SALEM HORROR FEST: Koreatown Ghost Story (2021)

Directed and written by Minsun Park and Teddy Tenenbaum, Koreatown Ghost Story starts as what feels like a comedy, with Hannah (Lyrica Okano, Nico Minoru from the Marvel series Runaways) getting acupuncture from Mrs. Moon (Margaret Cho, who executive produced this movie). That’s because Mrs. Moon is checking her teeth, commenting on her weight and generally asking some odd questions.

That’s because she wants Hannah to marry her dead son Edward (Brandon Halvorsen) from beyond the grave so that she has done right by him before she dies.  The needles inside Hannah have shut down her ability to move and even cause her to openly weep at times.

Then, the movie completes its move from farce to terror, as whatever Mrs. Moon has made is now in our existence and ready to find its bride. As for our heroine, she wants out so badly that she’s willing to tear the skin off her ring finger to lose the chains that have bound her. But that shambling mass of flesh coming up the steps covered in cupping cups may have something to say about that. After all, their parents promised Hannah to Edward years before he lived and died.

Cho is absolutely perfect in this, as is Okano, whose face is tightly held by the acupuncture table. She acts a good stretch of this film paralyzed, which limits movement but really shows off her range. This is one of the best shorts I’ve seen in awhile and I urge you to track it down.

Koreatown Ghost Story is now playing Salem Horror Fest and you can watch this short and all of the features with their virtual pass now until the end of October.

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