Written By: JR
Edited By: Grave Reviews Staff
Director: Banjong Pisanthanakun and Parkpoom Wongpoom
Producer: Paiboon Damrongchaitham, Boosaba Daorueng Pinn et. al.
Screenwriter: Aummaraporn Phandintong, Banjong Pisanthanakun, et. al.
Date of release: March 29, 2007
Marsha Wattanapanich as Pim / Ploy
Vittaya Wasukraipaisan as Vee
Rachanu Boonchuduang as Pim & Ploy’s Mother
Hatairat Egereff as Pim (15 yrs. old)
Rutairat Egereff as Ploy (15 yrs. old)
Namo Tongkumnerd as Vee (15 yrs. old)
Chutikan Vimuktanada as Pim (7 yrs. old)
Chayakan Vimuktanada as Ploy (7 yrs. old)
Rating = 3/5 Graves
***May contain some spoilers***
Pim (Marsha Wattanapanich) flies back to her hometown together with her boyfriend and childhood lover, Vee, after being informed that her mother is hospitalized. While staying in the house where she was raised, Pim is haunted by apparitions of Ploy, her Siamese twin who died during the separation surgery they have undergone when they were teenagers. Vee refers Pim to a psychologist to help her overcome the trauma. However, when Pim’s mother faintly recovers, she discloses a dark secret about the twins that bewilders Vee to rethink about the one he is with all this time.
The Gore Factor
Alone (2007) does not shy away from disturbing scenes, especially since the protagonist is a psychopath in the making. The jump scares deluge in staccato notes, successively orchestrating perturbation. As a tease, blood begins to pour from the large keloid on the surviving twin’s stomach and gathers into a puddle at her feet during her first hallucination.
There are also scenes featuring intricate animal violence such as when a dog is brutally run over and his corpse is shown for a few seconds afterward. After that, a replacement dog of the same breed has been beheaded and thrown at Vee’s lap. Moreover, young Ploy squeezes her pet hamster to death while overwhelmed with jealousy. The ruckus finds its roots from the sibling rivalry between Pim and Ploy which incrementally swells to extremities.
The Grave Review
As a succeeding film, Alone takes the pressure to match the reputation of the director’s hit film, Shutter. By using the trope of twins, the film probes the rhetoric of othering. It also delivers an arrested coming-of-age story line, depicting the adolescent angst of conjoined twins as difficult and suffocating, especially when each of the twins starts to assert their identity and desires. The director was able to take a cliché plot and use unconventional ways to tell the story.
The film uses quintessential objects to illustrate the bond formed between the twins leading up to the conclusion of the film. At the prologue, a reversible queen card from a friend’s fortune telling act forecasts a wrestle for dominance that will later take a toll on Ploy. It is a great example of the directors’ ability to give initial thoughts to the viewers while reserving a greater payoff for the metaphor. These objects also portray an underlying message not only about the twins, but also about disfigurations and disabilities.
The first half of the movie is filled with unapologetic jump scares. There is enough gap and involvement to purge the audience off their chair whenever there is a ghost suddenly lurking. However, the scariest part is not achieved through amplified scare, but rather, in serenity. Marsha Wattanapanich does a good job at playing both Pim and Ploy in this way. For example, when Pim is walking by the shoreline, she looks back to find her twin speaking to her friend, Vee, leaving the viewers unsure of what is real and what is not. As such, Wattanapanich flawlessly pull off the two personas. Moreover, the filmmakers have proven their potential to elevate the height of fright and it makes viewers crave for more silent chillers than outright scares.
Alone (2007) has cemented a notoriety of its own, other than Shutter. The plot is simple and predictable, yet it is executed with finesse. It blends the past and the present with an augmented underscore of guilt and grudge, like a two-faced facade full of arcs.
For the foregoing reasons, Grave Reviews gives Alone (2007) three graves out of five graves.
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