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</script></div>{/googleAds}We really don't have anyone to blame but ourselves when it comes to the output Hollywood's decision makers deliver these days. Many filmmakers have been lamenting the corporatization of the land of dreams since the 70's. In Horror, like many popular genres nowadays, the bulk of what's on offer seems to fall largely into two categories: sequel or remake. If a hit - or sometimes even a moderate money-spinner comes Hollywood's way, then you can bet vital parts of your person there'll be more of them. For those who invest millions of dollars, its a safer bet than some unproven idea. Brand name recognition will win out every time over the riskier support of an ‘unproven entity'. So as long as we hand over our hard-earned dollar for the next sequel, reboot/remake/re-cashing, they are going to fill our screens both large and small with exactly that.

Case in point: the third instalment on the American ‘Grudge' series (let's not even go into the originals). This reviewer has never liked the concept of this series to begin with. It came hot on the heals of one of the first Americanized Japanese horror successes (‘The Ring'). Telling the story of a murdered wife and son... and cat, haunting the place of there demise, and unleashing bloody vengeance. Except, they unleash it on anyone. Why? Well, this is explained with a vague tagline that says something like: When someone dies in a powerful rage, a curse is born. Those that cross its path die and the curse is reborn over and over in an endless chain of horror. There's logic for ya...

the Grudge 3I don't think anyone expects too much out of their horror stories. A character to follow, to relate to, a story that makes some kind of sense and doesn't cheat their audience, and a few frights is all it would take to please to say ‘that was good'. ‘The Grudge 3', like the two films it follows, offers none of this. What it does do is highlight what a sloppy, illogical mess can be produced and passed off as entertainment these days because it has a familiar title.

Usually a film can be summarized in a brief synopsis, telling you who's story it is and what we follow. This film doesn't know who it's suppose to be following. Without spoiling what happens for those who care to watch, this one, like ‘Grudge 2', segments off into different locales of the world to try and combine tendrils of a story toward the end. The film never follows one character's perspective, nor a single point of view, then relies solely on the same carnival tricks used in the last two (you can only yell ‘boo' the same way so many times before it loses effect, people), and after three movies no one, not even a blood relation of the spooks, can explain why the Hell a murdered wife and her son feel the need to brutally murder innocent people. The whole title ‘Grudge', if I remember my english lessons correctly, implies ill feeling toward someone you KNOW. Since their murderer offed himself after he offed them in the first place, WHY in the name of frontal lobotomies are these two angry at folk they've never met? Because they found a chick (now a new chick) who looks spooky in white paint and can walk like an epileptic lizard, and that apparently is scary, and that is what people are paying to be entertained by. It has nothing to do with story, ‘cause this doesn't even come close to passing off as one.

Does is look any good? For a direct-to-DVD budget, the production design and look of the film is first rate (Bulgarian carpenters must work cheap). The actors, including for you trekkies Mirina Sirtis, don't have much to work with and predictably come off one note and uninteresting. For those impressed by the two actors that inhabited the spooky duo of the ‘Grudge' series, let it be known their replacements suitably fill their shoes without it being jarring. The score relies on jumpy noises to tell you you're meant to be scared now (a common thing nowadays, not limited to this series).

There is a surprise for those who like the series at the end, but since this reviewer has never bought the so-called logic of this story in the first place, it is no less nonsensical for him. But there you have it... a new element enters ‘The Grudge' for part 4 through 50.

And that is what will happen if this dvd sells a whole bunch. Having checked Rotten Tomatoes and discovered 0 reviews, one can only hope this is an indication of the interest for this new instalment, and that it will die a fast and unheard of death. Otherwise, the new tagline might have to read: When a crappy franchise gets a foothold, and keeps making even a little money, a curse is born. Those charged to review films will die an agonising death, having to sit through one instalment after another, over and over, until people's wallets are sealed for all time to... ‘The Grudge'.

Component Grades
1 Star
1 Star
DVD Experience
1 Star


DVD Details:

Screen Formats: 1.85:1
Subtitles: English; French; Spanish; Closed Captioned
Language and Sound: English: Dolby Digital 5.1 French: Dolby Digital 5.1
Other Features: Color; interactive menus; scene access; deleted scenes; audio commentary; video blogs; "Ghost Hunters" bonus episode.



  • No commentary track


  • Tokyāgöaria" (9:45)
  • The Curse Continues" (5:55)

Trailers: Nothing But the Truth, The Messengers 2: The Scarecrow and Vinyan play automatically when loading the disc, while the menu also includes: What Doesn't Kill You, Boogeyman 3, [REC], Anaconda: Trail of Blood, Against the Dark, The Lodger, Red Sands, Resident Evil: Degeneration, Passengers, "Breaking Bad", Sarah Landon and the Paranormal Hour and FearNet.com.

Number of Discs: 1 with Keepcase Packaging