Sometimes it really does seem like there are no original ideas. "Unborn But Forgotten" is prime proof of that, a movie so crammed with cliches and ripoffs that it seems like a spoof.
Ever since the arrival of hit Japanese film "Ringu" and its solid remakes and sequels, there have been some truly lame ripoffs -- "Phone," for one, and the American cluck-clucker "Feardotcom." But "Unborn But Forgotten" takes that lameness and runs off into the distance with it.
Su-Jin (Eun-joo Lee) is a determined young journalist, with a peculiar mystery to investigate: women have been dying of bizarre physiological causes, apparently linked to ultra-fast pregnancies, even though none of them were pregnant before. The only link is a website called The White Room, which will kill you after fifteen days.
Of course, Su-Jin (who is already pregnant by her moody boyfriend) goes to the site. And having doomed herself, she begins searching for the origins of this cursed site. She finds out that it is due to a vengeful ghost (not another one!) who lost her child, and is apparently using the site to produce ghost babies.
Sound familiar? Just insert the word "tape" instead of "website," and "seven" instead of "fifteen," and you've got "Ringu."
It may seem like a new twist to have the pregnancy angle, but to anyone who has seen Hideo Nakata's "Rasen" -- the sequel to "Ringu" -- the pregnancy angle will seem all too familiar. Well, at least they found new aspects of the Ring Curse to rip off, rather than mere death.
Using a similar storyline isn't necessarily a death knell, but the slipshod script and lackluster acting seal the movie's fate. Director Chang-jae Lim is either inept or discouraged by the turkiness of this film, and so doesn't bother anything other than "boo!" scares. Subtle spookery can turn even a clunker into something interesting, but Lim seems too bored to manage it.
Screenwriter Hyeon-geun Han is definitely inept, leaving all the wrong plot threads dangling. How does a ghost start a site? WHY a site? Why is she mad? What's the point of what she's doing? And why the heck is the human murderer revealed so early, when he could have provided plenty of suspense? Don't expect any of it to make sense.
There are a few subplots that are interesting to us -- for example, the boyfriend finding that the pregnant Su-Jin might cripple his career, and how he responds to it. But such character-building is swept to the wayside. Instead, we get the occasional creepy moment (Su-Jin watching herself die), smothered in dull spookiness and incredibly obvious plotting.
With some decent acting but a terrible and derivative storyline, "Unborn But Forgotten" deserves to be forgotten.