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Infection (DVD) (Hong Kong Version) DVD Region 3

Sato Koichi (Actor) | Hoshino Mari (Actor) | Sano Shiro (Actor) | Minami Kaho
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Infection (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)
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All Editions Rating: Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10 (1)

YesAsia Editorial Description

Directed by Ochiai Masayuki, Infection, a.k.a. Kansen, is a supernatural sci-fi thriller produced by J-horror champion Ichise Takashige, the man behind such films as Ju-on, Ring, and Sakebi. Ochiai previously directed the murder suspense film Hynopsis and sci-fi horror Parasite Eve before taking on Infection in 2004, and the film reflects his talent for genre blending and sharp visuals.

Starring Sano Shiro, Sato Koichi, and Takashima Masanobu, this chilling film is set in a run-down, under-funded, dimly lit hospital where health care has gone to the pits. Creepy, tired, and incompetent, the doctors and nurses neglect patients and practice medicine carelessly. When their actions lead to the death of a patient, the hospital decides to cover up the incident. Shortly afterwards, a man with a strange, green-oozing disease shows up. He mysteriously disappears, leaving behind his sickness and soon the infection begins to spread, afflicting the staff members one by one.

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Technical Information

Product Title: Infection (DVD) (Hong Kong Version) 感染 (DVD) (香港版) 感染 (DVD) (香港版) 感染 (DVD) (香港版) Infection (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)
Artist Name(s): Sato Koichi (Actor) | Hoshino Mari (Actor) | Sano Shiro (Actor) | Minami Kaho | Takashima Masanobu | Hata Michiko | Maki Yoko 佐藤浩市 (Actor) | 星野真里 (Actor) | 佐野史郎 (Actor) | 南果步 | 高嶋政伸 | 羽田 美智子 | 真木陽子 佐藤浩市 (Actor) | 星野真里 (Actor) | 佐野史郎 (Actor) | 南果步 | 高嶋政伸 | 羽田 美智子 | 真木阳子 佐藤浩市 (Actor) | 星野真理 (Actor) | 佐野史郎 (Actor) | 南果歩 | 高嶋政伸 | 羽田美智子 | 真木よう子 Sato Koichi (Actor) | Hoshino Mari (Actor) | Sano Shiro (Actor) | Minami Kaho | Takashima Masanobu | Hata Michiko | Maki Yoko
Director: Ochiai Masayuki | Ochiai Masayuki Ochiai Masayuki | Ochiai Masayuki Ochiai Masayuki | Ochiai Masayuki 落合正幸 | Ochiai Masayuki Ochiai Masayuki | Ochiai Masayuki
Release Date: 2007-07-13
Language: Japanese
Subtitles: English, Traditional Chinese
Country of Origin: Japan
Picture Format: NTSC What is it?
Aspect Ratio: 1.78 : 1
Widescreen Anamorphic: Yes
Sound Information: Dolby Digital
Disc Format(s): DVD, DVD-5
Region Code: 3 - South East Asia (including Hong Kong, S. Korea and Taiwan) What is it?
Rating: IIB
Duration: 96 (mins)
Publisher: Asia Video (HK)
Package Weight: 120 (g)
Shipment Unit: 1 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1004920485

Product Information

* Screen Format: 16:9 Anamorphic Widescreen
* Sound mix: Dolby Digital
* DVD Type: DVD-5

導演︰落合正幸
Director: Masayuki Ochiai

郊外一間老舊醫院因資金問題而經營困難,藥物、設備、人手嚴重不足,醫生護士疲憊不已,病人徘徊死亡邊緣。昏暗燈光,破舊的病床,整間醫院都陰霾瀰漫,一片愁雲慘霧,了無生氣。更甚的是,一個病人因醫療失誤而死,令醫院雪上加霜。外科醫生秋葉清一和內科醫生魚住晴哉等人為求自保,決定隱瞞事實真相。

另一方面,一位內臟潰爛的病人被送到醫院治療,醫生都未見過這樣病例。魚住因上次失誤而失去信心,不敢接收這個病人,相反另一醫生赤井就認為這是一個讓醫院翻身機會,如果醫院能研究出治療的方法,必定能聲名大噪,轉危為機。討論良久,醫生終於決定替病人治療,但那個病人竟然無聲無色消失,留下的只有他身上的病毒﹗病毒開始蔓延,散播每一個角落,醫院成為地獄之門……

An old, dilapidated hospital is barely able to keep its doors open to the public due to a constant lack of adequate medicine, facilities, and staff. The hospital is riddled with the agony and suffering of countless patients and the strain on the doctors and nurses has reached a critical limit. A doctor's negligence causes a patient to die and the panicked hospital staff decides to cover up the fatal mistake. Paramedics bring a new patient into the hospital who has been stricken with a virus so horrible an revolting that his internal organs have mysteriously disintegrated. The doctors attempt to contain the virus, but the ill patient escapes through the ventilation system ensuring that everyone inside the doomed hospital will have to fight for their lives from this horrifying epidemic.
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YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features

Professional Review of "Infection (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)"

September 20, 2007

Somewhere in Japan is a hospital that you REALLY do not want to be a patient in. Or a doctor. Or a nurse.

Faced with bankruptcy the place is dangerously low on supplies and staff. The director is unavailable for questions, suppliers do not want to sell them goods anymore because of bad credit, nurses work double shifts while their wages aren't being paid and the few remaining doctors are worn eggshell thin. In short: everyone would rather leave but their patients can't be abandoned or moved. A recipe for disaster, it's not long before a lethal mistake happens and the hospital suddenly has an untimely dead patient extra. Faced with disgrace and possible future unemployment, the witnesses face an ethic dilemma: report what really happened and suffer the consequences, or cover it up. Seeing as how this particular patient never received any visitors they choose the latter, but the shared secret sets everyone even more on edge than they are already.

And at that exact moment they are faced with a new emergency: against doctor Akiba's wishes a new patient who suffers from an incredibly aggressive infection is brought in. The man is being eaten alive by gangrene, basically dissolving into green goo. Even though the hospital does not have the means to possibly help this man, doctor Akai wants to research the patient because the discovery and description of this new spectacular disease could mean fame and fortune for all of them. But then the impossible happens: even though the dying patient has almost no muscle tissue left and inner organs have already liquefied, he disappears. Trails of eh… leftovers… point towards him having crawled into the building's maze of ventilation shafts. Everyone starts searching for him but one by one contaminated members of the staff seem to be seeing ghosts, and start to drip…

Can they stop the infection before they all LITERALLY fall apart?

The Movie
If Infection tries to meld hospital drama with typical J-horror, it's not entirely successful. For one thing, it's not really that scary. Sure, you wouldn't want to switch places with any of the main characters, but to be honest that's not really a stretch with bad hospitals. The first half of the movie is actually more creepy than scary, which works very well. One of the things I've grown to hate about horror movies are the unearned shocks. I mean, anyone can suddenly yell "WAAAA" in my face and yes I will jump, but do not expect me to tell you that you are the brilliant new face of horror. And this goes especially for the overused "fake scare" which seems to be so popular in American horror. So I was very pleased to note these fake shocks by their absence. In their place are a couple of cleverly placed fake "creeps". It's ingeniously messing with your perception about what you expect from horror, and I really like that.

Unfortunately, by the time the mystery patient disappears the movie loses all of its carefully built credibility. The moment the doctors say "This isn't possible!" you think exactly the same thing. The disease itself is already pretty outlandish, but now we suddenly get an alien-like monsterhunt on top of that, with the doctors running after "The Incredible Melting Patient"? And it certainly doesn't help that my hated fake scares start making an appearance during the search.

This is also the point where you stop going along with the main characters. Every single person NOT hitting the alarm button at that time fully deserves what's coming to them. And a note: self-reference doesn't solve everything, it just makes me aware that writer/director Masayuki Ochiai knows the story is getting a bit bumpy. "This isn't possible" indeed.

Thankfully Infection pulls itself partly together again, and turns out to be a clever horror story about perception. It doesn't get completely off the hook, but it manages to salvage a lot of the damage. Still, you're left with a bit of a schizophrenic picture. While the plot seems to be more in line with an epidemic thriller than with long-haired female ghosts, part of the setup points in another direction. Creepy patients seem to be seeing ghosts from the start and the picture seems to steer the viewer in two directions. On the one hand it's saying "look what a bad hospital, and look how realistic it all seems", while on the other hand it says "look, scary things are going to happen, you can expect Sadako to arrive anytime!". The disease and the perception angle are supposed to tie this all together, but it doesn't quite jell as well as I think Ochiai wanted.

Picturewise it looks splendid though. Masayuki Ochiai obviously knows his way around a camera and all is carefully composited to the point of art. He also plays with the colors a bit, and by changing the accents ever so gently he nudges the look of the film from realism to creepy to nightmarish. It reaches the point where you expect a city sign saying "Silent Hill" to appear. This is not his first SF-horror hospital movie (he also directed the Parasite Eve live action film) so maybe this was familiar territory, but it looks remarkably confident. I was really surprised to learn that this was a fairly low-budget affair, because it looks anything but cheap. There aren't any big moneyshots special effects-wise but what was on display for make-up effects looked fine. Green goop apparently doesn't cost much…

As for acting, everyone here turns in a good performance although standouts would be Kôichi Satô as doctor Akiba, who is the only one who manages to slightly cling to credibility during the film's low-point, and Kaho Minami as the stressed head nurse who is vital as the voice of reason during the cover-up.

Conclusion
Infection is certainly interesting and looks good, but it stumbles mightily around the halfway point and never really recovers. Anyone expecting a scary Asian hospital thrill ride, I would rather point to the Korean 5-part TV drama Coma. That doesn't mean Infection is a complete failure though, and I will be on the lookout for Masayuki Ochiai's future projects as the man is obviously talented. According to IMDB his current job is the US-remake of the Thai-horror movie Shutter, so… fingers crossed I'd say.

The DVD
This is the brand new region 3 Hong Kong DVD-release of Infection, and it is completely bare-bones. Puzzling as this late arrival is, it certainly has a brilliant picture. It's one thing if it looks splendid on my television, but it's another thing if it looks fine on my computer as well when I take screenshots! Image-quality is nigh-on perfect for SD, maybe the best I've seen this year.

Soundwise there is a decent Japanese Dolby stereo soundtrack, and that's it. Huh? No Dolby 5.1, DTS, let alone DTS-ES 6.1? Odd, because Hong Kong normally seems to be very fond of full bit-rate soundtracks, and with all those creepy echoing hospital corridors…

Barebones is barebones: no extras whatsoever. As consolation it's very cheap, the subtitles are excellent and the three menus are also completely English-friendly. The cover is also nice: if ever they make a live-action "PacMan" movie, that's the design they should use for the blue ghosts.

by Aardvark - Twitchfilm.net

This original content has been created by or licensed to YesAsia.com, and cannot be copied or republished in any medium without the express written permission of YesAsia.com.

Customer Review of "Infection (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)"

Average Customer Rating for All Editions of this Product: Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10 (1)

CJ
See all my reviews


July 24, 2006

This customer review refers to Infection (US Version)
Scary? Suspensful? I think not Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
I saw the Japanese version of this movie, and I must say it was pretty interesting. I sorta got lost towards the end, though. This movie is in no way scary or suspensful to me, but I did enjoy the storyboard. The infection was kinda gross and very fictional, but in a way un-original. I enjoyed it for the most part.
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