[Movie Review] Phobia 2 (2009) ★★★★★

Phobia 2 (2009)

Phobia 2 offers five original tales of horror with scares, gruesomeness and hilarious comedy. 

Phobia 2 or Ha phraeng is a Thai supernatural anthology horror film that consists of 5 stories that all have somehow to do with karma. The five different stories are all different subgenres of horror, that vary from a dark fairytale, zombies, ghosts and a comedy horror to end this wonderful and well-crafted anthology film. Each story has a different style and tone so it covers a lot of horror ground, that although varies in themes and topics, it will speak to any horror fan. Well-told with horrific twists and scares this anthology is a must see.

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Although this horror anthology doesn’t have a clear wraparound, they almost all have to do with karma and some elements return or are shown as a cameo in a different segment.

Novice ★★★★★

(directed and written by Paween Purikitpanya & co written by Nitis Napichayasutin)

Pey is a fourteen-year-old boy, who for is own safety, has to stay with the monks in the forest till things settle down according to his mother. Nearby the temple a ritual for the Hungry Ghost is being held, but when Pey disturbs the siting and eats the food meant for the ghosts, he awakens something in the woods and he has to face what he has done.

This is a dark fairytale-like story that is both creepy and tragic. The hungry ghost is a magnificent creature and the idea is very much related to karma. When we find out why he has to hide with the monks, the story takes a dark turn. Well-told and filmed with mystery and a supernatural punishment. 

Ward ★★★★★

(directed by Visute Poolvoralaks & written by Sophon Sakdaphisit, Parkpoom Wongpoom)

Arthit is a young man who crashed his bike and ends up in the hospital. In the same room an old man is on life support waiting for his people to pull the plug. But there is something strange going on at night and Arthit has weird and horrific hallucinations, that maybe are real after all.

This is a very creepy tale that feels claustrophobic and due to the fact that Arthit is confined to his bed, creates a feeling of helplessness. What is about to happen does feel like there’s no escape possible. Well-shot, with an unnerving atmosphere and some jump scares and a great twist.

Backpackers ★★★★★

(directed and written by Songyos Sugmakanan & cowritten by Sopana Chaowwiwatkul)

A young Japanese couple is hitchhiking on a deserted road and when a truck finally wants to take them for money, they seem to be on their way to Bangkok. But when they hear banging coming from the back of the truck something sinister is being transported and the truck driver and his son and the Japanese couple have to fight for their lives. 

This zombie tale has a very original take, includes some social commentary and is gory, gruesome and has a grisly ending. The zombies look great and there’s action, suspense, and gruesomeness both human and supernatural. 

Salvage ★★★★★

(directed and written by Parkpoom Wongpoom & cowritten by Sophon Sakdaphisit)

Nuch is a car dealer who sells cars that have been in a deadly accident but she fixes them up without telling the car’s history to the customers. But when her son Toey plays hide and seek in those cars, Nuch can’t find him anymore while she is being attacked by all the ghosts who have died in all those cars. 

This is a great original ghost story with a unique take and story. And it’s the perfect example of karma in the most horrific way. Within a claustrophobic atmosphere Nuch is getting more terrified by the minute afraid for Toey and of the ghosts. The ending is quite brutal. Fun part is that the car with which the Japanese girl fled, is now for sale and seen in the first shot.

In the End ★★★★★

(directed and written by Banjong Pisanthanakun & cowritten by Mez Tharatorn, Chantavit Dhanasevi)

Ter, Puak, Shin and Aey are part of the movie crew of Alone 2. When one of the actresses, Kate, gets sick, Aey takes her to the hospital. They are about to film the ending and now that Kate is gone they have to come up with a new ending. After some new and terrible ideas they have come up with something but then Kate shows up all of a sudden. She wants to finish the movie. The guys suspect she is a ghost after Aey called them that the doctor told him she had died. And that they have to finish the film to let the ghost rest in peace. 

This the final segment and it closes this impressive anthology with a blast of a comedy. It’s hilarious in so many ways. The four guys are great. They can scream like a little girl, tend to be brave but want to flee the set desperately. The story is amazingly funny with a lot of twists and turns that create more chaos and hilarious moments. There are so many fun little scenes in this segment and every minute is used to the max to be creatively funny and it works so well.

Why you should watch it

Phobia 2 is an outstanding anthology horror film that has no weak segments. Each story is evenly strong in its own way. It’s original, it’s well-told, it looks great and the twists and turns keep you on the egde of your seat. Often enough anthologies have different segments that aren’t all evenly good or liked. But in this film every story was right and every story is evenly good. From ghost and zombies to grisly horror and comedy. Each story offers a different subgenre and tone and style, that are excellently executed. Offering something new and fresh with old familiar horror tropes. Also the order in which they are shown is excellently chosen and after a very gruesome tale it ends with a lot of humor, to leave the viewer with a more cheerful feeling.

My favorite part

Although I liked every story, I really enjoyed ‘In the End.’ It was so cleverly done and so funny. It also offers a lot of new twists and turns that brought up more laughs and then it got even more funny. It was a smart choice to end with this parody comedy.


Rating: ★★★★★

Fun factor: ★★★★★

Gore factor: ★★★★☆

Scare factor: ★★★★☆

Gruesome factor: ★★★★★

Originality factor: ★★★★★

Entertainment factor: ★★★★★

Cast and crew

Phobia 2 stars Jiraya La-ongmanee (Pey), Dan Worrawech Danuwong (Arthit), Charlie Trairat (Joi), Suteerush Channukool (Driver), Akiko Ozeki (Japanese Girl) Theeraneth Yuki Tanaka (Japanese Boy), Nicole Theriault (Nuch), Peeratchai Roompool (Toey), Marscha Wattanapanich (Marsha), Nattapong Chartpong (Ter), Wiwat Kongrasri (Shin), Pongsatorn Jongwilak (Puak), Kantapat Permpoonpatcharasuk (Aey) and Phijitra Ratsameechawalit (Kate).

Duration: 125 minutes. Music: Therdsak Chanpan, Chatchai Pongprapaphan Cinematography: Naruphol Chokanapitak, Jira Maligool, Somboon Piriyapukdeekul, Paween Purikipanya Niramon Ross. Edited by: Paween Purikitpanya, Thammarat Sumethsupachok, Boonsak Watanavisit. Production companies: GMM Tai Hub. Distributed by: Golden Village Pictures. 

Check the trailer below

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