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11 out of 13 people found the following review useful:

The Best Indonesian Horror in 2006!!!

10/10
Author: GhostBoy19 from Indonesia
15 March 2007

Cool, cool, cool! Love it, love it, love it! Finally ...... an Indonesian horror flick that doesn't hurt my eyes ... that creeps me out of my skin ... that really keeps me wanting to know more about the characters ... about what's going to happen next ...... and ... oh, Julie Estelle!!! Such a sexy girl! Awrite ... about the story. Well, Julie is Sam (or Samantha), who finds a dorm in a scary location. Well, she doesn't mind it being scary as long as the rent is cheap. Besides, something is like calling her to come inside the house. Very gently she hears her name being whispered by the breeze.

So, she starts living there despite. Her boyfriend, Agung (Evan Sanders ... dude, you need to learn how to act!), is worried. Sam doesn't really listen to him, and this is because he has done something wrong in the past that causes a cold cold war between them.

The keeper of the house sings an ancient Javanese chant that somehow gets into Sam's nerve. Next thing she knows ... people around her start to die a horrible death one by one. That's the mystery ... what is connecting her, the place, and all the deaths ... and the legendary "Kuntilanak" ... and Indonesian she-demon. (In Malaysia, it's called "Pontianak".) I like the fact that the movie redefines an urban legend. In real life, people always say that Kuntilanak is a rather pretty ghost. Here, no way! Not pretty at all. In fact, Kuntilanak here does not look like an ex-human being at all.

I also like how Kuntilanak appears (not gonna tell you guys here ... not gonna ruin the surprise!). Everything is so gorgeously creepy and beautifully spooky. The visual and art direction is very very very good! The music is not overdone.

And the ending ......... I love the ending!!! You guys also have to check out the sexy Ratu Felisha! Boy, she's hot! And the old bad woman is also great. (She reminds me of my devilish aunt).

This is the best Indonesian horror of 2006!!! Definitely!

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8 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

An Atmosphere To Bring Home

10/10
Author: moviegirl1982
15 March 2007

Among the new Indonesian horror movies during the last two years, "Kuntilanak" a.k.a. "The Chanting" may have been the only one that pays real attention to story-telling and strong characterization, and of course, a proper visual treatment.

The story is simple and formulaic. Rather than giving away cheap thrills, "Kuntilanak" is more about a creepy atmosphere. It starts rather slow, and the building up is a little too step-by-step. Nevertheless, the makers seem to really understand what kind of horror they are making - a B-grade horror, that is, judging from the typical shower scene, the screaming babes, and the too-hunky guy with robotic gesture.

Oh, and Julie Estelle rocks big time! Man, she's so creepy! The chant is original and freaking scary. I so don't want to listen to it in the dark. Though lacking of jump-off-your-seat scenes, "Kuntilanak" has succeeded in making me and my friends peeping through our hands throughout the movie. There are only 2 or 3 points where we went screaming, but all worth our noisiests! I came out of the theater shivering, plus craving for a sequel. Please, please, please!

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7 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

A Stand Out

10/10
Author: jhananto from Indonesia
15 March 2007

It's an effort to watch this movie, mainly because of the long queues, even when I caught it in Kuala Lumpur. I'm glad I endured the queue.

This is a very fresh and creative take on what's deemed as more than just an urban legend - Kuntilanak is a make-believe ghost that has shaped the society and culture of Indonesia for generations. Grandmothers talk about her to their naughty grandchildren to scare them. Definitely, Kuntilanak is an icon very close to everybody who grew up in Indonesia. This fact could be a burden for the filmmakers. If they made the easiest way - that is merely visualizing all the old ladies's tale - "Kuntilanak" could have easily fallen to the "predictable" or "rotten" category.

Yet, both the director and writer did not chose the easy way.

"Kuntilanak" follows a chapter in a young girl's life. With her, the audience is brought to a lot of revelations of what or who "actually" is Kuntilanak. It connects with an ancient Javanese chant. It also connects with the girl's identity. Moreover, Kuntilanak here does not kidnap little kids as what our grandmothers always say. Kuntilanak kills her victims horribly.

The captivating story is then packaged in a very stunning art direction, and brought to life by great talents such as Julie Estelle (the lead actress), and Alice Iskak.

"Kuntilanak" does not stand out only among other new Indonesian horror flicks. Due to its faithfulness to the genre, and delightful storytelling, "Kuntilanak" is among the best new Indonesian movies. It should be considered another milestone.

I believe "Kuntilanak" has set a new standard for upcoming Indonesian horrors.

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Good one!

5/10
Author: Hoke Kristyanto from Germany
1 September 2009

I didn't get into the movie with much expectation. I bought the DVD a while ago and to be honest, I still have my own interpretations and imagination on kuntilanak since it is really an urban legend back home in Indonesia.

I must say, I was impressed. The plot was pretty simple and there were plot holes here and there. But, hey, I've seen a lot of horror movies and there were always plot holes of some kind. The visual effects were good. I think Julie Estele was not bad, and the chanting was creepy. The dialogs were great in terms of that's how young people talk with each other. And you see how Sam changed the way she talks while she was talking with Agung's mom. The cars did disturb me, though. I am not sure why they put a Ford Mustang and a Jaguar(is that a Jaguar) in the movie.

I also watched the "making of" and I was a bit disappointed that there was no mention about the post-productions and the special effects. The movie reminds me somehow of Ju-on. This is a new interpretation of kuntilanak, but just see for yourself. Two thumbs up!

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Indonesia's Best Horror Film 2006

Author: ichocolat from i1chocolat.blogspot.com
26 February 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I don't really like horror film, as I do not the fact that usually horror film is only meant to scare people through gruesome make-up, glimpses of the ghosts every other scenes, and blood fright-fest.

However, I decided to give this film a chance, partly due to the rave review by my friends.

And I was pleasantly surprised to know that film is a quite good horror film. Yeah I had gripes about this film, but let's point out the good points in it first.

This film follows Sam, a girl who rent a room in a dormitory, and the life that she leads. Unlike other Indonesia horror film, which concentrates more on the haunted house, this revolves around her.

Her acting is convincing, though unpredictable. She appeared strong and steadfast in some scenes, but appear deeply troubled and wimpy in other scenes.

A kuntilanak is better known as she-demon (the Malaysians called it pontianak), is a folklore told from generations down to scare naughty children, to make them behave. It is portrayed as a pretty girl with white hair that goes around terrifying people. The only way to stop it is by hammering a wooden nail in her neck. But I digress.. What I am trying to say that the kuntilanak portrayed in this film is different than the ones told in the folklore. This kuntilanak means business, it goes around killing everyone on sight.

The scenery is spooky, with dark and shoddy dormitory. Coupled with music, it made the whole situation horrifying.

However, I didn't like the main actor's acting at all. C'mon dude, improvise your acting! Overall, this is a very good horror flick, probably the best to come out from Indonesia thus far in the recent years.

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8 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

Summary: Don't be afraid, this Kuntilanak isn't scary!

3/10
Author: Kabank from Indonesia
22 February 2007

I watched Kuntilanak on VCD at my house. My friend brought it and I was really curious what would be it looked like. Well, I must say the building is pretty scary but it's dissonant for girl's hostel. We all know girls won't living in dusty place, fearful, dirty and far away from the the town especially for rich girls. It's ridiculous, isn't? About the main character, Samantha(Julie Estelle), I didn't see a character inside her. Sometimes, she was weak, sissy, and need for help. The other times, she was strong, spitfire, and self-supporting. And Agung(Evan Sanders) really played mess, not good, not good! There are so many weakness in Kuntilanak. There is no surprise in the end of the movie, the tragedy of the death in this movie is really boring, the setting places are too narrow, the conversations are too stiff, and many more. Please, don't even try to make a horror movie with small budget. But, the huge mistake is about the style of the movie. The characters died one by one in a horror movie is an old school, out of date. For Rijal Mantovani, you need to be more creative to find fresh ideas for horror movie. Trust me, Wes Craven is one of the old school student. And look at him, He is bankrupt. I'm sorry to give rating 3/10 for this one!

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