Director(s) – Danny Lee (Legend of the Dragon) and Herman Yau (Kung Fu Angels)
Starring – Anthony Chau-Sang Wong (The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor), Danny Lee, and Emily Kwan (Human Pork Chop)
Release Date – 1993
Rating – 4/5
Tagline – “Based, unfortunately, on real event…”
About two years ago, when I was first brought on to Horror Society, you may recall the kick I went on where I was watching a lot of schlocky Japanese horror flicks full of amazing practical effects and tons of blood and gore. This made me open up more about Asian horror flicks and I checked out the Korean horror flick The Host. I really enjoyed that one as well. So I expanded a little more and checked out a Chinese horror flick and did not like it at all. This stopped me from checking out Asian horror for some time until recently when I was speaking with a friend from over at Bloody Banter and Bazaar.
The two of us worked out a trade for several horror films and among them is the Chinese horror drama The Untold Story. The film was shot in 1993 and was about an actual crime that took place in 1985. This blew my mind and then my friend, Ryan from BBB, informed me that the DVD he traded me for a shitty VHS tape was going on ebay.com for $80. When I received the film in the mail I posted a picture in that group on Facebook and not long after started receiving trade offers on it. This drove me to throwing this one in the ol Xbox to check out. Ryan, you are a damn fool for trading this off for a Goosebumps VHS!
**Spoiler Alert**The film begins with two men fighting over mahjong and one of the men dies at the hands of the other. We then jump forward and that same man is now running a very popular restaurant. The police have been getting letters from a man in Hong Kong asking them to find his brother who went missing some time ago. That man was once the owner ofThe Eight Immortals Restaurant but is now missing. The police start doing some investigating and learn that the place was never sold and that the missing man still owns it.
They question the owner and he claims it was purchased legally. When the police leave he tries to skip town but they catch him and arrest him. They beat the shit out of him trying to get the answers they want to hear but the man is one tough cookie. He does not break so they toss him in prison with the real owner’s other brother. They beat the shit out of him some more and slowly wear him down until he finally confesses to murdering him and his entire family including 4 children and feeding all his victims to his customers. The police think they have him but before they can convict him he kills himself in his cell. **Spoiler Alert**
I would be lying if I said I was not concerned with this film sucking. I had only seen one real Chinese horror flick before I was sent this film and I did not like it at all with the exception of Ebola Zombies. I did enjoy Ebola Zombies but the first Chinese horror film, whose title eludes me, has made me weary of all Chinese horror flicks. With all that being said, once I tossed this one in I was hooked and I have to say that this is one of my favorite horror films to come out of Asia.
The acting in this one is top notch by the entire cast. We have director Danny Lee who also gets in front of the camera and does a great job along with the other officers in the film. The film’s main focus belongs to Anthony Chau-Sang Wong who is fucking intense in his role. The first portion of the film makes you believe he is a monster who kills ruthlessly. The middle portion of the film makes you feel sorry for him and the police brutality. Then the final act once again proves he is a monster and deserves everything he gets. This takes a lot of talent to sway the viewer’s opinion like that.
The story for this one is fucked up in many aspects. The first being that it actually happened and is the basis for so many horror films over the years since. Hell, before this even happened in 1985 it was already the base story line for the 1966 horror comedy The Undertaker and his Pals. What makes this particular story unnerving is that is follows a situation that actually happened and that real people was fed human meat. If I didn’t like steak so much I would almost become a vegetarian because of this. The story flows very well and never lets up. This is one of the few flicks that I was unable to peel my eyes from the screen regardless of what was going on.
Finally, the film does have a few kills scenes but not as many as we would like. The practical effects are fucking amazing and what is done to the bodies once they are dead is where the film makes up for the kills. Overall, The Untold Story is fucking crazy. Just knowing this really happened is enough to make the viewer sit on edge but the film follows it up with a truly disturbing film. This is a film all horror fans will need to see and stop watching all these bullshit “based on true events” flicks that did not happen. Check it out!