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A family moves to a new flat on a big building. They get to know the building was erected over a burnt slum, when lots of poor people died in a non accidental fire set by the constructors. Soon their only child, a boy, is kidnapped by what seems to be a strange humanoid creature lurking in secret through the ventilation and trash pipes that connect everywhere around. As the father is heavily wounded by the creature and goes to hospital, the mother undertakes the investigation the police should do. But what she will discover will put herself in conflict with her own beliefs as a mother. Written by
"The Monster" (aka "Gwai muk" or "Home Sweet Home") is not your average Hong Kong horror movie, and there is no woman in a white dress running around with her face covered by hair. And while it is labeled as horror, the movie is not really scary, whereas it is more disturbing and psychologically chilling.
The story is about a family moving into a new apartment, but there is something sinister lurking in the maze-like ventilation shafts of the apartment complex, and the young boy in the family becomes the center of unwanted attention. When he is abducted, the family bonds are pushed to the limits. And with a tragic past such as the one lurking in the ventilation shafts, it quickly becomes a race of life and death.
Story-wise, then "The Monster" is adequate, but nothing overly memorable. But what makes the movie great is the extraordinary performances put on by Shu Qi (playing the mother) and Karena Lam (playing 'the monster'). I am not overly familiar with the Work of Karena Lam, despite having watched Hong Kong movies for close to 25-30 years already. She really put on an amazing performance as a crazy woman.
There are no super spectacular CGI effects in the movie, but it doesn't need such to be interesting. The make-up on Karena Lam was quite good and served its purpose quite well.
If you haven't already seen Cheang Poi Soi's movie "The Monster", then you should take the time to do so.
I will say that the movie's DVD cover really doesn't do the movie any justice at all.
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