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Dei yuk dai sup gau tsang (2007)

4.3
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Ratings: 4.3/10 from 192 users  
Reviews: 3 user | 7 critic

A nightmare begins when Rain, a young and beautiful university student, receives an SMS on her mobile phone - "Do you know what the 19th Gate of Hell is?" The same cryptic text message goes... See full synopsis »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Gillian Chung ...
Rain
Vincy Chan ...
Violet (as Wing-yee)
Patrick Tam ...
Dr. Yan
Shaun Tam ...
Inspector Yip
Seli Xian ...
Mandy (as Bonnie Xian)
Man-kwan Lee ...
Eva (as Maggie Lee)
Jones Xu ...
Go Yuen (as Zheng-xi Xu)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Calvin Choi
...
Wendy
David Leong ...
Admin Clerk
Yan Ng ...
Shopkeeper
Jimmy Ga Lok Wong ...
Dr. Man
Michelle Yim ...
Professor
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Storyline

A nightmare begins when Rain, a young and beautiful university student, receives an SMS on her mobile phone - "Do you know what the 19th Gate of Hell is?" The same cryptic text message goes out to all her best friends... See full synopsis »

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based on novel | See All (1) »

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Release Date:

6 September 2007 (Hong Kong)  »

Also Known As:

Di yu di 19 ceng  »

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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User Reviews

 
No need to count to nineteen to figure this one out
17 November 2007 | by See all my reviews

It's a sad thing when you need to recycle the Pang Brothers' Re-Cycle, for that one to begin with wasn't much more than impressive CGI vistas and little in the way of story.

Naraka 19, apparently titled so to make us think it's one of those high-schooler oriented Japanese horror flicks, admittedly has more atmosphere to it than Re-Cycle did, but its visuals don't come close and in terms of story it's just as shallow.

This Gillian Chung vehicle purveys only one major thing: mood. It was shot mostly in Hong Kong's Chinese University campus in the hills overlooking Shatin, and as such is eerie and foreboding in a way. But beyond this and a few instances of excellent cinematography, Naraka 19 (referring to the 19th level of hell) is a pale, clumpy haired afterthought with almost no lasting power.

They also apparently decided to be inspired by Flatliners, since here too characters are pulled into a vicious game where their worst memories come alive and haunt them to a bitter end. Since most of Naraka 19's target audience are too young to remember 1990, this can be overlooked.

But A-Giu's lackluster performance here can't. As college student Rain, she experiences first hand how a demented horror-survival game, based on the wonderful plot device of cell phones, whisks away her friends to some nether realm where they one by one meet with grisly outcomes.

Of course, Rain also gets involved, but the same can't be said of Gillian. Acting-wise, she's probably even less appealing here than in 49 Days.

Patrick Tam makes an appearance as Dr. Yan, a university shrink that's either trying to help the girls or quite the contrary. Also into the mix are thrown cop Inspector Yip (Shaun Tam, who's the best among all performers here) and Bonnie Xian as Rain's friend Mandy. She's also pretty decent, but her fear of monkeys does grate after a while.

A few harsh words must be uttered regarding the production's decision to go with Nokia as sponsors. Forget the product placement, we're cool with that, but cell phones as the main engine for a story? Isn't that so 2001? And the exaggerated clicking sounds whenever a phone gets picked up or used are just too over the top.

So the basic premise of fears coming to life and biting people in the posterior doesn't cut it, what else? Well in a proper B movie the women would be hot and get a bit naked, but of course this doesn't happen in HK movies. Effects and graphics? Some of them are OK, but nothing particularly artful or memorable ever transpires, we're sad to report. The imagery is kind of generic, even though there's a story arc about European cultists and lunatic-fringe artisans that doesn't get fully explored. Even a cameo by Twin Charlene doesn't help much.

Naraka 19 is by no means a horrible film. It has virtually no merit but nor does it outright suck. If you have nothing better to get you in the mood some late, rainy evening, you could do worse. For more significant product from director Lai, check out sentimental The Floating Landscape.


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