The latest Shudder original, 0.0 MHz is a fascinating gem of Korean horror cinema. While on the surface it’s nothing more than a typical supernatural thriller, it ends up being an interesting amalgamation of many different horror tropes and subgenres. Some work, some don’t. To find out which is which, let’s take a closer listen to 0.0 MHz.
Evil Dead Meets Asian Horror
We follow a group of college students, who are also paranormal enthusiasts, as they travel to a small village in the countryside where a tragedy once struck. Their goal is to bring a camera and discover video evidence, so it can be sold for TV rights.
Upon being told that a certain frequency opens one up to the spirit world (hence the title), one of them listens to it, but things go terribly wrong. She’s taken over by a malevolent spirit, which leads to a myriad of horror, including a bona fide exorcism to try and save her.
The film makes an interesting distinction in that halfway through, they abandon the “haunted cabin” and head back for the city. So many times, horror fans yell at the screen and ask why the characters simply don’t leave, but here they do that almost right away.
On the few occasions that we do see the spirit itself, its appearance is similar to that of other long, dark-haired, female spirits we’ve grown accustomed to from The Ring and The Grudge. Between that and the Evil Dead/Cabin in the Woods aesthetic from the first half of the movie, it’s quite the interesting tonal shift.
The exorcism is probably the most interesting part, though we don’t want to spoil why. Let’s just say that it begins quite unassuming and tame, but ends up getting a bit over the top, but in a fun way.
The only thing the movie really does “wrong” per se, is that it doesn’t fully explore certain thing that it could. For example, the title of the film refers to a frequency, which is supposed to have supernatural elements, but it’s never really fleshed out.
Had they removed that aspect, and changed the title, the movie would ultimately be no different. It also dealt with the idea of capturing footage of paranormal activity, but it never fully runs with that either.
In many ways, you can tell it was made by horror fans, as they dabble in different areas and themes. But as interesting as this way, it just feels like they could have taken it much further.
For Shudder fans who were expecting some sort of techno-thriller, 0.0 MHz is probably not what they expected. And while it doesn’t necessarily bring any new ideas, relying more on known tropes, it utilizes and combines those tropes in a creepy and compelling way!
0.0 MHz is streaming exclusively on Shudder!