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This is the story of Yan, a young woman haunted by fleeting images of what she believes to be dead people. Told that it is all in her mind by her psychologist Jim, Yan still cannot find any other explanations for her visions. Soon, her suspicions are confirmed when Jim begins seeing the same things she does and the two begin to unravel a mystery that leads to a forgotten past. Written by
A watchable diversion here for those that enjoy the slow paced Asian spook films but have grown tired of the technological interests and or patently contrived jolts built on raw psychological grounds like Ringu or Phone. For Inner Sense the psyche takes precedence, rather than serving as mechanics bench upon which scare tactics are assembled the psyche itself is what we see put together. And the interest is in how the assembly comes to affect the assembler, the relationship of faulty mechanism and mechanic. Unfortunately this is on the whole a pretty basic film though, without too much to say it makes its mark chiefly as a slickly oiled emotional engagement, well performed with a couple of fun scares and a few interesting visuals. In his final role Leslie Cheung is likable with carefully measured darker shades, his psychologist character drawing up the roots of his co stars eerie visions and in the process unloosing troubles within. A convincing turn that one is hard pressed not to find somewhat drawn from tragic reality, it makes for a poignant swansong. Kar Yan Lam is the lady haunted, repressed, high strung and impressionable she succeeds in conveying the tight wound character. A few familiar faces like Waise Lee and Norman Chu appear for solid support, but this is for the most part a sealed off affair and sufficiently compelling in its isolation. Downcast and rain-slicked yet clear eyed cinematography from Kwok Man Keung contributes suitably glum atmosphere and grants the rather obvious (it even gets spelled out) symbolism moments of visual flair. Things all come together to make the film work, though the treatment of story and themes is generally shallow and unadventurous. I didn't expect something of the calibre of Persona (which this film in its fashion resembles), but I did hope for something with less simmer and more heat. Actually in fairness it does heat up in the finale, but in the way of maudlin melodrama that leaves an unfortunate taste. Ultimately I had a perfectly reasonable time here, and as a somewhat interesting filler piece this works well enough, but more pop was really needed. 5/10.
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