I think I’ve been conditioned to hate most remakes of Asian cinema, but Mirrors turned out better than I thought it would be. Some of the criticism leveled at the movie has had to do with some bad acting by supporting players, and this is true, but none of the supporting players here gets a whole lot of screen time. This is an extremely gory movie. About every 20 minutes a person is killed or disfigured, and there is a ton of blood whenever that happens. In any case, the plot concerns an ex-cop named Ben Carson.
He is forced by necessity to take a job as a night watchman at a Department Store that has been gutted by a major fire. It doesn’t take him long to find out that something’s not quite right with his new job. Sure enough, he soon learns that the Department Store was once a totally different type of institution, and that the man who burned it down had also killed his own family. While not the greatest characters in a horror movie they are more than faceless characters. There is a good amount of drama added in and actually I think the dramatic elements worked better than the horror. The film relies on getting into your head and planting fear of an everyday object to terrify you. And it succeeds.
The movie takes some interesting twists and turns, both supernatural and psychologically. The concept behind it is interesting, but when you finally find out what’s going in, you might find yourself scratching your head, wondering how it even slightly makes sense. In terms of CGI, Amy Smart was barely in the movie, but her death scene is destined to go down in history as one of the best ever in this genre. My jaw still hurts from watching it.
Mirrors is a slightly better than average horror film, but it’s still going through the motions. As far as an Asian remake, it excels well. This film does try to capitalize on the inherent eeriness of mirrors, and on the suspicion many of us fleetingly entertain – that the reflection we see in the mirror has a life of its own. Without re-hashing the plot, Keifer Sutherland is good in his role and looks like a guy, down on his luck and trying to restart his life. There is zero character development for anyone in the movie. It starts with action, keeps it moving and really never slows down. Horror movies that deal with evil spirits need to take some lessons from Mirrors. Exceptional film with great visuals and gore. Color me surprised!