Stare (aka Shiraisan) is a Japanese horror movie. It’s from the same gene pool as The Ring and any other folklore curse movie you might know. Is this a movie inspired by the urban legend, Momo? Read on to find out and judge for yourself. If you watch this movie, you’ll definitely be reminded of any picture you’ve ever seen of the notorious Momo.
The world premiere for the film hit audiences at Fantasia Festival 2019 on July 17th. Stare could remind you that in order to overcome your worst fears, you just might have to face them!
Director, screenwriter, and author Hirotaka Adachi wants you to be afraid. The story told within this 98-minute run-time might just cause you to panic the next time you hear a bell chime. The international teaser trailer below will be just the thing for fans of Ringu (1998), Candyman (1992), or even Head Count (2019.) All these films feature a curse that’s passed on and knocks people down like irrelevant flies.
Stop and Stare at a Japanese Horror Movie
The official release for the film is January 10, 2020. You’re just going to have to trust me when I say this is a quirky entry to the horror genre that has enough appeal to satisfy most. In fact, when Shirai-san is first described I couldn’t help but think of the viral sensation Momo. Could Shiraisan be a relative? Perhaps an evil twin?
Each person in the story discovers their fate if they were unfortunate enough to hear Shiraisan’s name. They all see the lights flicker. Then a woman is seen off in the distance. So terrified of this encroaching figure their eyes explode.
Shiraisan is described as someone with abnormally large eyes. But that’s not enough of a connection to link a film to a viral figure like Momo, I hear you saying… Well, later in the film she’s referred to as someone who networks like a social media app. Plus, the fact if Momo was given legs instead of her bird body, she could well pass for her if you were drunk.
Japanese Horror Movies 2019
- RELATED: Sadako, another Japanese horror movie.
- READ & BE AFRAID: Have you seen Head Count 2019?
- INDONESIAN HORROR 2019: Impetigore by Joko Anwar is on Shudder.
- AND FINALLY, NOT JAPANESE BUT ANIMATION FROM THE USA: To Your Last Death / Death to 2020
Does Everyone Stare
The story of this new Japanese movie sets out with a bunch of deaths where autopsy results show a cardiac arrest— eyes are rupturing left-right and center. In line with many investigative fallacies of complete stupidity, any concerns are waved away. It’s not until a journalist arrives to look into the strange occurrences, the scenario being touted; is a big fat ‘no-way.’
I loved the way the narrative potters along, spitting out breadcrumbs to follow. You don’t get the whole story until halfway through. This type of tale is a fairly well-worn path but Adachi’s writing is solid enough to string you along. There’s even a small love story thrown in for good measure and it’s done so eloquently that I enjoyed it.
I’m certain this film was made on the whiff of an oily rag but the restraint and offscreen splatter are done well. Not all of it is off-screen though and there was one great splash for cash where there are indeed some exploding eyes. It’s worth the wait too and despite the film’s few shortfalls with what feels like a lack of fluidity, this is certainly one to look out for.
Don’t worry, I’ll remind you when the release of this new J-horror arrives. So far it’s only had a release in Japan from January 2020.
I give Stare
3 finger puppets make telling ghost stories great again out of 5