Mirrors Movie Review
Jack Bauer, bored of taking on terrorists and assassins, has shifted his focus to a much more dangerous target: mirrors. Yes, mirrors. In the Alexandre Aja movie Mirrors, Kiefer Sutherland stars as a security guard who begins to believe that the mirrors in the abandoned department store that he patrols are possessed with a demonic force that can kill at will.
Aja, the guy behind such gore fests as High Tension and The Hills Have Eyes, has set the bar pretty high. While not everyone loves his films, no one can argue that his two most well known pictures are disturbing and thrilling. That being said, I had relatively high hopes for Mirrors. Unfortunately, Mirrors is also based on a Korean movie, which means that it falls into the dried-up subgenre of Asian horror movie adaptations. That, in the least, is disturbing in its own right.
Thankfully, Aja has created a film that supercedes the subgenre, if only slightly. The movie does follow the pretty typical formula: a guy gets a new job, starts seeing weird things, continues to work there, begins to believe that something is truly wrong and eventually discovers that a creepy little girl may have something to do with it. Aside from that, Aja tries his best to make us forget about the thin plot - and succeeds off and on.
I didn't love Mirrors. The first half is so-so, as there are some plot holes, sketchy moments and so on and so forth. It's never explained to a believable level why an abandoned department store that is halfway burned to the ground needs to be patrolled on an hourly basis, or why Sutherland, who lost his job as a police detective, needs to work a night job when he could just as easily land a normal gig during the day. Of course, there's always the problem that even if you think you're crazy, why the hell would you go back to a job when you see dead people in the mirrors? Furthermore, Sutherland isn't anything special; at least Paula Patton and her cleavage make up for his shortcomings.
Nevertheless, if you can look beyond its flaws, Mirrors is pretty scary. The use of mirrors has always been an easy approach for directors to scare the living daylights out of their audiences, and Aja has made a movie made of nothing but mirrors. There are quite a few scary moments and several of those will make you jump. As far as gore goes, the movie pales in comparison to Aja's other films, but there are still some decent neck-gouging, jaw-splitting death scenes.
The ending, as far as horror movies go, is also quite decent.
Mirrors isn't a great movie and it isn't for everyone, but as far as Asian remakes go, it's pretty good.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.