The Grudge Reboot Gets a Horrifying Rotten Tomatoes Score
Releasing a horror movie in the first month of the year is often an indicator that a studio knows it might have a disappointment on its hands, a trend which looks to be proving itself true with this weekend's release of The Grudge, as audiences and critics alike are both underwhelmed with the experience. The film wasn't screened for critics ahead of release, forcing reviewers to catch the film's first showings on Thursday night, with Rotten Tomatoes calculating that, of the 23 reviews it has earned, only 17% of those are positive. Audiences aren't connecting with the movie any more effectively, as it sits at only 20% positive reviews from users on the site after more than 200 reviews.
In the film, "After a young mother murders her family in her own house, a detective attempts to investigate the mysterious case, only to discover that the house is cursed by a vengeful ghost. Now targeted by the demonic spirits, the detective must do anything to protect herself and her family from harm."
While this score surely isn't promising for fans, the American entries into the long-running franchise have never been received well by critics, with 2004's The Grudge sitting at 39% positive while The Grudge 2 has 12% positive reviews.
Thanks to films like Scream, I Know What You Did Last Summer, and countless other imitators, the '90s saw a resurgence of teen-oriented slashers, which typically included self-reflexive humor and metatextual themes. In 2002, the American remake of the Japanese Ringu, The Ring, landed in theaters and became a major hit for the genre. That film, which sits at 71% positive reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, inspired a massive surge of American remakes of Asian horror films, which included The Grudge, Shutter, Dark Water, The Eye, and more, though none were quite as successful as The Ring.
Luckily, the volume of stories related to The Grudge franchise, which includes a dozen films as well as novels, comic books, and video games, means that even this disappointing entry into the series won't kill its potential permanently. It's unclear what the next step for the franchise will be, though reports emerged last summer that Netflix was developing a TV series adaptation of the concept.
The Grudge is in theaters now.
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