Editor’s note: There are some spoilers below. But really, do you care?
As I suspected, “Mirrors” is another American remake of an Asian, in this case, Korean, horror film. And as in the case of many of the other remakes of Korean or Japanese horror films, this just doesn’t feel right somehow. Not to say that I ever saw the original Korean version of this, but the script here just feels off.
Kiefer Sutherland, in a role that can only be described as some pocket money in between seasons of “24”, plays an ex-detective, Ben something, who takes a job as a night watchman at a big New York department store that was burned in a huge fire. The reason for that need is kinda flimsy as it is, but whatever. Ben starts seeing strange and eerie things in the strangely clean mirrors in the store. Eventually people start dying because their reflections in any mirror do horrible things to themselves and whatever they do happens to the people on this side of the glass. This all happens with varying degrees of genuine creepiness, outright violence and gore, and absurd, unintended humor. There are a couple good scares, but they’re cheap shots that have no purpose.
There are various inexplicable things in this movie. How is it that people can be affected by ANY mirror? Why does this movie turn into Ben vs. a crazy she-demon a la Evil Dead Two? Why does every haunted department store have to be built on the same place as an old sanitarium where an allegedly schizophrenic girl was forced to be strapped to a chair surrounded by mirrors so she had to be faced with her own image but then turned out she was possessed by a demon that left her body and went into the mirrors? Wow. I feel woozy.
Hey, we all know Kiefer has had a tough year. He gives all he can to this script, for the most part. But so what if he couldn’t make gold out of every scene? Not his fault. The script is just rather trite in places. Ben isn’t a detective anymore because he had to shoot someone. It messed him up. He started drinking and that messed up his marriage and kids. Sound familiar? His wife, by the way, is an adequate but really hot actress who’s name I don’t remember. Don’t lose sleep over it. I won’t.
This is, of course, why his wife doesn’t believe him when he says that reflections in mirrors are making people kill themselves. Yeah…THAT’S why she doesn’t believe him; because he used to drink and is now on some strong medication to keep him from drinking. I’m pretty sure if one of my friends came up to me and said he was seeing shit like that in mirrors, I’d think he was off his nut whether he was drunk, on drugs, or not. So why make him struggle with chemical co-dependency? I don’t know.
This movie really feels like a B or C (D?) movie that someone threw a bunch of money at. I noticed Kiefer was an executive producer. But still, I won’t ever say a negative thing about him. I happen to think he’s a fine actor and I know for a fact that he’s a Hell of a nice guy. So there.
Other than a few moments of decent effects, and a few genuine creepy moments, this was not a satisfying film, horror or otherwise. They even tried with a twist ending that was only partially explicable.
But I won’t hold it against Kiefer. He’s still aces in my book.
—Neil, your Kiefer-lovin’ movie-goer.
Editor’s note: Geez Neil, why don’t you marry him?