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A computer engineer is kidnapped and tortured. Since then, his girlfriend senses he's no longer the same person, and becomes convinced that something supernatural is corrupting his soul. The cop assigned to the case is also determined to get to the bottom of the case. The truth is more frightening than either had anticipated...Written by
L.H. Wong <email@example.com>
A combination of Hitchcock suspense and Hong Kong violence best describes Ringo Lam's directing style. This hybrid respresents a difficult task because the film must retain qualities of both genres to succeed. In films such as Full Alert and even Maximum Risk with Jean Claude Van Damme, Lam can create an action joyride with climatic thrills without losing a touch of either genre. This formula fails in Victim. In addition to combining suspense and violence, Lam decides to add the presence of the supernatural. Although Hitchcock has managed excellence with this hybrid, Lam fails because of the consistency of maintaining the unknown throughout the film. In the first half of the film,Lam creates such a spooky environment that we can actually believe there exists a supernatural essence. However, the second half of the film basically abandons this concept. The main character switches from insanity to sanity between scenes in such an awkward manner that Victim loses its credibility in establishing the possibility of ghostly possession. Changing of setting in the second half also causes Victim to lose its supernatural influence. With the exception of the ending, the second half bases itself entirely in the daytime compared to the evening/night for the first half. In fact, the scenes for the nightime setting occured in scary places such as an abandoned hotel and a lonely road/highway. The film's abrupt ending further aggravates the flow of this film. Victim could have been an excellent thriller if Lam maintained the sense of the supernatural by maintaining the consistency of his main character's behavior and a sense of supernatural influence for each scene. Instead, he leaves us with a Hitchcock-wannabe that would not satisfy even the most dedicated thriller fan.
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