Director: Raymond Yip
Notable Cast: Ruby Lin, Tony Yang, Simon Yam, Huang Lei, Jing Gangshan, Zhang Zifeng, Li Jing, He Yunwei
Director Raymond Yip has made his name in the last handful of years with a series of mid-budget horror films that have generated some serious box office bank in China. However, until Phantom of the Theatre, none of his films have made it over to the US for us genre fans. In a way, it created a hype for this film for me, a hype that had almost no basis and little in the way of realistic expectations. All I knew about Phantom of the Theatre was that it was a haunted theater movie directed by a guy who was making a decent sized splash with his last few horror films. It’s unfortunate that I found myself utterly underwhelmed with the film. Perhaps my own hype for the film set me up for failure, as the film itself has some very awesome elements, but it’s also a film that casts aside its horror elements by the second act and loses a lot of the more entertaining pieces in favor of a more dramatic and predictable approach. There are things to like about Phantom of the Theatre, but it also misses out on so many great opportunities.