Front cover of Horror Hotline ... Big Head Monster DVD.

Horror Hotline ... Big Head Monster



out of

Directed by:

Soi Cheang


Francis NgBen
Josie HoMavis
Sam Lee
Niki Chow
Michelle Zhang

Writing Credits:

Sunny Chan
Soi Cheang


From Poker Industries



Video Signal:

I bought this because it stars Francis Ng, who is always good, and Sam Lee, who is usually amusing. Because of the cover art, I was expecting a comedy like Ghostbusters, or at least a horror movie with comical moments alá Biozombie
Ben is the producer of a radio program, Horror Hotline, where callers tell about their experiences with the supernatural. Ben doesn't know that his live in girl friend recently aborted their baby, and is dreaming about the child.
Mavis is a reporter for an American TV show, in Hong Kong to do a segment on the Horror Hotline. She and Ben do not get on.
One show, "Chris" phones in with the experience of he and his six buddies with a Big Head Baby back in 1963 when they were in short pants. He gives enough clues that Mavis, who is intrigued by the story, can track down where it happened and the people involved. Ben accompanies.
I do not watch many horror films so maybe the incoherence of the plot is standard for the genre. Ideas are brought up and left hanging, such as tying the abortion of Ben's baby to the Big Head Baby and that the Big Head Baby is full of rage for being stoned to death. Sam Lee is in an opening sequence where he sees the monster. He spends the film cowering in a mental institution but comes out of it to take Mavis and Ben to where he saw the monster. Why was he in the movie?
There is some interesting stuff in the movie. There is a very creepy and atmospheric scene where Mavis is investigating the birthing room where the monster was born and hears the birth. Also, there exists, or was created for the film, a whole Big Head Baby mythology.
While the person responsible for the subtitling has a much better command of English than I do of Cantonese, it was obvious that English is a second language ("product" instead of "producer" for instance). It is possible that I was missing crucial information because of subtitle failure. However, it seems likely that it was script by committee with each writer taking separate reels and little effort being made to tie the scenes together.
Francis Ng was good but had little to do.
The DVD had two endings, neither very satisfying. The sound was adequate. The picture was not anamorphic and there were noticable compression artifacts in the blacks.

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