Reviewer's Rating 3 out of 5   User Rating 4 out of 5
R-Point (2005)
15Contains bloody violence and strong language

Deep in the Vietnam War, on a lonely island known as R-Point, a troop of Korean soldiers disappears but their unnerving distress messages are still being picked up by HQ. Lieutenant Choi (Kam Woo-Sung) is dispatched with another troop to search for the missing men and solve the mystery. But (wouldn't you know it?) R-Point is cursed and the hapless squaddies soon discover Charlie isn't the only one gunning for them in this atmospheric but lightweight chiller.

Once the soldiers set up camp in a derelict mansion, events quickly take a turn for the worse and the tension is cranked up as the men are picked off one by one by forces unknown. The war-torn jungles of Vietnam are fertile ground for psychological drama and this one comes with the added bonus of supernatural hi-jinks - think Platoon with ectoplasm - and in the first reel, director Kong Su-Chang piles on the paranormal. There are some truly nerve-cranking moments including the hellish voices leaking from field radios and a band of spectral soldiers vanishing into the elephant grass.


But as the men lurch from one unexplained incident to the next, the tension fizzles out. There are some half-baked attempts to string a coherent plot together and a woman in white flits into shot occasionally to provide a link to past events. But by the time the grand finale rolls around, you're more baffled than terrified. It's a shame because the cloying atmosphere of cold sweat and tropical fug, enhanced by the Cambodian locations, could be cut with a bayonet. Still, it hasn't stopped R-Point becoming the latest Asian ghost story to get the Hollywood makeover - Hero director Zhang Yimou is apparently being measured for fatigues.

In Korean with English subtitles.

End Credits

Director: Kong Su-Chang

Writer: Kam Woo-Sung

Stars: Kam Woo-Sung, Sohn Byung-Ho, Oh Tae-Kyung, Park Won-Sang

Genre: Horror

Length: 107 minutes

Cinema: 16 September 2005

Country: South Korea

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