AKA: X-Imp, Ximp, Second Imp, The Imp 2, Devils Offspring, Devil's Offspring
This movie is available for purchase at www.hkflix.com
The Imp wasn't a classic movie by any means, but at least it provided some chills and a good smattering of sex, offering the viewer a fun, if forgettable, romp in the exploitation genre. On the other hand, this psuedo-sequel offers the viewer nothing more than a migrane -- and that's if they are lucky. X Imp is the kind of cheap horror movie that gives the genre a bad name.
Like many recent Hong Kong horror movies, X Imp's plot centers on ghosts. A group of students (among them Simon Lui, who must be the world's only high-schooler with perpetual five o'clock shadow) are staying at the school over the summer. Diana Pang Dan plays the prinicpal (and, for some strange reason, a grandmother -- the lack of attention to the simplest of details like what the character's ages should be is just one of X Imp's many faults) whose grand-daughter is mysteriously slaughtered. You might think that this would cause the cops (led by Michael Wong) to shut down the school.
Well, no -- they actually transfer in a new girl (Lee Sui Kay), and more strange things start to happen. One girl commits suicide, and the school's priest has a sudden heart attack after telling the new principal Pinky Cheung that Lee is the "son of Satan" (one example of the great subtitles in here). Now, again, you might think they would shut down the school, but nope -- plus Diana is still running around doing wacky things like cooking dog heads. I know things are run a bit differently in Hong Kong, but this is ridiculous. Anyway, more of the students are killed (my favorite one is the girl who gets a pool cue into her eye, but since X Imp has a budget of fifty cents, she has to run around holding it by her eye to make it appear as if it's sticking in there), and eventually there's a lame plot twist at the end when the "true" ghost is revealed, after an unabashed rip-off of the "spirit cam" from Evil Dead.
I really don't know where to start with this one. There are a lot of points to raise here, and they're all bad. X Imp is as low-budget as they come. The movie was obviously shot in a matter of days; Michael Wong sports the exact same outfit in every one of his scenes, even though the movie's timeline spans several days. The gore effects -- normally one of the easiest things to pull off, even in no-budget movies -- look horrible. Particularly laughable is the dog's head Diana cooks up, which looks like a toy stuffed poodle covered with ketchup. Other "scary" effects include guys with jackets pulled over their head to make them appear headless, and the mainstay of cheap horror movies, maggots.
Now on to the script; even with two screenwriters, there was obviously little attention paid to it. X Imp seems to struggle to even get to its' short eighty-two minute running time, with a good deal of filler scenes that offer nothing and are just thrown away. One example is a long scene between Lui and Lee that suppoedly sets up a romance and a new plot twist, but is ditched minutes later. If you're going to pad a cheap movie, I have three words for you: tits and ass, not love story fluff. Even with a good script, the actors in X Imp probably couldn't do anything with it, though it's hard to tell with the atrociously bad dubbed soundtrack. Let's put it this way -- the guy they found to dub Michael Wong is actually worse that Mikey's usual painful Chinglish.
X Imp does manage to create a couple of chills, the musical score is good, and there is some decent eye candy from the actors... but that's about all it has to offer. There are a lot better horror films out there, and they deserve your time before you sit down with this. Even die-hard Diana Pang Dan fanboys should stay away.