Set in the past, in which a family gets a visit from a strange little girl with a frightening prediction.
Starring: Farah Ahmad, Mhia Farhana, and Harith Haziq
Directed by: Emir Ezwan
Written by: Nazri M. Annuar, Emir Ezwan, and Amir Hafizi
A New York Asian Film Festival Review
Honestly, I can’t say I have watched many horror movies out of Malaysia. However, in the few I’ve seen I can say they don’t mess around. I mean this story opens with a young girl covered in blood doing something very mysterious! Their stories seem to involve family in one way or another, and can get extremely dark and creepy. That’s certainly a good place to start describing ROH (Soul).
This movie features a small family unit, Mak, the mother (Farah Ahmad), and her young children, Along (Mhia Farhana) and Angah (Harith). The aforementioned young girl follows her kids home one day, and eventually leaves them with a deadly message. They have no where to run to, and hide. The only ones out in the forest near them are a strange man, who appears to be looking for something, and a woman, who is sure evil is lurking nearby. And she’s correct because the evil in the forest is just getting started.
Early on, the movie introduces the audience to this family. The audience will get to spend some time with the kids, and see that they’re like typical kids questioning their mom about everything. She tells them a creepy tale about the forest, which will leave the audience to wonder if that’s what’s going on here. She didn’t scare them enough because something truly evil is coming their way.
The evil in this movie has no heart. Everyone is fair game for death, and some of them will be brutal. Blood will be spilled in some shocking ways. The movie slowly gets darker and darker as this evil takes over. It will leave the audience and the characters guessing at who they can trust, and what’s really happening.
So yes, ROH definitely fits everything I expect from another eerie Malaysian horror film. It gives the audience a family that loves each other, and is easy to like. It introduces something mysterious that becomes more deadly as time passes. Of course they keep that secret well hidden, and instead is busy ripping out the audience’s souls with some savage deaths. With that, I give it 3 pools of blood, and hope to see more Malaysian horror in the future.
More info about this film at: www.nyaff.org/nyaff20/films/soul