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Parents' Guide to

Shutter

By Cynthia Fuchs, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Bad script, so-so scares mar Asian horror remake.

Movie PG-13 2008 85 minutes
Shutter Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 1 parent review

age 12+

Just plain bad

Really bad American remake that totally gives the original a bad name. I am sick of this watered-down PG-13 crap that America is spewing out these days, where is the real horror? This movie contains like one "f" word and some violence, and also a non-graphic sex scene. If you want to see something scary, watch the original.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1 ):
Kids say (9 ):

Shifting the location to Tokyo and setting Caucasian stars against a Japanese ghost (the original features all Thai characters) changes the movie's haunting dynamic. On one level it's yet another instance of a white woman stalked by a vengeful Asian ghost. But on another, as Jane comes to understand the reasons for Megumi's anger, the women realize a shared grievance premised on gender imbalance and sexual abuses. It's hardly revolutionary for a scary movie to have a Caucasian woman wandering frightened through Tokyo, harassed by some supernatural phenomenon. But Shutter is almost perversely upfront in connecting privileged, self-justifying Caucasian men with the problem at its core.

And yet, despite this potential complexity, the movie lapses repeatedly into tired conventions. The "scares" are bloody but not very clever, the plot increasingly silly. In part this is a function of lapses in the script, as explanatory scenes pop up in strange places and a voiceover fills in for scenes missing altogether. Jane's plucky resilience makes her sympathetic, and when at last she literally leaves the movie before its end, you admire her sudden good judgment and wish her well.

Movie Details

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