A Tale of Two Sisters
The movie is about Su-mi and her sister Su-yeon, along with their evil step-mother. We don't realize exactly what is going on until near the end of the movie. It's a movie where the innocent really suffer and are even killed due to the machinations of adults, but where, fortunately, at least one of the evil adults gets theirs in a supernatural manner.
This is a really good movie, more psychological than frightening, although there are a couple of actually scary moments in the movie. The movie is definitely one that you should see if you like Asian horror movies.
The movie opens in a hospital where a man is trying to talk to a fairly catatonic girl about something that had happened to her on some particular day, but she's totally nonresponsive.
A car drives up to a house in a rural area. Two girls emerge from the car.
This is Su-yeon.
The girl with the hat on is Su-mi.
Eun-joo, their stepmother. Not a very nice person at all. Neither girl says a word to her.
The father is talking to some one on the phone. (A lot of this part of the movie, in the house interior, is very dark, I think unnecessarily so. It's a problem common to American TV shows, also; it seems almost no one has an adequately lit house, or they haven't paid their electric bills or something. I know it's supposed to be for the spooky effect, but I think it's more annoying than anything else.)
The group at dinner. (Again, note the very poor lighting.) The stepmother reveals that she's invited a couple of people over for dinner (on another day.)
Two pills are put in front of the stepmother as she and Su-mi argue.
The stepmother hears the sound of running feet and sits up in bed. Earlier, the father had been in the bed with her but left and went to lay down in another room.
Someone, or something, enters Su-yeon's room and scares her. Su-yeon leaves her room and gets into bed with her sister.
Su-yeon said she heard noises outside her room (and inside.) Su-mi asks her something about if it was the wardrobe.
Su-mi goes downstairs and sees that the television is on. (maybe a tribute to The Ring.)
She also sees her father asleep in another room and she tucks him in.
Later Su-mei's getting a drink and finds something disgusting in the fridge.
The stepmother appears to be watching the static on the television.
Su-mi is having a nightmare. She wakes up and sees someone crawling on the floor.
The figure, it's head twisted at an unnatural angle, stands on the bed. (Again, the film is so dark in this part that you see almost nothing other than a black outline.)
Su-mi wakes up and realizes she had a dream about waking up from a dream, but is now actually awake.
Su-yeon is still asleep. Su-mi notices two patches of blood on the sheets and realizes that Su-yeon is having her period. She gets some sanitary napkins from her stepmother's room and gets into another argument with her.
Su-mi resting after washing the sheets and Su-yeon's nightgown.
The father talks to Su-mi and asks her what she is doing out in the cold. Notice he did not say anything to Su-yeon, a fact that will be important later.
Su-mi has recovered a couple of boxes of family mementos that were stored in an abandoned greenhouse.
She finds family photos, and in one she sees her mother (seated), she and her sister, her father, and her yet-to-be stepmother (on the left, standing.)
Su-mi finds out that Su-yeon has been injured, apparently by their step-mother.
Su-mi has another confrontation with her step-mother.
Su-mi then has an argument with her father.
The guests arrive for dinner.
Things are not going well. The stepmother is talking rapidly and in a manner as if she were drugged or something and high.
The female guest has an attack of some kind or something. It's apparently a seizure, and her husband finally is able to get some medicine into her. She later tells her husband that she saw something strange in the house, a girl under the sink.
The stepmother hears a noise under the sink and thinks she sees someone sitting at the table who wasn't there before, but the person disappears. Something reaches out from under the sink and grabs her hand. She turns, and someone is standing there.
The father finds one of the step-mother's birds dead.
The stepmother has been locked in her room, but she has a set of keys and gets out. She finds the photos and sees that her face has been removed from any photo in which she appeared. She yells at Su-yeon, then finds the other bird dead in her bed.
She attacks Su-yeon, then forces her into a wardrobe and closes the doors on her.
Su-mi had been asleep (with all that noise and yelling? And she was just across the hall?) She enters Su-yeon's room and finds it a mess. She opens the wardrobe and comforts Su-yeon.
The father confronts Su-mi (and seems to pay no attention at all to Su-yeon.)
After Su-mi complains about the stepmother harassing Su-yeon, the father tells her that Su-yeon is dead.
The stepmother is dragging a bloody bag behind her. She then takes a metal poker and hits the bag repeatedly.
Su-mi wakes up from another nightmare. She gets up and in a bit finds a trail of blood and the bloody bag.
She tries to find a knife to cut the rope holding the bag shut. She can't find one, and when she returns the bag has been moved into the wardrobe.
The stepmother confronts Su-mi with a kettle of boiling water. Su-mi stabs her with some scissors and they fight. Su-mi gets knocked out accidentally.
The stepmother is dragging Su-mi somewhere.
A series of disjointed images follows.
The father gets home and finds Su-mi on the floor.
He seems to talk to the stepmother and plans to have her take some pills.
Suddenly, the step-mother (who is a doctor or a nurse), suddenly appears and she talks to Su-mi, who is sitting where the supposed step-mother had been sitting.
We then see a series of scenes of Su-mi doing things that the supposed step-mother had been doing (plus, she kills the birds.)
Then we see the car from the start of the film, and we see Su-mi get out of the car, but she's alone.
The stepmother talks to Su-mi who is back in the hospital. It's easy to tell that the actual step-mother really doesn't like Su-mi at all and is probably as evil as she has appeared to be.
Then we go to a scene where Su-mi and Su-yeon are on the swings. It becomes apparent through a number of scenes that her father and the eventual step-mother were lovers and he was actively cheating on his wife. His wife killed herself in the wardrobe. Su-yeon discovered the body, the wardrobe tipped over, and Su-yeon was trapped underneath it, eventually dying.
The stepmother, now at the house, hears whistling at the same time that Su-mi does, the song being one Su-mi an Su-yeon's mother liked.
She enters Su-yeon's room and it's freezing inside. The door closes behind her and the lights go off in the room. The wardrobe door then opens. Some kind of slime or something comes out of the wardrobe. Then we hear a woman's scream while the outside of the house is shown.
Then there's a scene where Su-yeon discovers her mother's body in the wardrobe which then falls over on her, killing her. The future step-mother discovered what had happened but made no attempt to save Su-yeon. .
Main index page
Japanese Dramas Main Index Page