Director Byeong-ki Ahn generates some spooky images an underlit face occluding Ji-won Has reflection in a mirror, or her seeing the ghostly child on her back. One of the spookiest things about the film is the performance given by young Ji-yeon Choi, a child actor with an unnaturally wide face. The film becomes extremely eerie once Ji-yeon becomes possessed, none the more so than the scene where she is about to throw herself down the stairs. That said, while Byeong-ki Ahn creates spooky moments, Phone seems at best an okay but hardly standout Ring copy. The complaint might be something that one could also make of Ring is that for the most part what we enter the film about haunted tv broadcasts/cellphone calls is not what the film ends up being, which in both cases is about a murdered girls spirit demanding vengeance and the solving of her murder. Similarly here, the initial element about the underage sex ring and Ji-won Ha thinking that she is being followed turns out to be a red herring. Where Phone does work is in an excellent end revelation. This brings all the elements that have up to that point merely seemed a random part of the background together with considerable cleverness and a beautiful surprise revelation. Indeed, the plot that we end up with makes far more sense than the one in One Missed Call.
Byeong-ki Ahn has directed a number of other horror films, including Nightmare (2000), Ouija Board (2004), Apt. (2006), Bunshinsaba (2012), Bunshinsaba 2 (2013) and Bunshinsaba 3 (2014).
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