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Honogurai mizu no soko kara
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Reviews & Ratings for
Dark Water More at IMDbPro »Honogurai mizu no soko kara (original title)

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Amazing, creepy, beautiful

9/10
Author: Jonas (jonas013@spray.se) from Stockholm, Sweden
29 November 2002

Maybe there´s not m-o-r-e water in this film than in The Big Blue (Besson). But it´s... darker, and sure there is a lot. Not to mention the water is... alive. Sort of. The suspension grows steadily while the relatively simple story rolls on.

I saw this at Stockholm Film Festival, starting at midnight, and it was a thrill! Creepy, of course, but also very beautiful. Excellent acting, not least the six year old girl character.

It starts like an everyday drama, about a woman and her daughter in the middle of a post-divorce trauma. It ends like... well, let´s only say Stephen King could have written it (but really not just this good).

The movie reminds me vaguely of The Shining, there is also at least one very clear reference to the classic Kubrick movie. But here you don´t have to watch Jack Nicholson. And no blood, just water. Dark water.

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Unusual, unexpected, & thrilling Japanese Horror

8/10
Author: Damnation from Malaysia
6 October 2002

The wonderful thing about watching a non-hollywood flick is that the storylines are often completely unexpected and original. This movie (aka Darkwater) is a welcome breath of fresh air. Its well acted, creepy and you wont be able to guess what happens in the end. The music, lighting and camera angles are top notch. Its both creepy and utterly compelling. Watch it NOW!!!!

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Jesus what a fright!!

8/10
Author: chimera-4 from NZ - Palmerston North
11 September 2002

Like Ring this one's a slow burner that builds up a gradual feeling of dread. There are some creepy moments that will give you the willies but one bit in particular that will make you cack your pants (it did me, the first time a film has done that to me since I was in my early teens).

You may wonder whats so scary about water dripping from the ceiling but as the meaning of the water becomes ever more slowly apparant, the dripping water becomes a precursor of whats to follow. The ending was not what I'd had pegged at all and was a bit of a surprise, but it will leave you thinking for a few days after you've seen it and that can only be a sign of a good movie.....

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A worthy follow up...

10/10
Author: (foukemonster@hotmail.com) from Scotland
7 September 2002

A nice little chiller with a few tricks up its sleeve, DARK WATER brings us more deliberately paced fear and dread in the style of his classic film RING. If you loved that movie, by all means seek out DARK WATER wherever you can (currently available on Import DVD), but don't dive in expecting the same kind of plotline as its predecessor - it's not, but it is just as satisfying.

I'm not about to reveal anything of the story here. Let's face it, if you got this far on IMDB, you already know what you're looking for - you just want to know what others thought of it. I thought this movie was fantastic. Very scary. Please go and see it.

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Atmospheric horror that lingers in the mind

Author: lazysarcyfool from London, England
27 August 2002

As with other Japanese horror films I have seen, Dark Water has a slow, subtle build up, introducing the scares and tension bit by bit - there are no big scares early on to set the scene. This is the films strength - it sucks you in, putting you on edge ready for the climax, and what a climax it is! Just when you think you have predicted how the film will play out, all hell breaks loose and you are left a stunned and cowering wreck whilst an equally eerie and melancholic anticlimax brings the film to it's conclusion.

This is top notch scary stuff, and I would recommend it to anyone who has been disappointed by the recent appalling non-scary horror that has come out of the US recently. Whoever claimed that Jeepers Creepers was the best horror film in the last ten years should be locked in a small theatre with a dripping ceiling and forced to watch Dark Water immediately.

This is pure atmospheric horror, with true scares that do not rely on blood and gore, and the effect lingers in the mind.

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one trick pony

Author: KuraiSoma from Bloomington, IN USA
26 August 2002

I hate saying this, but while I did enjoy this film; after seeing ring 1/2 and ghost actress you realize that there isn't much difference between these films aside from character and setting. Now, this isn't to say that 'Dark Waters' is a bad film at all. If anything, the plot is more cohesive than Ring; and it certainly doesn't lack in mood or creep factor. There are a few scenes that'll have you clutching your cover to your face (like me), at the least Im sure you'll be left cringing from time to time. I've heard mixed reviews comparing the scare factor of this and ring, I'll have to side with the camp that says it really depends on the viewer. I still get creeped out and wonder if Sadako is lurking, but I dont anticipate the same happening with this movie experience. All in all Im fairly pleased with this movie, but Id like to see the writer/director involved with a 'fresh' product. They've mastered this sort of story, and its time to move on.

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Deeply disturbing!

Author: almighty4 from Denmark
15 April 2002

Let me start out by saying that I am a big fan of horror movies. I have seen just about everything and have reached the point where nothing really gets to me anymore. Sure, I get a kick out of "reading" a movie and predicting the moments where the audience jump out of their seats. But in all honesty - I haven´t been scared in years.

When I first saw Ring, my expectations were high. I had heard from friends who had seen it that it was the best thing to come along in many years. Perhaps even the best ever in the genre. On the internet I read wonderful things as well.

Here in Denmark we have an event each year called the "Nightfilmfestival", where Ring was voted "best festivalfilm of 2000". Then I went to see it and... Nothing! Dissapointment! Depression set in! It had some unique camerawork and the cinematography was topnotch, but it just didn´t get to me. Dammit!

But now I have seen the light. Hideo Nakata, the director of Ring, has given us "Dark Water". If "Ring" made you stay up all night, trembling with fear, you should NOT see "Dark Water" - it is that creepy! This is the kind of film you go see if you arer a sucker for punishment (The good kind) like me. You won´t find a single drop of blood in it. Nor will you find any scenes involving knives, scissors or guns.

Hell, the acting isn´t even that good. But the atmosphere created in this masterpiece is unparallelled. I refuse to give away any of the scenes or in any way spoil it for you. Just go see it for yourselves.

But to illustrate what you are in for: remember that scene in "The Shining" where the kid is riding his bigwheel around the hallways of the Overlook Hotel and he runs into the twin girls? That was creepy as hell, wasn´t it? "Dark Water" is like that for the entire length of the movie! Only ten times as spooky. I am not exagerating.

It´s been 48 hours since I saw it and I still have goosebumps.

Be afraid - be very afraid...

(P.s. Please excuse the spelling.)

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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

A lousy excuse for a ghost story.

4/10
Author: DigitalRevenantX7 from Australia
5 May 2016

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

A divorced mother wins custody of her young daughter after a bitter court battle. Together they move into a rundown apartment complex where the apartment is dirt cheap but soon after moving in, they begin to find the unit plagued by water damage. Not just that, but a red child's bag begins to appear in strange places, even after being disposed of. The mother, who is beginning to fear for her sanity after her tough childhood, discovers that the bag belonged to & is the sign of a young girl who has lived in the apartment above them & who disappeared several years ago.

Ever since he hit paydirt with RING, director Hideo Nakata has gone on to make several films in both his native Japan & in Hollywood. For years, fans had been waiting for him to return to the horror genre & make another classic, a wish that Nakata had proved too tempted to avoid.

Unlike the majority of horror fans, I was one of the few that didn't think that Ring was any sort of classic. Sure it had a couple of great jump moments (particularly that scene with Sadako climbing out of the TV), but it was a hideously overrated supernatural mystery film that had a plot that was obtuse at times & never made any particular sense (not to mention an internal logic that was twisted like a pretzel). However, it did have some interest & the remake was considerably better.

With Dark Water, Nakata tried to do another Ring, only with a red child's bag & a flood of water standing for a videotape. Most of Nakata's fans & even some critics who had mixed feelings about Ring were impressed with Dark Water but I wasn't one of them. To be honest, the plot belongs more in a drama film than a straight horror film. Not just that, but Nakata's skill as a filmmaker isn't entirely consistent – his style was crude with Ring, but when it came to making Ring 2, he had improved somewhat. Here, however, his skill deserted him. There are no jump shocks & Nakata's constant use of the red bag's ghostly appearances was a poor attempt at providing tension.

When it came to the ending, Nakata does the same sort of foolish mistake that M. Night Shyamalan did for his films & throws in an end twist that makes no sense whatsoever. I'll explain the following – the girl fell into the water tower & drowned (something that went unnoticed by anyone else despite the girl living in the building & which was never investigated) & haunted the building ever since. Her apartment's kitchen taps were turned on & left on for at least six months, resulting in the apartment being flooded (how on Earth does an apartment become flooded without anyone noticing for six months? Doesn't make sense to me either), which resulted in the water damage to the heroine's apartment. Not just that, but the ghost's red bag keeps reappearing in places despite being dropped into the water originally by the girl herself. And how does the drinking water (which came from the water tower the girl fell into) become dirty without most of the people living there noticing it. I mean, hair shows up in some of the taps, for crying out aloud! But in the ending, the ghost forces the mother to abandon her daughter & join her in the afterlife for no reason. Really stupid if you ask me.

Having said that, the day-to-day drama the mother & daughter living in the apartment go through is okay, although strictly routine. Not just that, the acting is reasonable & has some interest in it (Rio Kanno makes for one cute kid & who would make a good actress when she grows up). The epilogue that follows the mediocre ending compensates somewhat for the weakness of the rest of the film's story but doesn't elevate what is an otherwise unexceptional film.

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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Paranoia Made Manifest

7/10
Author: robertconnor from England
10 June 2005

A recently divorced woman and her small daughter move into a desolate tower block. Already distressed over an acrimonious custody battle with her ex-husband, the woman becomes even more unsteady as she begins to see and hear frightening and inexplicable things in and around the high rise apartment. Gradually she begins to realise that what she is witnessing is somehow linked to the disappearance of a little girl who lived in the apartment above.

Nakata creates a grimly unsettling and claustrophobic atmosphere within the damp and decaying tower block, and the almost omnipresent rain further suffocates both characters and viewer. Kuroki is deeply convincing as the increasingly unhinged mother, clinging desperately to the fragments of home and family, and Nakata has captured an astonishing performance from Kanno as the woman's 6 year old child. Her final scene is heart-wrenching.

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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

A lot in common with Ringu

7/10
Author: Michael Clough from Melbourne Australia
18 August 2003

Another very solid horror tale by Hideo Nakata. Suspenseful throughout, but for those who have seen Ringu a little predictable as it explores similar themes.

The performances by the two lead actors are very good, Hitomi Kuroki as the mother struggling to cope with her divorce & Rio Kanno as her young daughter, Kanno is especially good in the final scenes in which she appears. The intensity Kanno shows in the final scenes are rarely seen by actors so young.

Many comparison can be drawn between this film & Nakata's masterpiece, Ringu. Both have young girls, who died before their time in watery graves as the "evil" ghost seeking vengeance, both are faceless. Water plays an important part in both films, more so in Dark Water. Also both protagonist have their own calling card of doom, Sadako in Ringu had the videotape, Mitsuko has the red bag in this film.

A film well worth checking out, especially if you enjoyed Ringu.

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