피어썸 – Fearsome
Korea 2021, Lee Sang-Hun
Jo Dong-Hyuk – Seung-Yeon
Baro – Jae-Hyuk
Lim Young-Ju – Jun-Hee
Jang Seok-Hyun – Sung-Woon
The lodging for a band on tour in Chuncheon, Gangwon Province, turns out to be haunted. Band member Jae-Hyuk (Baro, formerly of B1A4) gets bad vibes from the house, he has seen it before somewhere. It soon becomes clear that something isn’t right with the place. Band members see and hear a woman around the house at night. Dynamics within the group are at risk as people are increasingly on edge. As time goes by, the entity in the house torments them more and more. Events at the house are slowly taking their toll on the group, until their very lives are in danger. The whole story is later recounted to a reporter by band leader Seung-Yeon (Jo Dong-Hyuk).
This is apparently based on a true story which was then turned into a screenplay. Don’t ask me what parts actually happened. From what I can see, audiences were not too enthusiastic about the movie. It was also facing competition from other horror productions at the box office. Personally however, Fearsome turned out to be a nice surprise. It doesn’t try to reinvent the wheel, but it’s a solid haunted house story that doesn’t go too over the top with special effects or anything. I found the way the entity tries to lure and trap its victims pretty interesting. Or the part with the protective charm. Paranormal happenings start out subtle enough. Night terrors. A woman’s laughter. Strange visions. Erratic behavior. We get to see the ghost lady quite a bit in the movie’s second half. Admittedly, if I saw a woman hanging upside down from the bathroom ceiling, I would probably take to my heels and find a motel. All in all it might not be the most ahem… fearsome movie ever. But imagine being in that situation.
Overall, I’d say Fearsome is a decent effort that benefits from smart use of one location and a good script. Most of the story shows how the increasingly threatening hauntings, with the band members doing their thing in between. There is good chemistry between the characters, who talk and act like real people. I especially found Jo Dong-Hyuk to be great as the empathic band leader. You could say the whole things has a realistic feel to it, kinda like someone telling you about something inexplicable that happened to them. Which was probably intended. One of the better Korean releases I’ve seen recently, I recommend giving it a chance.
Likeable cast; solid ghost story.
Not that fearsome.