Horrorible Review: “Rigor Mortis”

Enjoy this Monday with Mildred!

Rigor Mortis movie poster

Rigor Mortis

Saturday afternoon I kicked back in the bedroom, where people who want to watch horror go in my household, and watched this film from the Hong Kong cinema distributor Well Go USA Entertainment (which Variety calls a “specialty distributor”).  It’s one of several films I’ve seen recently shot in color so washed out it’s nearly black and white, making the splashes of extreme color more of an integral part of the plot. Everything works, from actors to plot to choreography, and I suspect the “specialty distributor” phrase means “made for American viewers who need a three act structure”.

Rigor Mortis is the story of a washed up actor who used to be famous but now he’s carrying all his worldly possessions in one sack and a suitcase into his new digs in the greyest, boxiest, grimmest public housing units on the planet. The gloomy stack of black windows set in washed out gray blocks seem to go up to the heavens, and as soon as he hits the elevator strange things begin to happen. The building may be world class off putting, but it’s got every amenity: a vampire hunter, an evil necromancer, a vampire, evil demented ghosts, a wandering crazy lady and her adorable white haired kid, and the savviest bunch of neighbors a guy could want.

Because I’m a three-act-structure loving American, I enjoyed the film a lot and recommend you check it out.


A friend said, “If I never see “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge” plot again, it’ll be too soon.”  Not having a problem with seeing the same thing over and over (zombie fan, remember?), that didn’t bother me.  I actually thought it was a tad nifty to look back at the beginning when he hangs himself and realize the whole movie was his Final Fantasy Moment.  He saves the world.  There are worse fantasies.

In the end we see his now grown up son claiming his body at the morgue, and unlike for my friend, it made sense to me, knowing that he died at the beginning.  I had assumed, as we were supposed to, that the son and mother had died and that’s what brought him to this low period of his life.  But in the last second we realize that the image of the son being led away by the mother is just that – she takes the kid and goes.  It’s awfully tricky of them to be literal in a dream.



Rigor Mortis Official Trailer 1 (2014) – Hong Kong Horror Movie HD

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