suffocate. Photos show sexual assault on a woman. Man electrocutes himself.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Newlyweds kiss and embrace passionately, then the wife suggests they "get this thing consummated," though nothing is shown. Some bra-and-panties shots of women -- one straddling a man, another posing for pictures. Ghost climbs into bed with Ben and pulls her dress over her head, showing her back, which is decomposed and gross.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Sex, Romance & Nudity in your kid's entertainment guide.
One use of "f--k," plus other profanity, including "s--t" and "goddammit."
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.
Products & Purchases
Mac laptops; neon signs in Tokyo show various brand names.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Characters drink champagne, wine, beer. Men put date-rape drug in a woman's drink.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Drinking, Drugs & Smoking in your kid's entertainment guide.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this horror movie includes some graphic violence, including the bloody effects of a ghost's assaults on victims. There's also a jarring car accident; a leap from a balcony that has a hard, bloody ending on the sidewalk; and a camera eyepiece that pierces a character's eye. The ghost appears repeatedly in shadows and scares people. A sexual assault appears in photos and a flashback scene. The movie also includes some sexual imagery, showing women in bras and panties, as well as naked backs. There's some language and drinking, and a scene shows men agreeing to put a date-rape drug in a woman's wine. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails .
Where to Watch
Videos and photos.
- Parents say (1)
- Kids say (9)
Based on 1 parent review
Just plain bad
What's the story.
Bad things always seem to happen to unsuspecting blonde girls when they head East in remakes of Asian Extreme horror movies. SHUTTER -- a remake of a 2004 Thai movie -- is no exception, focusing on the haunting of Jane ( Rachael Taylor ) by a young Japanese woman's ghost. At first Jane thinks she killed Megumi (Megumi Okina) when she hit her with a car, but she can't convince her photographer husband, Ben ( Joshua Jackson ), that the accident even happened. It's a rough start to their honeymoon in Tokyo; soon Jane -- a plucky American feeling alienated in the city's crowded streets and neon signage -- starts investigating on her own. And when white blurs start appearing in Ben's photos, Jane researches "spirit photos," which an expert tells her show "strong emotions making themselves heard."
Is It Any Good?
Shifting the location to Tokyo and setting Caucasian stars against a Japanese ghost (the original features all Thai characters) changes the movie's haunting dynamic. On one level it's yet another instance of a white woman stalked by a vengeful Asian ghost. But on another, as Jane comes to understand the reasons for Megumi's anger, the women realize a shared grievance premised on gender imbalance and sexual abuses. It's hardly revolutionary for a scary movie to have a Caucasian woman wandering frightened through Tokyo, harassed by some supernatural phenomenon. But Shutter is almost perversely upfront in connecting privileged, self-justifying Caucasian men with the problem at its core.
And yet, despite this potential complexity, the movie lapses repeatedly into tired conventions. The "scares" are bloody but not very clever, the plot increasingly silly. In part this is a function of lapses in the script, as explanatory scenes pop up in strange places and a voiceover fills in for scenes missing altogether. Jane's plucky resilience makes her sympathetic, and when at last she literally leaves the movie before its end, you admire her sudden good judgment and wish her well.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about how this movie is similar to and different from other horror films based on Asian originals. What do these movies tend to have in common? What makes this one different? Families can also discuss how the movie uses both technology and legends to create suspense.
- In theaters : March 21, 2008
- On DVD or streaming : July 14, 2008
- Cast : Joshua Jackson , Megumi Okina , Rachael Taylor
- Director : Masayuki Ochiai
- Studio : Twentieth Century Fox
- Genre : Horror
- Run time : 85 minutes
- MPAA rating : PG-13
- MPAA explanation : terror, disturbing images, sexual content and language.
- Last updated : June 20, 2023
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
Suggest an Update
Our editors recommend.
Lost in Translation
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.
The latest remake of an asian horror film comes through with a few new tricks..
3.5 out of 5 Stars, 7/10 Score
In This Article
More Reviews by Laura Burrows
- Show Spoilers
- Night Vision
- Sticky Header
- Highlight Links
Follow TV Tropes
Film / Shutter
Shutter is a 2004 Thai horror film by Banjong Pisanthanakun and Parkpoom Wongpoom. It focuses a on young couple, Tun and Jane, who, after being involved in a hit-and-run accident, find themselves menaced by the ghost of a young woman named Natre, most prominently in mysterious and ghostly images seen in photographer Tun's developed pictures. As Tun's circle of friends start to kill themselves one by one, it soon becomes clear that there is a lot more to these images and hauntings than meets the eye - and Tun himself is hiding many dark secrets...
This film contains examples of:
- Adaptational Villainy : Ben in the 2008 remake is this to Tun as he manages to be even worse , having planned everything that happened, even being the one to drug his girlfriend and was present from beginning to end when his friends assaulted her, trying to justify it by saying it was the only thing he could to drive her away when she wouldn't listen to him trying to dump her. As such, his fate feels much more karmic, even compared to Tun, who also deserved it.
- Anti-Villain : Natre definitely qualifies as this, as she only goes after the people who were involved in her rape. She never harms Jane or goes after her, and it's eventually revealed that Natre has been trying to warn her of Tun's true nature.
- Asshole Victim : All of Tun's friends, especially Tonn.
- Big Bad : As it turns out, Tun allowed his friends to rape Natre, gave them photos they could use to blackmail her, and spurned her into suicide. Natre's ghost is in the film to punish him and reveal the truth to Jane.
- Blood from the Mouth : Jane in one of Tun's nightmares. Complete with teeth .
- Broken Pedestal : Tun ends up being one for Jane near the end, who breaks up with him in disgust on how his deplorable past actions led to them being currently haunted.
- Camera Fiend : Tun, obviously.
- Chekhov's Gun : The Polaroid camera.
- Disgusting Public Toilet : Tun visits one, although it's considerably less disgusting than most examples.
- Downer Ending : Tun is left in a catatonic state with heavily implied brain damage after being badly injured, with Natre still sitting on his shoulders. Giving his role in what happened to Natre, however, one could say it counts as karma as it was with the deaths of Tun's friends. The one upside is that Jane is alive and free of the hauntings, albeit emotionally and mentally scarred from the ordeal.
- Driven to Suicide : Natre. Also, Tun's friends all throw themselves off of buildings, although it is strongly implied that they are being influenced by Natre at the time. Tun later throws himself out of his apartment window (he survives, but with severe injuries), although whether this is accidental or a deliberate suicide attempt is up for debate.
- Eye Scream : How Megumi's ghost kills Adam in the American film.
- Face-Revealing Turn : In a nightmare of Tun's, he is walking towards who he believes to be Jane. Suddenly, she starts coughing up blood, and then she turns around to reveal that she is Jane, who then starts spitting out her own teeth as well.
- A Fate Worse Than Death : The ending, for Tun, although he deserves it.
- Foreign Remake : The Tamil and US remakes.
- Tun refusing to let Jane out of the car and demanding they drive away after they seemingly run over a woman is the first sign as to what kind of person he really is.
- Four Is Death : There is a scene in which Tun is running down several flights of stairs to escape Natre. However, no matter which floor he stops at, it is always "Level 4".
- Ghostly Goals : Natre is a blend of both types. She longs to both exact revenge on Tun (as well as his friends) and to be with him forever, but also provides Jane with clues as to what happened to her.
- Jump Scare : Many and varied.
- Karmic Death : All of Tun's friends suffer this.
- Matchlight Danger Revelation : The scene in the pitch-black room with the flashing camera.
- Mirror Scare
- Mummies at the Dinner Table : Natre's mother still keeps her daughter's decomposing corpse in her (Natre's) bed. She is eventually cremated, with everyone hoping that this act will put her spirit at peace. It doesn't.
- Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping : Australian actress Rachael Taylor, who plays Jane in the American remake, loses her American accent in a couple of scenes, including the one where she dumps Ben after finding out what really drove Megumi to kill herself.
- Peek-a-Boo Corpse : It's pretty easy to see coming, but it still manages to be extremely jarring.
- Pet the Dog : For some strange reason, Natre doesn't go after Jane, who by the end, realizes Natre has been trying to warn her about Tun. This is all most likely out of the fact Jane is innocent and was unaware of Tun's betrayal towards his former lover.
- Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil : Tun's friends are revealed to have sexually assaulted Natre, and their deaths are karmic.
- The Reveal : This film contains several, all centering around Natre. As it turns out, Natre was not killed in the hit-and-run accident - she had been dead a long time prior to that. She had, in fact, committed suicide. So, why is she seeking revenge, if she wasn't killed in a hit-and-run? Well, it turns out that Tun went to college with her, and started dating her. Natre fell deeply in love with him, but Tun kept their relationship a secret, even from his closest friends, due to everyone else finding the quiet, unassuming Natre to be "weird". He didn't love her, although he did care about her a lot. However, Natre fell into a deep depression and became suicidal, and shortly after that, Tun dumped her. Then, towards the end of the film, the entire truth is revealed: Natre became depressed and eventually killed herself because of Tun's friends holding her down and raping her one night. To add insult to injury, when Tun walked in on them, instead of helping her, chose to protect his friends instead by providing photos of Natre to his friends so that they could use them against her. Then, near the very end of the film, the reasons for Tun's neck ache and increased weight are revealed: Natre's spirit has been sitting on his shoulders the whole time, something which is only revealed when he takes a picture of himself .
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge : What Natre is doing to Tun and his friends.
- Room Full of Crazy : In the American version. When it's revealed that Ritsuo's been publishing fake Spooky Photographs , he shows Jane a room full of real ones.
- The nature show featuring praying mantises in the act of mating and sexual cannibalism acts as this, especially when one factors in the ending.
- Self-Harm : Natre cuts her wrists in Tun's darkroom prior to taking an overdose of pills and throwing herself off a roof.
- Shrinking Violet : Natre, in life.
- Spooky Photographs : The first type, all the way.
- Stringy-Haired Ghost Girl : Natre.
- Toilet Humor : The scene where Tun accidentally walks in on someone in a public toilet stall.
- Twist Ending : Just when it seems like she and Tun are free from the hauntings, Jane discovers that Tun had helped his friends cover up their rape of Natre, realizing she had been targeting Tun for revenge.
- Unreliable Narrator : Tun in his earlier flashbacks.
- What the Hell, Hero? : Jane does this to Tun towards the end, when she discovers just what happened to make Natre so deeply vengeful.
- Turned up a notch in the U.S. remake, where nothing happens on the night after Megumi's funeral and Ben and Jane return to New York thinking it's all over.
- Raging Phoenix
- Doctor Sleep
- Ghost Fiction
- Silent Tongue
- Films of 2000�2004
- The Shining
- Psychological Horror
- The Silence of the Lambs
- Horror Films
- Action Adventure
- Crime & Punishment
- Professional Wrestling
- Speculative Fiction
- Sports Story
- Animation (Western)
- Music And Sound Effects
- Print Media
- Sequential Art
- Tabletop Games
- Applied Phlebotinum
- Characters As Device
- Narrative Devices
- British Telly
- The Contributors
- Creator Speak
- Derivative Works
- Laws And Formulas
- Show Business
- Split Personality
- Truth And Lies
- Truth In Television
- Fate And Prophecy
- Edit Reasons
- Isolated Pages
- Images List
- Recent Videos
- Crowner Activity
- Un-typed Pages
- Recent Page Type Changes
- Trope Entry
- Character Sheet
- Playing With
- Creating New Redirects
- Cross Wicking
- Tips for Editing
- Text Formatting Rules
- Handling Spoilers
- Trope Repair Shop
- Image Pickin'
- About / FAQ
- Submit News
- Upcoming Horror
- Marketing Macabre
Horror News | HNN Official Site | Horror Movies,Trailers, Reviews
Film review: shutter (2004).
Adrian Halen 11/12/2016 Asian Reviews
A young photographer and his girlfriend discover mysterious shadows in their photographs after a tragic accident. They soon learn that you can not escape your past.
Within the smattering of Asian horror releases that arrived like a tidal wave of fear, “ Shutter” (2004 ) was one of ones that carried a well known legacy of being frightful. Its later 2008 US version entirely missed its mark and failed to win over fans even with the inclusion of Joshua Jackson and Rachael Taylor. “ Shutter ” provides a perfect example of why some films “ should” be left in the state that they arrive….effective, that is.
With a strong ghost story premise to back it up, the film takes on the subject of spirit photography and the enigmatic appearance of spectral images caught within the unassuming camera eye. “Shutter” begins as a young photographer and his girlfriend accidentally run into a young girl who is crossing the street one evening. Out of fear, they pull a “hit and run” leaving the body behind for another to discover. Though unjust acts have a way of returning out of pure bad karma. Tun, who is actively pursuing his photography studies begins to notice the strange appearance of a ghost images within his pictures. Some merely arrive with smeared wisps while others begin to capture a face. The face we learn is that of a returning spirit who was left behind.
Though this is only the beginning of this well written storyline. We learn much more about the nature of Natre and her relationship with Tun. Tun and his girlfriend Jane become haunted by the reoccurring spirit of the deceased Natre. Natre not only infects their photos but starts to materialize in odd places. As this progresses, we learn of Tun’s group of friends who are also ending up dead from suicidal attempts. Tun, who thought his past was left behind has to face his fears and his wrong doings now that a spirit has returned to remind him. All the while Tun and Jane are on a mission to get the full scope of what ever happened to Natre leading to some deadly realizations.
The movie visits the subject of spirit photography more than once, which to me suggests a strong interest in the whole field by the writers of the film. Thru investigation, we learn a bit about the market and how some images are faked for magazine sales. Though in the interest of respecting the unfaked ones, we also get a dose of realism on the matters.
What is unique here is the way they really say alot about the culture and understanding of death from the Asian point of view. It also reaffirms the nature of wrongful deaths and the retribution of scorned spirits. And speaking of scorned spirits….Shutter proves to be one of the most effective in this realm next to “Ju-on”. The appearance and materialism of Natre as a ghost is so well placed at times, it leaves a haunting residue after watching. The trend is kept pretty close to the rest of the white-faced brat pack, though its timing and execution that makes this a scary and successful addition to the roster.
Directors Banjong Pisanthanakun and Parkpoom Wongpoom demonstrate a deep undertaking of this concept. The final act with its paradoxal ending is so unique that is simply works to the understanding of the viewers by the time we finally get to it. “Shutter” has left a mark among the greats of Asian horror as not only a great story, but a scary one at that. Upon reviewing, I had seen this film a few years ago but didn’t remember enough to pull together my perspective. Even upon second viewing the jump scenes that I viewed before were still as effective and still well placed. In other words, I was re-startled which suggests a solid attempt at creating a film that lasts. “Shutter” remains a favorite ghost story and has been entered into my top scary films of all time. Upon writing this I couldn’t find any listed credits for the character of Natre. I suppose this was purposely done to keep her as an enigma.
Tags Ananda Everingham Natthaweeranuch Thongmee Panitan Mavichak Shutter Titikarn Tongprasearth Unnop Chanpaibool
Scariest Asian Ghost Movies of All Time
Top Recommended Films You should Never Watch Alone!
Film Review: The Coffin (2008)
Top 20 Scariest Movies of All Time – Part 2
Film Review: Shutter (2008)
The Asian Horror Remake Formula
It has been demystified, the actress of Natre was portrayed by Achita Sikamana.
Leave a Reply Cancel reply
Your email address will not be published.
Shutter (I) (2008)
Full cast & crew.
Writing credits ( wga ) , cast (in credits order) complete, awaiting verification , produced by , music by , cinematography by , editing by , casting by , production design by , art direction by , set decoration by , makeup department , production management , second unit director or assistant director , art department , sound department , special effects by , visual effects by , stunts , camera and electrical department , casting department , costume and wardrobe department , editorial department , location management , music department , script and continuity department , transportation department , additional crew .
Release Dates | Official Sites | Company Credits | Filming & Production | Technical Specs
Contribute to This Page
- Full Cast and Crew
- Release Dates
- Official Sites
- Company Credits
- Filming & Production
- Technical Specs
- Plot Summary
- Plot Keywords
- Parents Guide
Did You Know?
- Crazy Credits
- Alternate Versions
Photo & Video
- Photo Gallery
- Trailers and Videos
- User Reviews
- User Ratings
- External Reviews
- Metacritic Reviews
- External Sites
Related lists from IMDb users
- Share Content on Facebook
- Share Content on LinkedIn
- Share Content on Flipboard
- Share Content on Reddit
- Share Content via Email
Four years ago, the movie "Shutter" scared the wits out of Thai audiences and became a runaway box office success. Now the ghost story with a twist has been remade in very United Nations fashion, shot in Tokyo by a Japanese director working with Canadian, Australian, American and Korean actors.
The language barrier posed a few problems from the get-go for the international crew -- director Masayuki Ochiai doesn't speak English. There were also the challenges of altering cultural elements of the story for a Western audience and shooting on location in crowded Tokyo. The cast also faced very real and often daunting adjustments in adapting to a foreign culture and customs during the three-and-a-half month shoot in spring 2007.
"Shutter" follows a couple who flee a hit-and-run accident and are then haunted by the victim, who shows up in their developed photos and is revealed to have a past connection to the young man. Joshua Jackson ("Dawson's Creek"), a native of Vancouver, British Columbia, plays photographer Ben, who's newly married to Jane (Australian Rachael Taylor of " Transformers "). The couple travel to Japan when he's hired to shoot a fashion layout there.
The remake is told from the female protagonist's point of view instead of the male's and relocated from New York City to Tokyo to heighten Jane's sense of unfamiliarity and isolation. The film delves into the world of spirit photography , a familiar phenomenon in Asia that also has believers in America. HowStuffWorks tracked down an expert in the field to help explain how it works, and his insights -- in addition to interviews with the lead actors and producer Taka Ichise --will give you a better understanding of the film.
How spirit photography works, filming "shutter" the movie in japan, shooting "shutter" on location in tokyo.
"There are quite a few depictions in the original Thai film that have been influenced by the style of Japanese horror films," says producer Taka Ichise. "One of my biggest concerns was if we tried to remake the film by following the original faithfully, it would basically turn out to be a parody of Japanese horror films." Ichise tapped screenwriter Luke Dawson to pen the new version of "Shutter," but one particular plot point gave him concern.
"The ghost in 'Shutter' [had to] have its own will," he says. "I am confident that we were able to depict the ghost as being scary, even though it had its own sense of will. The grand sense of the story is the same as the original, but we tried to be creative and make the characters more empathetic."
"It's about death and revenge and secrets and betrayal and all those really potent human dramas," says lead actress Rachael Taylor, a big fan of the original movie. "It was one of the main reasons I wanted to make this movie. Our version is more of a reinterpretation than a remake. We shift the perspective from the male to the female. She's a very active and strong female character trying to figure out and interpret these supernatural events that are happening to her."
It was important to Taylor to establish the relationship between Jane and Ben at the outset "to make sure that there was a really tangible chemistry and that we looked like a young newlywed couple in love -- if we didn't have that, no one would really buy the degradation of the relationship. They're in this idyllic, blissfully married state at the beginning of the movie and then it all goes awry."
For lead actor Joshua Jackson, the main change in the new "Shutter" is cultural. "The original was a Thai movie with Thai actors," he says. "They already had a cultural reference point when the spirit photography came into it. By introducing Westerners, you have to bring the characters into that mythology."
"What I like about this film is we don't ask the audience to be on board with the realm of the supernatural straight away," Taylor says. "We ask them to discover it with us."
Spirit photography , in which ghostly figures appear in photographic images , dates back to the 1860s, when William H. Mumler produced and marketed pictures like the famous one of presidential widow Mary Todd Lincoln and a supposedly spectral image of her deceased husband. Photographs by Mumler and others were displayed in 2005 in an exhibition at New York 's Metropolitan Museum of Art, which director Ochiai visited for inspiration.
In spirit photography, the ghostly image hovers behind the subject -- ethereal but distinct. How does it get there?
"A camera can pick up something that doesn't necessarily belong there and that can't be seen with the naked eye ," says Dale D. Kaczmarek, author of "A Field Guide to Spirit Photography" and the "Windy City Ghosts" series. Kaczmarek is a lecturer and expert in the field who's been analyzing photographs for evidence of supernatural phenomena for the better part of 25 years.
Any type of camera -- including digital and video -- can capture spirit images, which might or might not look human. According to Kaczmarek, the spirit might manifest as "a streak of light, a strange light or fog." Authentic spirit photographs, he says, "don't fall into the category of easily explained."
Kaczmarek receives several photo submissions a day on his Web site, ghostresearch.org, and says he can find a natural explanation for 70 to 80 percent of them: bad film, double exposure, dust, reflections, glare, flash , fog, smoke or a person's breath. He makes his diagnosis using information about the camera, film, weather and other circumstances.
And what of intentional hoaxes? "Doctoring is very easy these days with Photoshop and computerized images," Kaczmarek says. He says he's received only around a dozen such images, though. "There are telltale signs: If the person [in the photo] is not centered, it's usually an indication that they're going to try to insert something."
Kaczmarek bases his expertise on physical evidence and on-location investigations. He works with a videographer, a technical operator (who mans a Tri-Field meter, or electromagnetic field detector ) and occasionally a psychic. The EMF device picks up deviations in the electromagnetic field . "The needle will spike to indicate there's a change in the electromagnetic field, indicating the presence of a ghost ," Kaczmarek explains.
Kaczmarek also lectures about spirit photography and leads workshops on how to capture spectral images on film. To start, he suggests exploring reportedly haunted locations. Bringing along a psychic, or a pet, may help. "Dogs and cats will alert you to the fact that they feel uncomfortable in a certain location," he says.
While he has not seen "Shutter," Kaczmarek gives thumbs up to portrayals of ghostly phenomena in films like "The Others," "Ghost," "The Sixth Sense," "White Noise," and even the comic " Ghostbusters ." "['Ghostbusters'] showed the high-tech equipment, and that ghosts have a humorous side," says Kazmarek, whose Web site plays the movie's theme song. "They're not always there to frighten."
Producer Taka Ichise, considered the "Horror King" of Japan for his work on the original versions of "The Grudge"/"Grudge 2," "Dark Water" and "The Ring," was familiar with spirit photography long before "Shutter."
"How ghostly images appear in spirit photographs serves as a useful reference of the way Japanese horror films depicts ghosts," he says. "I have researched spirit photography for quite some time, even before this project began. I’ve seen spirit photographs taken by my friends, so I believe in them."
Rachael Taylor became more open to spirit photography during filming. "There are photographs that have inexplicable images on them," she says. "Whether or not you want to consider them supernatural images is up to you, but there are photographs that you can’t explain."
Joshua Jackson remains a skeptic but doesn’t entirely dismiss the notion. "I’ve never had a ghost moment, but I don’t deny that it’s possible," he says.
Joshua Jackson and Rachael Taylor joined cast members John Hensley ("Nip/Tuck"), David Denman ("The Office") and Korean-born James Kyson Lee (" Heroes ") in Tokyo for what would be a working and living experience completely different from any they'd had before.
"I've shot in a lot of foreign countries and it always presents little challenges, but I've never been in a culture that's so foreign to my own," Jackson says. "The culture is so fundamentally different. Just the basic level of human interaction is based upon different ideals and ideas."
That was complicated by the fact that the foreigners had to communicate with director Ochiai via an interpreter, Chiho Asada. Fortunately, says Jackson, "she was a phenomenal translator. She had lived in the States and not only could translate the words but the context."
Jackson also had to learn several passages in Japanese (Ben is supposed to be fluent, having lived there in the past). "They cut out a lot of the Japanese that I speak in the American version," he says. "There's much more of it in the Japanese version of the movie."
For Taylor, who welcomed the challenge of using an American accent in "Shutter," it was also challenging to work with someone who doesn't speak English. "That dilutes the relationship you have with a director," she says. "But at the same time it was fascinating to me the way I could communicate with him in ways that were nonverbal. We really had an understanding by the end of the movie."
Taylor found Tokyo's architecture, fashion and art inspiring, but she did experience some of the same difficulties as Jane did. "It was a very isolating experience for a Westerner," she says, noting that she felt invisible, "like I wasn't there. But it worked for the movie because that's kind of the character's journey as well."
Shooting in Tokyo had its pluses and minuses, according to producer Taka Ichise. "The shooting costs in Tokyo are relatively inexpensive," he says. "Since there is no union in the Japanese film industry, there are no rules and regulations for working hours for the cast and crew. And the crew members are all hard workers and have much passion." There were logistical issues, though. There aren't many soundstages in the area, and movie productions aren't allowed to block the streets, which made it difficult to set up the cast's trailers.
The production found a home at the Toho Company studios, where "Godzilla," "Mothra" and many of Akira Kurosawa's films were shot. Other locations included an abandoned hospital and empty old houses that provided suitably unsettling environments. "We were shooting in one apartment," remembers Rachael Taylor," and [Ochiai] wouldn't turn the lights on between takes. It was scary in there, really dark, and everyone was bumping into each other. He's great with building tension -- he understands what creepy is."
Another key location was Mount Fuji, site of the pivotal car accident at the beginning of the film. The sequence was shot at 3 a.m. on a cold night, and the weather -- fog on the first day and snow on the second -- didn't exactly cooperate. The snowfall was a first for Taylor, who notes that the white stuff wasn't in the script. "But it really came down, so we had to use it, and I'm so glad," she says. "It was effective. So thank you, Mother Nature."
A few sequences required the actors to work with ghost stand-ins that would be replaced by computer images in postproduction. 'It's kind of fun, like being 6 years old and playing make-believe -- you just have to use your imagination and go with it," says Taylor.
But on the whole, the use of CGI was relatively small. "I believe there were 90 [effects] shots," says Ichise. "Most of them were used to enhance depictions of the ghosts , to add a sense of terror to the shots in the film."
While the horror aspect is a major part of "Shutter," Taylor stresses that it wouldn't work without a good story. "Even though there's the supernatural element to it, the rest of the drama is human drama," she says, "[It's a] relationship drama that asks the question 'How well do you really know this person?'"
- Rachael Taylor will play a viticulturist in "Bottle Shock," opposite Alan Rickman, Bill Pullman, Chris Pine and Freddy Rodriguez. The movie is about the start of the Napa Valley wine industry in the 1970s.
- Joshua Jackson stars in "Fringe," a Fox pilot from J.J. Abrams about an FBI agent (Anna Torv) who works with scientists to solve unexplained phenomena. "It’s the science part of science fiction ," says Jackson, whose character is "a smart man who makes the worst decisions you can imagine." The series "comes at it from the perspective that there’s a scientific explanation but there’s so much more happening in our physical world than what we’re seeing.”
- Taka Ichise is producing the Japanese-language adventure "Goemon," directed by Kazuaki Kiriya and set for release in January 2009.
Lots More Information
Related howstuffworks articles.
- How Ghosts Work
- How Ghost Busters Work
- Has science explained life after death?
- Can animals predict death?
- How Urban Legends Work
- How ESP Works
- How Cameras Work
- How Camcorders Work
- Inside "10,000 BC"
- Inside "The Bank Job"
- Inside "Heroes"
More Great Links
- Ghost Research
- Taka Ichise responded to e-mailed interview questions Feb. 28, 2008
- Dale D. Kaczmarek interviewed March 5, 2008
- Rachael Taylor and Joshua Jackson interviewed March 7, 2008
Please copy/paste the following text to properly cite this HowStuffWorks.com article:
- Skip to primary navigation
- Skip to main content
- Skip to primary sidebar
Horror Movie Talk
A Horror Movie Podcast
Want to Support the Show? Spend on Amazon Become a Patron
Shutter (2004) Review with Dustin Goebel
By Bryce Hanson on August 23, 2023 0
Podcast: Play in new window | Download ()
Subscribe: Google Podcasts | Spotify | Amazon Music | Pandora | iHeartRadio | Podchaser | TuneIn | Deezer | RSS | More
Does this Shutter make you shudder? I’ll see myself out…
After a night out with friends, a photographer named Tun and his girlfriend Jane are driving home when they accidentally hit a woman in the street. Instead of helping her, Tun convinces Jane to run to avoid responsibility. In the days after Tun starts to notice strange artifacts in his photos. They soon realize that this isn’t regular photography, its…G-G-G-Ghost photograph. As the photo ghost continues to haunt them, they try to unravel the mystery behind why she is haunting them.
Review of Shutter (2004)
This is a pretty ok movie. It’s pretty run of the mill formula of “here’s a paranormal phenomena thats talked about on Discovery channel, lets wrap a movie around it.” It loses points for relying way too much on ghost pikaboo and disorientating fakeouts. I think they would have done better trying to scare the audience with jumpscares, and focused on the drama/mystery more.
The repetition of jump scares and creepy photos throughout the second act are only interrupted by confusing non-sequiter appearances of one of Tun’s friends, Tonn, asking desperately for photographs before his untimely death. It all makes sense in the end, but the pacing and editing were off so it feels like the first half of the movie crashed into a second movie halfway through.
The story behind the ghost is the most compelling part of the movie, and unfortunately they leave most of that until the third act.
Overall it was an interesting story with pacing issues, but at an hour and thirty minute runtime, it never really outstayed its welcome.
About Bryce Hanson
I'm a big fan of horror movies because it's rare that they aren't interesting. Whether it is a straight to VOD or the latest theatrical release, there is always something to talk about. I also like to sing, wax philosophical about mythology and religion, contemplate the void, and spend time with my family. I am usually up in my head about something, so apologies if I'm looking off into the middle distance. Along with David, I am a co-founder of Horror Movie Talk.
If you want to know more about my taste in horror films, checkout my about page or listen to episode 14: "The Horrific Beginnings of Horror Movie Talk"
Leave a reply cancel reply.
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
FINAL CALL to enter the Kairos Prize® script writing competition! | Enter Now >>
"A Ghost from the Past"
What You Need To Know:
(OOO, FeFe, APAP, Pa, FR, C, B, LL, VVV, S, N, A, D, MM) Very strong occult, spiritualist worldview about a revenge-minded ghost, with strong feminist elements and anti-American content where the three American men in the story turn out to be really bad and deceitful people, plus some pagan superstition about spirits, a Buddhist monk appears at a funeral, and light Christian, biblical content about guilt and sin which, however, turns away from ideas of forgiveness and redemption; two obscenities (including one “f” word), four strong profanities and six or seven light profanities; some very strong, often scary violence, including car hits woman suddenly walking in road, car crash leaves two people unconscious, ghost attacks people, images of dead bodies, suicide, two or three pools of blood, ghost attacks man holding camera and viewers see his empty eye socket bloodied after he drops camera, image of dead body being cremated, and man starts to shock himself with camera equipment; implied married sex, implied fornication in some flashbacks, implied rape, and passionate kissing in bed; bare back of woman shown in bed with husband, female model in bra and panties strikes suggestive poses before photographer, another woman shown in panties; alcohol use; smoking and men drug woman’s drink so they can shoot compromising photos; and, lying, deceit, guilty man gets angry at wife, and revenge.
Movies are like a public dream. Their dream images take place in the dark, which promotes a strong unconscious connection between the viewer and the characters on the screen, as dream images do for the dreamer.
As public dreams, movies have a strong metaphorical level that lends itself to more symbolic, figurative interpretations. Thus, it’s a mistake to consume or interpret a movie solely on a concrete level that may extend the movie’s images too far into what is called “the real world,” to the point of possibly distorting its metaphors or, even worse, distorting the creator’s message.
The new horror movie SHUTTER is a good example of cinema’s metaphorical power. A ghost story, SHUTTER has a deep metaphorical, or symbolic, meaning that combines with the movie’s messages, including its moral ones. And, this is indeed a very moralistic horror movie, from a certain point of view.
In the story, a young couple, Ben and Jane, get married in New York City. They have to fly immediately to Japan, however, where they only have two days’ worth of honeymooning before Ben starts his high-class fashion photography job in Tokyo.
While driving at night to a remote cabin near Mt. Fuji, Jane runs into a thin woman who suddenly appears in the road. The car crashes, causing Jane and Ben to lose consciousness. When they awake, neither they nor the police whom they call on their cell phone can find the woman’s body. At the cabin, however, some ghostly images appear on their honeymoon photos.
In Tokyo, Jane and Ben take more photos that contain bizarre ghostly images. Moreover, they start seeing the ghost of the woman in the road. The editor of a spiritualist magazine tells Jane that these are “spirit photos,” a remnant of some powerful emotions associated with this woman. Jane discovers that the woman was her husband’s former girlfriend when he previously worked in Tokyo, and the ghost’s appearances turn deadly.
The ghost woman in this movie is not just a real ghost; she’s also a ghost from Ben’s past that is hurting him psychologically and endangering his marriage. SHUTTER mines this metaphorical level deeply in an impressive manner. Theologically speaking, the ghost from Ben’s past is also a symbol of a great sin that Ben committed before he met Jane. Thus, SHUTTER has strong theological implications as well as the psychological ones just cited.
That’s as far as the movie goes, however. Hence, there is no salvation in the movie for Ben or his marriage. And, there is no possible forgiveness or redemption for Ben’s sin. Instead, the movie tells viewers that the woman’s ghost is actually a warning for Jane about Ben’s secret past, which reveals the evil sexism within his character. It is at this point that the movie’s dream-like metaphors turn away from the Bible and Christianity and turn toward the occultism of spiritualism and a strong proto-feminism that brooks no possibility of redemption for the masculine psyche (unless, of course, the masculine psyche is embodied by a female or, even better yet according to some radical feminists and Marxists, a lesbian). People of faith and values should shun such an abhorrent worldview because it is false, immoral and anti-God. God condemns it in the Bible, and those who follow Jesus must avoid it.
We are a crowdfunded organization, supported by people like you. These are some of the reasons why our supporters choose to give.
"The comprehensive movie reviews. It takes the guesswork out if movie viewing. " - Brenda
You can make a difference with as little as $7. It takes only a moment. If you can, consider supporting our ministry with a monthly gift. Thank you.
Movieguide® is a 501c3 and all donations are tax-deductible.
A New Way To Experience Family Night
- A family devotional that combines your favorite movies with Gospel truths!
- An exciting and fun way to grow spiritually and together as a family
- Download for FREE right now and transform your family movie nights
Enter your email to download your free devotion for families!
" * " indicates required fields
Friend's Email Address
Your Email Address
15 Seriously Scary Ghost Movies (And How To Watch Them)
Whether or not you believe in ghosts, few would deny that the mere idea of being in a haunted house is unsettling. For that reason, there are many great horror movies based on the premise of sharing a home or any isolated area with a deceased individual’s spectral remains, yet some are more frightening than others. If you are looking for a truly terrifying supernatural movie night, these scary ghost movies should do the trick.
The Shining (1980)
While trying to finish a novel, a recovering alcoholic author ( Jack Nicholson ), his wife (Shelley Duvall) and young son (Danny Lloyd) become caretakers of a desolate Colorado hotel where a sinister presence threatens to tear them apart.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: While the author himself was not a fan of Stanley Kubrick’s adaptation of his 1977 novel , The Shining is considered to be among the best Stephen King movies — if not the best — for its unrelentingly eerie atmosphere and aimlessly unique depiction of hauntings.
Stream The Shining on Max . Rent or buy The Shining on Amazon .
The Changeling (1980)
A recently widowed music professor (Academy Award winner George C. Scott) becomes wrapped up in a disturbing mystery about his new home — a long-vacant mansion in Seattle — with guidance from the ghost haunting it.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: One of Martin Scorsese’s favorite horror movies is The Changeling , which is acclaimed as one of the best horror movies that address grief in a profound way in addition to its top-notch scares.
Stream The Changeling on Tubi . Stream The Changeling on Peacock . Stream The Changeling on Plex . Rent or buy The Changeling on Amazon .
A real estate agent (Craig T. Nelson) and his wife (JoBeth Williams) tries to rescue their youngest daughter (Heather O’Rourke) from the evil spirits that have invaded their home and abducted her into their realm.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: Hailing from producer Steven Spielberg and director Tobe Hooper, Poltergeist is an essential haunted house movie — not just for its indelibly frightening elements, but also for its emotionally grounded depiction of parents longing to find their missing child.
Stream Poltergeist on Max . Rent or buy Poltergeist on Amazon .
The Sixth Sense (1999)
A child psychologist (Bruce Willis) with his own dark past tries to help a young boy (Haley Joel Osment) come to terms with his disturbing gift.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: Arguably M. Night Shyamalan’s best movie , the clever and frightening classic The Sixth Sense has a unique set of rules about the afterlife which, once you see the killer twist ending , you’ll never think of the same way again.
Rent or buy The Sixth Sense on Amazon .
Stir Of Echoes (1999)
After agreeing to be hypnotized by his sister-in-law at a party just for a laugh, it quickly proves to be no laughing matter for the man (Kevin Bacon) as he begins to see visions of a girl who is dead.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: Because it was released not long after The Sixth Sense and bore similar themes of ESP and paranormal activity, writer and director David Koepp’s intense adaptation of Richard Matheson’s novel Stir of Echoes did not get the attention it deserved, and rarely has since then.
Stream Stir Of Echoes on Tubi . Stream Stir Of Echoes on Plex . Stream Stir Of Echoes on Freevee through Amazon .
Session 9 (2001)
Relations between the somewhat normally close-knit crew of an asbestos removal company grow sour as they race to complete a job at an abandoned mental hospital with a dark past that slowly comes to light.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: From director Brad Anderson — who also co-writes with star Stephen Gevedon — and also starring CSI: Miami star David Caruso, Session 9 is yet another unfairly overlooked horror movie with some really good scares and a chilling final act.
Rent or buy Session 9 on Amazon .
A grieving father who specializes in disproving supernatural phenomena (John Cusack) puts the legend of an hotel room with a supposedly deadly curse to the test, only to find a reason to believe.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: From director Mikael Håfström, 1408 is another haunted hotel story from author Stephen King that mostly plays out like a spooky one-man show, while also starring Cusack’s future Cell co-star, Samuel L. Jackson .
Rent or buy 1408 on Amazon .
The Orphanage (2007)
During a visit to the foster home where she grew up, a woman (Belén Rueda) and her husband (Fernando Cayo) accidentally lose their young son (Roger Príncep) and turn to unusual measures in hopes of finding him.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: From producer Guillermo del Toro and writer and director J.A. Bayona, the Spanish-language thriller The Orphanage is already spine-tingling as a missing child story, but its ghostly elements make for an unforgettable frightening experience.
Rent or buy The Orphanage on Amazon .
Lake Mungo (2008)
A family from Australia recalls in interviews the strange events that would begin to plague their home shortly after their teenage daughter drowned to death.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: From writer and director Joel Anderson, and one of the most unlikely After Dark Horror Fest entries, Lake Mungo is an overlooked supernatural drama that's so mysteriously compelling, delicately constructed, and convincingly acted, no one could fault you for assuming this faux documentary was real.
Stream Lake Mungo on Tubi . Stream Lake Mungo on Plex . Rent or buy Lake Mungo on Amazon .
Grave Encounters (2011)
The typically skeptical crew of a docuseries that explores notorious sightings of alleged hauntings find the irrefutable evidence they never thought they would after locking themselves in an empty insane asylum.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: Part satire of paranormal investigation reality series like Ghost Adventures , and another part relentless nightmare fuel, Grave Encounters is another relatively underrated found footage thriller featuring some of the most unforgivably frightening supernatural entities you could imagine.
Stream Grave Encounters on Freevee through Amazon . Stream Grave Encounters on Tubi . Stream Grave Encounters on Plex .
A teacher (Patrick Wilson), his wife ( Rose Byrne ) and their children begin to suffer from very strange and disturbing circumstances after their eldest son (Ty Simpkins) mysteriously falls into a coma.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: Writer Leigh Whannell and director James Wan of Saw fame already turned the haunted house genre on its head with the unique concept of Insidious , but rarely had a film of this kind been so visually arresting and indelibly frightening at this time either.
Stream Insidious on Max . Rent or buy Insidious on Amazon .
The Pact (2012)
After her sister goes missing not long after the death of their mother, a woman (Caity Lotz) begins to suspect that the secret behind her disappearance is tied to the unexplainable events she begins to experience in her childhood home.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: If you have never seen or heard of writer and director Nicholas McCarthy’s The Pact , I highly recommend it to people who enjoy engrossing mystery stories that do not hold back on high-stakes frights.
Stream The Pact on Tubi . Rent or buy The Pact on Amazon .
The Woman In Black (2012)
A widowed legal practitioner (Daniel Radcliffe) is shocked to learn that an abandoned manor in a small London village is haunted by a vengeful spirit who struck fear in the locals.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: Based on the novel by Susan Hill, The Woman in Black is one of Daniel Radcliffe’s best movies outside of the Harry Potter franchise in the way it harkens back to a forgotten era of gothic tales of the unexplainable, but with haunting imagery for audiences of any generation to get spooked by
Stream The Woman In Black on Paramount+ . Rent or buy The Woman In Black on Amazon .
The Conjuring (2013)
A family calls upon the help of famed paranormal investigators Ed (Patrick Wilson) and Lorraine Warren (Vera Farmiga) to help rid their new Rhode Island home of the evil presence inhabiting it.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: While the more memorable antagonists in any of the Conjuring Universe movies are of the demonic sort, director James Wan’s original that started it all has its fair share of great and grandly creepy ghostly moments.
Stream The Conjuring on Max . Rent or buy The Conjuring on Amazon .
Ouija: Origin Of Evil (2016)
A mother of two (Annalise Basso and Lulu Wilson) who makes a living as a fake medium (Elizabeth Reaser) adds a new element to her performance that turns out to be much more real than she could have envisioned.
Why it is a seriously scary ghost movie: Some of the earliest proof of writer and director Mike Flanagan’s expertise in horror storytelling was the surprisingly taut and viscerally unsettling Ouija: Origin of Evil — a prequel to an almost universally reviled generic teen thriller from 2014.
Stream Ouija: Origin Of Evil on Netflix . Rent or buy Ouija: Origin Of Evil on Amazon .
If these ghost movies do not manage to scare you, we hope they at least warm your spirit as a horror fan.
Your Daily Blend of Entertainment News
Jason has been writing since he was able to pick up a washable marker, with which he wrote his debut illustrated children's story, later transitioning to a short-lived comic book series and (very) amateur filmmaking before finally settling on pursuing a career in writing about movies in lieu of making them. Look for his name in almost any article about Batman.
How To Watch Five Nights at Freddy's Online And Stream From Anywhere
Deliver Me Netflix TV Show: What We Know About The Book Adaptation
30+ '90s Network TV Shows That Ran For Multiple Seasons, Then Disappeared
By Jerrica Tisdale October 26, 2023
By Jason Wiese October 25, 2023
By Philip Sledge October 25, 2023
By Danielle Bruncati October 25, 2023
By Riley Utley October 24, 2023
By Alexandra Ramos October 24, 2023
By Mick Joest October 24, 2023
By Alice Marshall October 24, 2023
By Mike Reyes October 24, 2023
By Heidi Venable October 24, 2023
- 2 How To Watch Five Nights at Freddy's Online And Stream From Anywhere
- 3 After The Golden Bachelor’s Most Heartbreaking Elimination Yet, Fans Know Who They Want As The First Golden Bachelorette
- 4 Nathan Fillion Has Gone Full Mustache, And He Knows He Resembles Blue Bloods’ Tom Selleck
- 5 After Bradley Whitford Joined Mariska Hargitay In Law And Order: SVU Season 24, I Rewatched His Earlier Episode Playing A Totally Different Character
Hollywood loves a ghost movie. These are the best ones to watch this Halloween
A g-g-g- ghost!
That — spluttering and all — was the usual reaction to Casper, the Friendly Ghost. Ghosts scare people. Even if, like Casper in the old cartoons, they just want to be your friend.
Ghosts, as a matter of fact, often have more on their minds than just saying "boo!"
Sometimes, as in "Macbeth," "Julius Caesar," and "Hamlet," they come back to scold, warn, prod. Sometimes, as in "A Christmas Carol," they do interventions.
And sometimes — as in "Ghostbusters" — ghosts just wanna have fun.
At Halloween, our annual festival of fear, they'll always have a place of honor — if only because their costume is a gift to the lazy. White sheet, two holes, done. Coincidentally, ghosts are also among the simplest of Hollywood's special effects. Double exposure is as old as film itself.
Maybe that's why ghosts have haunted movie theaters for 120 years — ever since Georges Méliès made "The Apparition" in 1903. And Halloween is a great time to catch up with the best of them. Here are some of our favorites.
Never fear! There are over 100 scary Halloween things to do, read and see in North Jersey
With this caveat: Hollywood's ghosts, like all ghosts, have mixed motives. Not every ghost movie is meant to scare you.
Some movie ghosts are wistful. Or romantic. Or funny. Or even thought provoking.
But others? BEWARRRRRE!!!!!!
'A Ghost Story' (2017)
There are sad ghosts, just like there are sad clowns. Casey Affleck, for instance — killed in a crash, who comes back to his old home to haunt his grieving wife, Rooney Mara. Ludicrously, wistfully, he looks exactly like a trick-or-treat ghost — the sheet with two eyes. This minimalist meditation on time, grief and memory, from writer-director David Lowery, is slow, unsettling. Haunting, in a word. Vudu, Amazon Prime, YouTube, Google, Apple.
'The Others' (2001)
The other whats? Not humans, for sure, in this moody tale of a woman (Nicole Kidman), her photo-sensitive children, and her servants, in an isolated house in the Channel Islands where — it turns out — they are not quite so alone after all. Amazon, iTunes, Google Play, Vudu.
'Sixth Sense' (1999)
"I see dead people." And there's a reason for that, in M. Night Shyamalan's much-discussed thriller featuring a psychologist (Bruce Willis), a disturbed and disturbing child (Haley Joel Osment), and a famous "shock" ending that we won't spoil — though you probably know it already. Peacock, Apple TV, Vudu, Amazon Prime.
The ghost: Patrick Swayze. The widow: Demi Moore. The medium: Whoopi Goldberg. The revelation: pottery. Who knew it was sexy? This iconic '90s film may or may not be a classic of supernatural love. But it's certainly Hollywood's greatest advertisement for ceramics class. Max, Roku, Spectrum TV, Prime Video, Vudu, Apple TV, Redbox.
Leave it to Tim Burton to tell a ghost story from the ghost's point of view. In this case, about a ghostly couple (Alec Baldwin, Geena Davis) who hire an ectoplasmic exterminator (Michael Keaton) to rid their house of its human pests. Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice! There, we've said it. Amazon Prime, Vudu, Apple TV.
Who could resist Slimer, Zuul, and the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man? Apparently only Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd — which is why they had to be called in in the first place. This monster hit earned a place in comedy history, but — heretical opinion — we prefer "Ghostbusters II" (1989), with its demonic spirit Vigo (Norbert Grupe), a sort of ectoplasmic Vlad the Impaler, and his nutty enabler Dr Janosz Poha (Peter MacNicol, borrowing the Polish accent of his "Sophie's Choice" co-star, Meryl Streep) who warns the heroes that to Vigo "you are like the buzzing of flies!" USA Network, OXYGEN, SYFY, Bravo, E!, Prime Video, ROW8, Apple TV, Vudu.
This Tobe Hooper/Steven Spielberg shocker goes a bit over the top in the last act. But the early scenes, involving a nice suburban daddy (Craig T. Nelson), his nice normal family, and his sweet little daughter (Heather O'Rourke), who gets sucked into the TV set, are notably creepy, and Zelda Rubenstein is unforgettable as the medium with the happy message: "All are welcome in the light!" Max, Philo, Prime Video, Apple TV, Vudu or Redbox, or on TCM 12:30 a.m. Oct. 18.
'The Shining' (1980)
Just because you're dead, doesn't mean you don't have to earn a living. In "The Shining," Stanley Kubrick's epic rendering of the Stephen King novel, the ghosts include butler Grady (Philip Stone) and bartender Lloyd (Joe Turkel), who do their best to make homicidal Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson) comfortable as he plots to murder his wife and child in an empty, snowbound hotel. Kubrick brought a new twist to ghost movies: all the scary stuff happens in broad daylight. Which makes it worse. Amazon, Google Play, iTunes, and Vudu.
'The Fog' (1980)
"It's not the fog. It's what's in the fog!" Carcinogens? No — it's the ghosts of an evil ship's crew lurking within the creepy mist that blankets Point Reyes, California. John Carpenter's flashlight-in-the-face ghost yarn, starring the inevitable Adrienne Barbeau and Jamie Lee Curtis, is good spooky fun. Prime Video, Apple TV or Vudu.
'The Haunting' (1963)
Even ghosts gotta live somewhere. Hence, the Haunted House — one of Hollywood's favorite pieces of real estate. This one is especially nasty, with its middle-of-the-night pounding, cold spots, and a memorably unstable spiral staircase. Naturally, the 1999 remake (both are based on Shirley Jackson's "The Haunting of Hill House") upped the shocks — and naturally, no one talks about it. Amazon Prime Video, Vudu, Apple TV, or on TCM 1:30 a.m. Oct. 21.
'Carnival of Souls' (1962)
This unique low-budget chiller, featuring a haunted amusement pier, has a twist that out-Shyamalans M. Night Shyamalan. Recommended. Amazon Video, Google Play, YouTube, Vudu, Microsoft Store, Apple TV.
'The Innocents' (1961)
Two sweet children. A spunky governess. But this isn't "The Sound of Music." Because these kids are haunted by evil spirits. Or else the governess is losing her mind. And either way, this gorgeously photographed, subtly spooky rendering of Henry James' "The Turn of the Screw" is probably the best ghost movie ever made. Deborah Kerr's performance is a tour de force. Netflix, Amazon, Vudu.
'The Ghost and Mrs. Muir' (1947)
Is a ghost your ideal mate? eHarmony might not think so. But Hollywood has occasionally thought otherwise. The best of all the otherworldly love stories is probably this one — about an independent-minded widow (Gene Tierney) circa 1900, who is romanced by the ghost of a cranky sea captain (Rex Harrison). It sounds trite — but the movie has a depth and melancholy that is hard to forget. A lot of it has to do with the seaside setting, and Bernard Herrmann's exquisite music. Prime Video, Apple TV or Vudu or TCM 8 p.m. Oct. 20.
'Dead of Night' (1945)
This omnibus film of the uncanny — a sort of dry run for "The Twilight Zone" — includes several ghost stories. Best of all is the convalescing patient, and the ghostly hearse driver who calls up to him: "Just room for one inside sir!" Guess who, a week later, is driving the bus to take him home from the hospital. iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, Vudu.
'The Uninvited' (1944)
It sounds like a problem for Miss Manners. But it's actually a problem for Ray Milland and Ruth Hussey, whose lovely seaside house on the Cornwall coast is plagued by ghostly sobbing, inexplicable cold drafts, and the scent of Mimosa that was associated with the murderess who lived there years before. Hollywood's first attempt at a "serious" ghost movie — though mild by today's standards — still holds up pretty well. TCM 11:45 p.m. Oct. 20.
- Sign Up / Log In
Create a free profile to get unlimited access to exclusive show news, updates, and more!
The Ending of Five Nights at Freddy's Explained
Freddy Fazbear's pizza serves up animatronic mayhem — with a side of justice.
Spoiler warning! Spoilers for Five Nights at Freddy's within!
The film adaptation of Five Nights at Freddy’s loosely follows the plot of the favorite horror video game series : five young children mysteriously disappear in 1985, causing Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza to shutter its doors forever. Murdered by pizzeria owner William Afton, the child ghosts inhabit terrifying animatronic mascots : Freddy Fazbear, Foxy, Bonnie, and Chica. But the filmmakers brought in new perspectives: Mike ( Josh Hutcherson ), a sympathetic, unemployed security guard, and his introverted little sister Abby (Piper Rubio), whom he has sole custody of.
Desperate to make ends meet, Mike consults with a rather unusual career counselor, Steve Raglan ( Matthew Lillard ), who gets him a security job at the creepy, abandoned pizzeria — but little does Mike know it’s replete with crazed and murderous animatronics. When police officer Vanessa (Elizabeth Lail) swings by before the first shift to calmly warn Mike about worker “turnover,” we anticipate Mike’s impending doom. Perhaps not the best guard, Mike falls asleep constantly on the job and dreams about his younger brother, Garrett (Lucas Grant), who was kidnapped during a family camping trip years earlier. He also connects in his dreams with the ghost children, hinting at the animatronic-fueled mayhem to come.
What happens at the end of the Five Nights at Freddy's movie?
Thankfully Mike never meets his doom, though he comes close. The film’s most spectacular and nail-biting moments come at the end. After his babysitter Max (Kat Conner Sterling) is, unbeknownst to him, murdered by the animatronics in the restaurant, Mike starts bring Abby in to camp out at the pizzeria , and she connects to the animatronic critters and considers them her new friends. But they want Abby as a forever member of their demented group, and they taunt Mike that they’ll reveal the truth about his brother’s disappearance in exchange for her. When Vanessa finds out Abby is bonding with the mascots, she warns Mike that if he ever brings Abby back to Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza, she’ll shoot him, confirming our suspicions that she knows more than she’s letting on.
RELATED: Who's Who in the Five Nights at Freddy's Movie Cast?
In the fast-paced ending, Mike becomes a victim to their animatronic rage when he finally lets go of living in the past and realizes that he needs to save his very much alive sibling from her ghoulish fate. They don't take to his sudden savior complex well and make him pay. He wakes up to Vanessa tending to his wounds, and we finally learn her terrible backstory. Vanessa knows the animatronics want to bring Abby into their evil fold precisely because her dad is their dreaded ringleader, William Afton. He was the man who murdered the children and trapped their bodies and souls inside the animatronics long ago. We learn that Afton once worked at the pizzeria as a yellow rabbit (moviegoers might spot the yellow rabbit motif in the children’s drawings at the restaurant), and that when he puts his rabbit suit on, he still holds some kind of terrible supernatural sway over the children. In more twists and turns, Afton is also the career counselor who got Mike the job in the first place (Steve Raglan was an alias), and to add insult to injury, he also kidnapped and killed Mike’s little brother, Garrett, on that camping trip.
While Mike gets a giant truth bomb, Freddy visits Abby at her house and lures her back to the pizzeria, where all the animatronics turn on her. Mike and Vanessa show up just in time to thwart their crazed antics, and then Afton makes his entrance, dressed in his animatronic rabbit suit and ready to kill both Mike and Abby. Though Vanessa and Afton have a charged father-daughter confrontation (he stabs her, but she lives), it is Abby who saves the day. Communicating to the children through drawings, she reveals that it was the yellow rabbit who trapped them, and the animatronics turn on Afton and get their revenge in a satisfying ending.
But of course, it's not all completely resolved. The cops aren't called, the story isn't revealed to the larger world, and the ghosts of the children are still trapped inside those animatronics, leaving Afton to die in a back room while they wait for some kind of release. Abby, who still considers the kids her friends, is doing much better in school with the actual living children around her, which means it's much easier for Mike to keep custody of his sister, but Abby also repeatedly asks her big brother if they can go back to the restaurant and visit her animatronic friends. Mike leaves the possibility open, while also visiting a comatose Vanessa in the hospital, hoping she'll make it through the ordeal and that William Afton's trail of victims is over.
Though, as Afton warned his creations just before his death, he always comes back...
Five Nights at Freddy’s is in theaters (purchase tickets at Fandango now !) and streaming exclusively on Peacock now.
- Five Nights At Freddy's
- Behind The Scenes
How They Built the Animatronics in Five Nights at Freddy's
How To Stream The Five Nights At Freddy's Movie
Does Five Nights At Freddy's Have a Post-Credit Scene?
The video game origins of five nights at freddy’s.
How to Audition for AGT 2024: S19 Auditions Explained
Five Nights at Freddy's Creators on Bringing Video Games to Life
Simon Cowell Takes Selfie With Fantasy League Judges
Heidi Klum is OK After Fall on AGT: Fantasy League Set
Who is the New Chief, Dr. Devi, in Transplant Season 3?
What did josh hutcherson do before five nights at freddy’s.
How to Play all the Five Nights at Freddy’s Video Games
Matthew Lillard's 5 Best Genre Roles
- Main content
'Killers of the Flower Moon' actor reveals the casting director came up with the idea for Martin Scorsese's cameo, and more details about the final scene
- Larry Fessenden plays one of the radio performers at the end of "Killers of the Flower Moon."
- He talked to Insider about filming the scene, which took place at Martin Scorsese's old high school.
- Fessenden said he had "tears in his eyes" watching Scorsese shoot his cameo.
Back in 1999, Larry Fessenden was just an unknown actor from New York when he was cast as a cokehead in Martin Scorsese's gritty drama "Bringing Out the Dead."
The blink-and-you'd-miss-it part didn't lead to stardom, but he had something else to fall back on. His talents as a storyteller gradually made him a legendary figure in the independent-film world, directing horror movies like 2001's "Wendigo" and 2006's "The Last Winter" while also helping directors Kelly Reichardt ("Wendy and Lucy") and Ti West ("The House of the Devil") get their own movies off the ground as a producer.
However, during that time, he always hoped to one day work again with Scorsese, who is his "favorite living director," he told Insider.
After a few failed attempts to get cast in another Scorsese movie over the decades, Fessenden finally landed a role as one of the radio performers in the final scene of the director's latest movie, " Killers of the Flower Moon ," which stars Robert De Niro, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Lily Gladstone.
Fessenden plays an actor voicing the roles of the movie's leads, William Hale (De Niro) and Ernest Burkhart (DiCaprio), in a 1930s episode about the Osage murders on the radio broadcast "The Lucky Strike Hour" ( which really happened ). He's perfectly cast, as he was given the opportunity to show off his vocal talents, something he's mastered over the years doing audio horror plays, called " Tales from Beyond the Pale ," with his filmmaking friend Glenn McQuaid.
In a recent interview with Insider, Fessenden reflected on the making of the scene at Scorsese's old high school, which included days of rehearsals, and being one of the few people allowed to witness Scorsese filming his own dramatic cameo.
Early in your career, you had a very small part in "Bringing Out the Dead." Have you been trying since to work with Scorsese again?
Well, the bottom line is in showbiz, if you know the casting agent, you have your foot in the door and Ellen Lewis, who has worked for Scorsese for years, is graceful and steadfast.
She had brought me in for "Wolf of Wall Street," "Shutter Island," and she would always say, "We're always looking for something for you, Larry."
She's a great creative collaborator for Marty and she's also a straight talker. I reached out to her when I heard "The Irishman" was starting up and she said, "We just don't have anything for you," and that's fine. Each project has its vibe.
You also didn't get cast in "Wolf of Wall Street" or "Shutter Island." So was it a shock getting the call from her for "Killers of the Flower Moon?"
Yes. And it was a highlight in my life. It's not just, "Oh, I might get an acting gig." This is Scorsese, my favorite living director.
Originally, I was supposed to be in the actual production down in Oklahoma. And I even had a death scene so I was excited. But then I read the book and my character had like one sentence. [ Laughs .]
What was the role you were originally going to play?
His name was John Ramsey. He's one of the goons. The only fun thing was I was going to have a choking scene. I was going to be poisoned. So I auditioned for that and this was during COVID so we did the audition through Zoom and it all felt like a go, that I had landed the part.
Then one day, I was randomly at the doctor's and Ellen called — and you always pick up when it's Ellen — and she said, "Listen, Larry, they cut that role." The script had undergone a lot of changes. But she said, "We're going to find you something else."
The film wrapped in the fall of 2021 and I hadn't heard from Ellen so I thought maybe it wasn't going to work out. But eventually, Ellen called and said they were going to shoot the coda to the film in New York.
She described how the scene would be a radio play and I was so tickled. I told her about "Tales" and she sort of took that information and conveyed it to Marty.
Where did you shoot it?
We shot it at Scorsese's old high school in the Bronx: Cardinal Hayes High School.
It's this beautiful Catholic high school. Marty told us that, as a kid, he would take the subway from Little Italy to this school run by men of the cloth. Marty teased me that these guys were really hardcore and said, "Larry, you would have been pilloried! They would have slapped you upside the head with that hair." He was very lively and engaged through the whole shoot.
It has this beautiful theater, and that's why it was chosen for the movie. The funny thing is, it's not named after him. It's called the Regis Philbin Auditorium. I think Marty has a closet named after him. [ Laughs .]
Was the scene shot in one day?
No. This is what I want to convey, the care and the detail for what appears on-screen for maybe four minutes was remarkable.
We had two days of rehearsal at Steiner Studios in Brooklyn. That was run by this great AD, Jeremy Marks. He was rehearsing the orchestra, the radio-play actors, integrating with the Foley artists, and everything was taped out on the floor. I was accustomed to all of this having done the "Tales From Beyond the Pale" radio plays. During this time, we are also getting our hair done just right, and measured for our wardrobe.
Then the man comes, Scorsese. It's this great flourish of activity. Then it's very hush-hush. He sits in this white chair, the same one he's sitting in if you saw the photo of him shooting in the subway car with Timothée Chalamet .
Marty always sits in that chair, I've learned. That chair must be carried around the country.
Marty goes [ Speaks in high-pitched Scorsese voice ], "Okay, so let me see what you got!" And we do the whole thing and we're quite proud of ourselves and he starts breaking everything down, even something small like, "That's supposed to be a car horn? That doesn't sound like a car horn at all."
He was very engaged with every detail and each individual person, the musicians, the Foley artists. After that, we took a week off, and then we shot it at the school. The shoot was three days, I think.
Were there any notes Scorsese gave you?
He was concerned with the level of the accent. Was it too cheesy? Remember, I'm supposed to play an actor in a radio play, not an Osage. You want to play an actor on a day job.
It was fun because I'm the actor voicing both the William Hale and Ernest Burkhart characters, so I'm playing De Niro and DiCaprio. The irony is I could have done a spot on De Niro imitation. [ Laughs .] I may have played around with that a few times with Marty, but that wasn't going to be the move.
What was the actual shoot like?
We arrive in the Bronx. There's a huge crane in the auditorium, the set is beautiful. All the extras are there. Everyone is being safe between the shots and wearing masks because this was during COVID, still.
Marty would come in the second half of the day after we rehearsed. Everything was refined during the downtime between rehearsal and shoot. Then, we shot it. We go through close-ups and Marty makes adjustments. It was a very collaborative process. He is guiding and exploring with you to find what he thinks is right. And I had great fun with Jack White.
Did you know Jack was also going to be in the scene?
Well, Ellen Lewis is holding your hand through the whole process, so she informed me on what to expect. So much information is shared because there's an expectation from everyone. I've been in big movies before but with this, it just felt like a very precious experience.
Jack and I hung out, he got us all tickets to see him perform a month or so later. I gave him my son's record and his son was getting into watching movies on VHS so I sent him a copy of my old movie "Wendigo" on VHS. It's fun to imagine Jack White and his kid watching "Wendigo" on some old tube TV or something.
Did you know Scorsese at some point was going to have his own cameo in the scene?
The reality is Ellen Lewis had suggested this to him before rehearsals started. She said, "Marty, you have to play that part." That's the power of the collaborations he has. We know of Robbie Robertson, Thelma Schoonmaker, but Ellen is also essential. She thought he should do it.
So on the day of shooting, they cleared the room, and the whole audience left. But we, the actors on stage, were allowed to sit in and watch.
I had tears in my eyes. I could see this was so seminal to the whole project, Marty's career, even without seeing the movie yet. I just sensed there was genuine anger and a mea culpa about violence. It was profound.
He did it several times and directed himself. We all felt quite privileged to watch it happen.
When did you see the movie for the first time?
I went to the premiere with my wife. Because of the strike, it was slightly crushing because Leo and Bob and Lily weren't there. That would have been the cherry on top — not so much walking the carpet with them, but just being in the room with them. But Marty and Ellen and Thelma and Rodrigo were all there.
What was it like to see your scene?
I was so excited to see the movie that I often forgot that I would show up at the end. When it happened, it went by very quickly.
But in advance of that, I had bought a ticket to see the movie on its opening day. So I went to a theater and watched it alone and it was a much better experience. You're not sitting there in Lincoln Center all nervous. They cut some of our stuff out of the radio play, but the cuts made sense.
Seeing you are such a fan of Scorsese's work, can you rank where this scene stands among all the memorable ones from his filmography before it?
I felt it had a profound and deep sadness, a sense of resignation and outrage. I feel that is present in all of his work. I don't like to rank — it's a specific movie and I feel it has the weight of our times in it.
I like to joke it's Marty's "woke" film, but that's condescending because that was the mission. A lot has been said about how they veered from making a white-man savior FBI movie and it's profoundly better of a film because it's not a procedural, it's a portrait of the cancer inside our industrial civilization; that everything is to be used and exploited for money. And the complete contradiction is I do believe Leo's character loved his wife.
The weight of it all is on-screen. This is what makes cinema lasting, it is a recording of all the elements, contributions, and care curated by the singular vision of the director and his team. That's what makes a masterwork.
This interview has been condensed and edited for clarity.