Man Versus Monster: Is there a difference?

The title speaks for the whole movie itself: a dead girl. However, contrary to my initial inference that this movie is about a dead girl murdered or raped then goes back to the world to haunt her killers, it actually is weirder and gorier than what I previously thought.  The movie basically tells the story of a pair of tightly-knitted friends, Ricky and JT, who discovers a body of a dead girl in a secluded room of the underground tunnels of an abandoned hospital.

The sight of a corpse is already a horrifying notion for the regular viewer. However, what is truly mystifying is how this girl actually breathes even if she is in a plastic body bag, a familiar sight becoming unfamiliar to us. Seeing this, I personally did not know what to expect and several scenarios went gushing into my mind, questions like “Is there a freak who will turn JT and Ricky like the dead girl?”, “Will the dead girl actually eat them on the spot?”, and “how did the dead girl arrive there in the first place?”

As the movie progressed, more questions surfaced but few were really answered.  First, JT confirms that the girl is actually relatively immortal after he tried to kill her three times. The audience, like me, should have been shocked at how JT shot the girl and how she did not die afterwards. However, as JT turned the dead girl into a sex machine, nothing really more becomes clear – except for the fact that there is this dead girl who cannot die, who certainly bites and smells like a dog, and who can actually transmit her “disease” to another person by simply biting.

Knowing these, the movie turns out not to be the usual horror similar to what conventional Asian or American horror films will offer us. This movie delves more into the realms of weird more than our traditional thought of “horror” – although some special and stage effects would lead us to think otherwise. While I turn out to dislike the movie more because of the multitude of questions it left unanswered (which can be a bane rather than a boon for this instance), I would like to focus on the characters themselves.

I do not personally see the dead girl as the monster. What is important to note is how JT and his companions are shown as the true horror monsters of the movie and the dead girl, more than anything else, is actually the victim of rape and desire. However, it is important to put ourselves into the shoes of both Ricky and JT before judging on who is the true monster and the hero.

While we can see how JT, and eventually Ricky, as “demons” in their own ways, most of us will be hypocrites to judge them. We probably do not see it, but once we have placed ourselves in their shoes, regardless if you are a girl or a boy, we most probably have thought of probably doing the same, even if the thought remains just in the realms of imagination. Imagine that the girl or boy of your dreams is in the same situation as the dead girl. While we may have no thoughts of eventually raping him/her, we may have thought of at least taking advantage of the situation, from probably just staring excessively to the extreme thought of JT’s actions, especially knowing that no one else knows and that no one else is looking.

I am inclined to believe that, more than just objectification, this movie tackles the issues on morality, ethics, and desires.  The ultimate question that one should ask from the movie is this: knowing that you can achieve your deepest and most pleasurable desires, will you do what you want to do or choose to do what is morally right even if no one else will know and even care? These were the dilemmas that JT and Ricky faced and we know how the two of them tried to traverse different paths.

However, the true horror, for me, is how some of us will probably choose the former, JT’s choice, to fit our own desires. From the movie, we are actually faced with the dilemma if man is naturally good or is he naturally a monster/animal inside, just like what we can see in the seemingly contrasting actions of JT and Ricky. In the end, while the movie shows that there is still hope in man in the initial actions of Ricky, it also offers us the idea that man, himself, is the monster that should be feared – for he can do things far worse than what the monsters we create are capable of doing.

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