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Revenge of the Pontianak (2019)

90 mins / Horror, Melodrama, Comedy

Directed by: Glenn Goei, Gavin Yap

Language: Malay, English

Cast: Nur Fazura, Hisyam Hamid, Shenty Feliziana, Remy Ishak, Nadia M Din, Tony Eusoff, Wan Hanafi Su, Nam Ron

Plot Synopsis:

1965 - A small village helps Khalid and Siti prepare for their wedding day. Soon after, a great darkness falls upon the village as a string of horrific deaths and supernatural happenings create widespread fear and paranoia amongst the villagers. The events force a confession from Khalid to the murder of a girl he made pregnant years before, now believed to have returned as a Pontianak. To kill this vengeful vampire, he rallies all the men of the village and sets out into the jungle to hunt her down. But can the village stop her?

Critical Analysis:

Revenge of the Pontianak achieves aesthetic balance in its cinematography, artfully interlacing peaceful establishing shots of scenic nature with suspenseful narratives that thrills and seduces the audience with the film's pacing and experimental form.

Excellent acting from the cast, but more so from the women on the team. Khalid does a good job in portraying a strong male lead who breaks down under the pressure of his own pretence and need to uphold masculinity and patriarchy. film's main drive is not so much the gore fear factor in the form of gore, but in the central theme of familial love and kinship that ties the film together eventually.

Transitions between scenes reflect thoughtfulness and deliberate continuity despite it being a horror genre that often counts on jump scares and quick edits. Subversion of horror conventions make the film a treat for those expecting the expected. Narrative was tied in conveying the sense of community and kampung spirit where the individual's actions impact more than the self, but results in dire consequences that affect others. Yet, the film breaks away from the notion that traditions and lineage hold ultimate power, making this film a progressive one for its age.

Watch this if: You want a feminist take on the legend of a woman scorned.

Find it on: Netflix

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