Written by: Michael Den Boer on July 26th, 2005
Theatrical Release Date: Thailand, April 4th, 2003
Director: Thammarak Kamuttmanoch
Writers: Oxide Pang Chun, Danny Pang
Cast: Apichej Kittikornjaroen, Woravej Danuwong, Kavee Tanjararak, Supatchaya Reunreung
DVD released: July 26th, 2005
Approximate running time: 83 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Sound: DTS, Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby Digital Surround
DVD Release: Panik House
Region Coding: Region 1 NTSC
Retail Price: $19.95
Big, Dan and Beem are three brothers who work for a magazine in the advertising department. When their latest design doesn’t go over well with their boss they start to point finger at each other which leads to them all leaving in anger. On there way home they each encounter a bizarre occurrence that foreshadows a tragedy in their near future. Dan while driving home crashes his car and when he comes to his is in a run down shack in which there is a old woman who has an uncanny ability to foresee the future. Big while his car is caught in traffic is approached by a little girl who is peddling goods only she doesn’t want to sell him anything she wants to buy the toy cars that he displays on his dashboard. Beem who is also encounters a traffic jam and when he is waiting for the traffic to move a flower pot falls from above onto the hood of his car. The girl comes down to apologize for the damage and gives Beem her phone number. Dan continues to visit the old lady who continues to predict his and his friends’ future. Her latest warning comes in the form of a photograph of Beem with Oam the girl he meet at the traffic jam and is now in a relationship. What is the connection between the old woman, the young girl collects toy cars and Oam? Can Dan and Big solve the mystery before the old lady next vision comes true?
Omen is a film about fate and how the decisions we make shape our destinies. The three leads are played Apichej Kittikornjaroen, Woravej Danuwong and Kavee Tanjararak who make up the popular Thai boy band D2B. I was impressed how well each of these three actors more then held their own despite their lack of experience. The story is filled with many clues that lead up the films most unusual twist ending. Even though the flashbacks scenes feel disjointed at first they play an important part to the answers that are revealed at the end. Omen was written, produced and edited by Oxide Pang Chun and Danny Pang who are also know as the Pang brothers. There most famous film to date is Jian gui (The Eye). Even though Omen was directed by Thammarak Kamuttmanoch is still has the feel and the style we have come to expect when watching a film that is associated with the Pang Brothers. The ambient soundtrack is vital to the tension that builds through out the Omen. The intricate screenplay is well written as the plot moves along quickly without ever becoming dull or repetitive. Omen is not your typical horror film, still is has its share of chilling and frightening moments.
Panik House presents Omen in an anamorphic widescreen that preserves its original 1.78.:1 aspect ratio. The colors look vibrant and flesh tones look natural. There is an exceptional amount detail present in every frame as the black levels remain constant through out. There are no problems with artifacts, compression or edge enhancement. The image remains stable through out as the source used is virtually flawless. For this DVD release three audio options have been included DTS, Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby Digital surround. All three audio tracks are in the films original Thai language. For this review I listened to the DTS which comes with razor sharp dialog and a deep bass tone that worked my subwoofer overtime. Overall this audio mix makes good use of the front, rear and center channels with most of the action up front. The music and effects sounds evenly mixed as neither ever drowns out the other one. English and Spanish subtitles have been included that are easy to read and follow.
First off Panik House offers the viewers a choice with their bilingual menu’s that can be watched in either English or Spanish. This is an interesting feature that I don’t ever recall seeing on any other release and it is an interesting concept that I hope more companies explore. The DVD comes with an outer sleeve that houses the main DVD. This outer sleeve has a glossier look then the main DVD case which also has the same cover.
Extras for this release include an insert card that has a reproduction of the films poster art and there is also a sticker that comes with this release that looks just like the DVD’s cover art. Trailers for Omen and Bangkok Haunted which is also currently available from Panik House have been included. Other extras include production notes, The D2B story, D2B band members’ profiles and a tribute to Big. These last four extras are all text based. Rounding out the extras is a poster & still gallery which have been broken up into three sections “Posters & Promotional Art”, “Production Stills” and “Behind the Scenes Stills”. There are two Easter eggs include don this release. The first one which is a forty minute behind the scenes documentary can be found via the special features menu. It can be accessed by highlighting an object in the top left corner of the special features menu. The other Easter egg can be accessed via the poster & still gallery menu by highlighting on the left side of the screen the picture of a rear view mirror which takes you too an extensive collection of photos for the band D2B.
Panik House entertainment launch their new DVD label in grand fashion as they give these gems from Asia the kind of tender loving care they deserves by giving the best audio/video presentation possible and load them with a wealth of extras. Omen is another amazing film from the Pan Brothers and Panik House’s DVD is an essential purchase if you are a fan of Asian horror films.
For more information about Omen visit Panik House here.