Finally, a completely original ghost movie!! Or is it just a blatant (and poorly executed) rip-off of The Maid? Regardless, Ghost Month was certainly one of the smelliest slices of cinematic shit to splatter only the small screen in the last few years.
Despite its lack of originality, Ghost Month is truly a groundbreaking film—every written word, whether it is a neatly handwritten letter or the caller ID display of a cell phone, is not only shown on screen but also read aloud by the main character, Alyssa (Marina Resa). This makes Ghost Month the first movie catering to the functionally illiterate that does not star Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.
Oh, right… the “plot.” A twitchy young woman takes a housekeeper job in the middle of nowhere to escape from her never quite explained romance gone awry with Jacob (Jerod Edington), whose dubbed “Jerome” in the IMDb.com credits—proving that even serious movie nerds don’t give a rat’s ass about the details of this fecal-fest.
The home Alyssa flees to is owned by Miss Wu (Shirley To), who seems to be reading all of her lines from a teleprompter; and her Silent Bob-esque sidekick Aunt Chen (Akiko Shima), who specializes in looking creepily disapproving at all times.
Apparently there is a stellar set of rules to keep these lost souls at bay, but no one bothers telling our frumpy housekeeper until she’s already broken them all. And how she didn’t just know this shit already is beyond me. I mean, duh, Ghost Avoiding 101 right here:
- No whistling. (Little known fact—this was how the seven dwarfs met their doom.)
- Don’t turn and look if someone calls your name outside. (In other words, be a dick—but only outdoors.)
- Don’t sweep up an ash pile of crap that was burned as an offering to the spirits. (Seems like a legit reason to not clean for a month.)
So obviously Alyssa already fucked the Panda Bear on all of those, so she starts being haunted (and possibly butt raped, although she seemed to enjoy it) by ghosts. And despite the fact that she passes out every five minutes, we still get treated to a little 80s style work montage (minus the killer hair band music… stupid, low-budget crapfest) which reminds us that, being stalked by spirits from hell or not, bitches had better do the fucking dishes.
There really is no plot left to discuss, only some fantastic extra (and quite useless) characters. First there’s Nicole (Kierstin Cunnington), Alyssa’s extremely observant friend that she talks to on the phone a couple of times.
Alyssa: “I keep seeing things, people. Do you believe in spirits?”
Nicole: “Wait, I know where this is going. You think you’re seeing ghosts, right?”
Seriously, you can’t get anything past this chick.
Then there’s Jacob, the creepy ex-boyfriend. While we never quite learn what his deal is, we do know that he likes to completely lose his shit while leaving voicemail messages (and then call right back to apologize), and occasionally strangle a bitch. He becomes a clear favorite in the character pool early on in this meadow muffin of a movie.
We can’t forget Blake (Rick Irvin), the extremely-odd-but-normal-compared-to-everyone-else neighbor. As an author/veterinarian/horse breeder with a hard on for housekeepers, he also enjoys burying dead horses in garbage bags at night. While he doesn’t respond with much curiosity to blood curdling screams, a dog barking in the distance (which is another wtf? moment, since supposedly only Miss Wu and Blake have property on this mountain and neither own a dog) sends him on a vigilante mission to the creepy neighbor’s haunted abode.
My favorite Blake moment doesn’t have jack shit to do with him, though. As it turns out, our homely heroine Alyssa loathes him SO MUCH that she goes to his house TWICE to call him a liar and tell him to leave her the hell alone… only to spy on him with night vision binoculars for a while. Seems legit.
Despite the engaging characters, it’s the dialogue of this movie that makes it for me. Miss Wu, queen of the nonchalant, says to Alyssa on the last evening of the ghost month: “You should be happy, because, you know, the king of hell is gonna come out and get all the spirits and take ‘em back to hell.” I know that put me at ease.
Here are a few of the life lessons taught to us by Ghost Month (aside from the not whistling bullshit above):
-You can die from having a shit ton of hair wrapped around your face.
-If you’re being pursued by a cold blooded killer, hide under the bed. You’ll be safe.
-If you’re sitting in a tiny dungeon-like pit and the key to the lock holding you in is lying two feet away from you, it will take hours to find it.
-If someone forces a poisonous pill into your mouth and then swallows one himself, causing foaming-at-the-mouth death within minutes, as long as you spit out said pill after sucking on it for ten minutes you’ll be fine.
I always like to close these shitty reviews with my favorite quote from the cinematic stool sample being examined, and it was extremely difficult to choose just one from this gastrointestinal gem of a script. In the end though, I have to give the Poopy Proclamation Prize to Miss Wu, for: “I see you’ve been snooping around. As a housekeeper, you’re awfully messy.” ZING!