The Grudge


Directed by: Takashi Shimizu
Written by:Stephen Susco
Starring: Sarah Michelle Gellar, Jason Behr, William Mapother, Clea DuVall, Bill Pullman
Released: Novmeber 18, 2004
Grade: C

There’s a legend that when someone dies in the grip of a powerful rage, they leave behind a curse.  This is the flimsy premise behind The Grudge, starring Sarah Michelle Gellar.  Those going to see Miss Gellar display her “talent” will be sorely disappointed.  She utters few words and looks rather disinterested (if you ask me).  Still, the film debuted at number one at the U.S. leaving many of the belief that Gellar is the new box-office draw.  I can only laugh.

Set in Japan, Gellar plays care worker Karen Davis.  Her latest assignment is to care for an elderly woman is a near comatose state.  On arriving at the house, an immediate shiver runs down Karen’s spine.  She hears strange sounds from within the walls and something just isn’t right.  Adding to the mystery is the fact that the previous care worker to visit the house has disappeared.

Looking upstairs, Karen makes a horrifying discovery.  When the police arrive to investigate, she learns there’s a history behind this particular residence.  Others have fallen victim and yet it cannot be logically explained.  A shaken Karen wants to know more but her life is now in increasing danger…

Based on a Japanese film of the same title, The Grudge is pathetically weak.  There’s a creaking noise which is supposed to be scary but I could only cringe at how often it was used and how unconvincing it sounded.  Director Takashi Shimizu tries to mess with us by using shadows, surprises and scary music but when you boil it down, this film is about nothing.  The only scary element was watching how many people paid to see it.