If you mange to make it through Seventh Moon without throwing up, congratulations. If you suffer from motion sickness, it’s probably best you don’t even bother watching it. A good story, some chilling moments, good acting and decent make-up are ruined by horrific shaky camera work, constant close-ups and more jump-cuts then a Resident Evil film. Simply put Seventh Moon is nearly unwatchable.
The film stars Amy Smart as Melissa and Tim Chiou as Yul, a newly married couple spending their honeymoon in China. The opening shows the couple enjoying the ‘Hungry Ghost’ Festival and instantly the problems arise. It’s like watching someone’s home movie as the camera shakes around as if the person holding it has severe Parkinson’s disease.
Any hope that this method would change or improve is lost as the couple are driven to the village where Yul’s relatives live. The driver gets lost as night falls, stopping the car and going to ask for directions. An hour later and he has not come back forcing Melissa and Yul to go look for him. They find houses boarded up and animals left outside, hurt just enough to stop them running away.
Freaked out they head back to the car and decide to drive away but they don’t get far, stopping to help an injured man in the road.
It’s then they are attacked by pale and hairless creatures. They manage to fight them off and escape but whatever these things are they don’t give up so easily.
Seventh Moon is based on the Chinese legend that on the full moon of the seventh lunar month, the gates of hell open and the dead can enter the realm of the living. It’s an interesting idea to base a film off and story-wise it holds up. It’s tense and interesting, paced fairly well and has a strong ending. Both Smart and Chiou are good in their roles, a little under-developed but likeable and believable as a couple.
They are good victims/survivors for the monsters who are kept well-hidden enough to not let any flaws with make-up show. They share some similarities in look to the pale creatures from The Descent.
If we were judging it solely on all of this it would get a very high rating,. Unfortunately it’s a mess to watch. Why the decision to film this movie in this style beggars’ belief. Those involved couldn’t have thought it looked good. That style with zoom-ins that are constantly see some scenes being blurry and out of focus and an insane number of jump-cuts makes for a horrid watch. This can’t be stated enough; Seventh Moon is nearly unwatchable because of all this and overshadows the positives sadly.