Sep 7, 2010

Haunted Changi Review

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

Along with a party of seven, we watched Haunted Changi last Thursday at Eng Wah Jubilee. We chose this cinema because we figured it would be quiet on a weekday and we wouldn't have problems getting our tickets. But what a mistake it was!!! I'll tell you what happened in just a bit. But first, let's talk about the movie...

We got into the theater ten minutes late so I don't know how it started and what exactly we missed. There's also a scene from Haunted Changi where my wife swears she saw a pair of child legs dangling from the ledge!!!! None of us saw so it'll be freaky but nice to watch it again. So I'll either watch it again at a BETTER cinema or wait for the DVD.

On the whole, I rate Haunted Changi THREE stars out of five. It's evident great pains went into the editing and this sets Haunted Changi apart from all the other local productions. I simply loved the camera shots of the grand old dame of Changi. I've never had the courage to enter Old Changi Hospital in the day or night (yeah I'm a coward) but at least now I know what the interior looks like. The much talked about World War II Japanese torture chamber made a cameo as well. And man, if the tunnel footage is real, I need to apologize to an old friend. I seriously thought he was making things up!!!

I've got to give my friend Farid props for doing an outstanding job! Well done brotha! Without a doubt, he came across as the most genuine amongst the cast. With his piercings, tattoos and dreadlocks, I'm sure the ghosts at OCH were scared shitless!! LOL!

If there's one complain about the movie, it would be the excessive use of Singlish. It felt like Singlish was used on purpose to make Haunted Changi sound Singaporean. Don't get me wrong. I am fine with Singlish but too much of it becomes an OVERDOSE! 

Now here's the part where I bitch about Eng Wah. How would you like it if a movie abrubtly stops midway through the screening and the lights come on? Well that happened to us! We sat there not knowing what the hell was happening. Some friends thought the cast and crew were making a special appearance. Hilarious! Instead, this old cleaning lady from China appeared and openely declared in Mandarin that she thought the movie was over so she stopped the movie and turned on the lights. What the heck right?! The best part, the old hag was laughing throughout the time!!!!

After ten boring minutes, Haunted Changi finally came back on. Praise the lord! Helluva! I would have gone berserk if it didn't. If you watched Haunted Changi, I have a question for you! Were there running credits at the end? We didn't see any so I thought I'd ask. Anyhow, we gave the supervisor on duty our two cents about their service and got complimentary tickets. It's funny how "Complimentary pass for film breakdown" is printed on the tickets. It must happen a lot huh Eng Wah?!

39 comments:

  1. you seem biased because you know the crew.

    The movie was so boring.

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  2. Are you sure the cleaning lady is erm... real?

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  3. Okay this bimbo is confuzzled. Is Haunted Changi a mockumentary or a strange mix...?

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  4. It's suppose to be a mockumentary but i think the people behind it got confused along the way hence it appears to be "a strange mix". As a mockumentary its a tad insulting to the audience by being nonsensical in too many aspects. With such a good location and hard work in production coupled with a great basis for a horror movie, the people behind this whole project really sold things short.

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  5. It was horrible. The people who liked it either knows the crew personally or they are just kids who don't know what a good horror show is.

    Try posting a negative remark about their movie on their fanpage and you'll see it will magically disappear within a few hours. This is why all the comments you see are positive. None negative.

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  6. For those of you who dont quite understand and are confused, I think this kid wrote something pretty interesting about haunted Changi.

    http://phycological-trauma.blogspot.com/2010/09/haunted-changi-pees-in-pants.html

    Might wanna take a look.

    I guess people either love it or hate it. This is very new and I think it has a genre of its own.

    There are a lot of flaws to this movie, but hey, look at how far these guys pushed the boundary of a local production. and its neither related to Jack neo nor mediacorp. thats a huge success by itself =)

    If we just wanna complain bout everything, well, the least we could do it suggest how to make things better. Unless we guys can do a better job :P

    just my 2 cents worth

    cheers

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  7. This movie really cannot make it. its not that i can do it better, but seriously its not good enough to be shown at theatre. Probably only in local TV. I also agree, too much singlish. And the story about Xiao juan.. somehow seems very funny. Anyway, thumbs up for their braveness.

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  8. If my review is biased, I would have given Haunted Changi full star ratings. Probably wouldn't have mentioned the Singlish bit too...

    Fact is, I enjoyed the movie. Is that so hard to believe? I didn't buy my ticket and expect to be blown away. Nor did I expect Haunted Changi to be a Hollywood grade movie. Like most stuff I watch, I have ZERO expectations. But I did like it more than Paranormal Activity. That does say a lot right?

    I guess when you have an icon of Singapore like Old Changi Hospital in a movie, one may expect to see lots of paranormal B.S. Then again, how often do you get footage of a ghost/spirit on tape? Hardly ever! Try it for yourself and see what you come up with.

    I totally agree with the second last anonymous comment. Sure there are flaws. Which movie doesn't?? Or anything else for that matter. And yeah, they did this without the support of Mediacorp or Raintree Productions. No government funding either! But yet it's out in theaters islandwide and will be showing in Malaysia soon. That to me says a lot about the hard work these folks have put in.

    At the end of the day, it's ok to complain all you want. After all, you did pay good money to watch the movie. But for heavens sake, at least respect someone else's opinion. And if you don't, leave your REAL name for a change. It's no fun hiding behind a computer right?

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  9. I just wanna add...Could I have done better than the cast? Hell noooooooo! I would probably have shat in my pants and had a massive heart attack midway through the first day of filming!!!!

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  10. I liked the movie, and I did not go in with any expectations. And yes, I was observing the backgrounds more than the "action" bits and was disturbed. Heh.

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  11. I think this was pretty good actually and the singlish made it more... Singaporean. Didn't really expect it to be any good but it surprisingly wasn't that bad.

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  12. Totally agree with Noel. Everyone's entitled to their own opinions and the least one could have done was to respect it rather than claiming that it's biased based on his own view. oh... and what a joke to sign off as anonymous.

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  13. Won't say I love the movie but it was good enough for me to want to watch it again. The singlish was a good touch if not it'll be too hollywood like. Neway, cool blog dude.

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  14. How was Noel biased???
    his exact words were:
    "It's evident great pains went into the editing and this sets Haunted Changi apart from all the other local productions. I simply loved the camera shots of the grand old dame of Changi"

    This touches more on the technical aspects of the movie, which many movie goers fail to appreciate and give credit to most of the time. We always forget the hard work that goes into MAKING the movie, but instead always focus on the acting and the storyline.

    With regards to the MOVIE, he gave it a THREE out of five. Again, HOW IS THAT BIASED???
    If he indeed was, he'd have given it full marks!


    Now, I wanna ask the SECOND ANONYMOUS (the one after Mel):
    1. How was it horrible?
    2. What were you expecting from the movie when you sat down to watch it?

    Perhaps you could elaborate?

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  15. The photographic aspects of the film, in my opinion was well executed - the decrepit state that OCH is in was captured beautifully in many of the scenes (especially the generous use of time lapse as a visual passage of time). The script and acting didn't really do it for me, but overall was a pretty good effort for a local production.

    As for that person who said those who liked the movie are 'kids' and are 'biased'.. well it seems like if another person's opinion does not align with yours you have to go about denouncing it and resort to name-calling, rather than expressing objectively your views on why you think otherwise. How juvenile.

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  16. I'd like to express my feelings about this production as a cast and crew behing Haunted Changi.

    Initially when we set out to shoot this film, we had zero expectations or whatever. We didnt plan to screen it anywhere big, it was just more of a production that we wanted to do to share the experience of going into OCH with our friends and followers since it was being returned back to the government.

    We wanted to share the experience of how as a person from different perspective view about OCH, and thats why we had 4 very different main people in the film.

    Im pretty sure most of us grew up with the knowledge about OCH. Some, knowing more than others.

    And for some of our younger generations, they might not enjoy the privilege that we, the older generations get to go through a spooky place and scare the shit out of them selves.

    Thats why this movie is done in a first person view. There are facebook interactions between the crew, guys from different walks of life with with one common intrest, OCH.

    We welcome everybody and anybody, be it believers or sceptics. Thats the beauty of it.

    Yes this movie has a lot of flaws and I totally agree, there's a lot of stuff to improve on. Given the opportunity to change a few stuff, we would want to improve certain technical aspects of this movie.

    But I'm proud to say that despite all the struggles and the brushes against the big boys out there, we've learnt a lot as a film maker, producer, soundman and director, most importantly as a person. It thought us how to deal with future obstacles better and who are the people that we can work with.

    One important point that I'd like to highlight is that Haunted Changi the movie has become larger than any one of us in the crew.

    We have brought people from all walks of life, together to have a common discussion and I'm pretty sure everybody benifited something from this movement.

    Next thing you know, some guy might have made contact with a chick and they might wanna be spending the rest of their lives together coz they found the right person, because of their common interest in this topic. hahas, you'll never know :P

    We'd like to thank you all for giving us your support, lovers, haters and all sort of people.

    We would like to even thank those guys who really dont like our movie more because some of you guys made an effort to express your opinions and to help us better improve ourselves for the future productions to come.

    I wanna thank noel for being honest about his views and I dont feel that he is biased at all.

    If he were to be biased, I would feel that he is not a friend to me or the rest of the crew involved in Haunted Changi.

    Because friends are not afraid to be honest and express their views freely whether it was good or bad, coz theat will make us a better person.
    Worst Case senario, friends can only agree to disagree.

    One more important point that one of our crew brought up is that he was a hater as well, he hated a lot of films that he have seen because he felt that he could have done it better himself, thus, he is setting a benchmark for himself to strive to do a better production than any of the stuff he hated to watch.

    I'd like to end this long comment with a note.

    I personally feel that even IF this movie does not do well (which I hope it will do well la)
    I think we could have inspired all the other independant film makers out there to do a better job than us in hopes to bring a mega change to the arts & filming industry in Singapore, just to serve you other Singaporeans better.

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  17. i felt that the movie was bit draggy and irrelevant..the movie plot doesn't even makes sense at certain pointsD:...

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  18. The ending was just so dumb! If you think you are one cool dude, then you are greatly mistaken. You're just another dumb fuck that writes biased based reviews. I bet you already know you are full of shit...

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  19. dude! is there really a need to be VULGAR???
    it really reflects on your character, dude.
    tsk tsk.

    and, for the millionth time, HOW THE HELL WAS NOEL BIASED???

    allow me to repeat:
    his exact words were:
    "It's evident great pains went into the editing and this sets Haunted Changi apart from all the other local productions. I simply loved the camera shots of the grand old dame of Changi"

    This touches more on the technical aspects of the movie, which many movie goers fail to appreciate and give credit to most of the time. We always forget the hard work that goes into MAKING the movie, but instead always focus on the acting and the storyline.

    With regards to the MOVIE, he gave it a THREE out of five. Again, HOW IS THAT BIASED???
    If he indeed was, he'd have given it full marks!

    --

    its sad, you guys are channeling your hatred for the movie on him, just cos he's one guy that did a review. Y'ALL ARE A JOKE!!

    and lastly, dude, it takes one dumb fuck to know one. so i guess you know what i'm calling you too. =)

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  20. i'm still very amused by all the angry comments here, and all the hatred for the movie.

    i keep reading and rereading Noel's post. all he spoke about was the CAMERA SHOTS, the EDITING, and having the chance to see what the interior of OCH looks like thanks to the movie.

    NOWHERE in his post did he commend the movie for the storyline, the acting, the ENDING.
    in fact, he RIDICULED the movie for the excessive use of Singlish.

    the rest of the post was about his unpleasant experience at Eng Wah.

    so, for heaven's sake, can SOMEONE PLEASE TELL ME HOW HE WAS BIASED????
    are we all reading the same blogpost, or are you lot just plain retarded???

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  21. did the guy really die? or was it just a publicity stunt?

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  22. LD,
    Why are you so upset at Noel? It really makes you look sad and pathetic to be so angry and vulgar over a movie review and it's obvious that your comments are personal and totally uncalled for.
    U seemed angry that Noel was able to command a certain level of attention and respect from avid readers and fans. Is it because you can't do so and doesn't have wat it takes to be a public figure who shares his thoughts and opinions to people who actually care (poor you...) I feel sorry for u.
    Please do everyone a favour. Go get a life and probably some plastic surgery and brain implants before opening that foul, uncouth, filthy mouth of yours and polluting everyone's screen.

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  23. It's free world. I can be vulgar if I want and when I want. It takes a stupid person to say this low grade movie is good. So of course this blogger Noel Boyd is a dumb fuck!

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  24. Noel the fag Boyd is a coward. So many comments here but he doesn't reply. Why? Coz he is biased. Its so clear to see but all of you have been clearly brainwashed by this so called personality. If he is personality then why i never hear of him? Pui pui pui!

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  25. Andrew didn't die. It's all fake.

    The Chinese article posted here
    http://www.twitpic.com/2ohtan

    was exposing how they used his death as publicity stunt and that it failed terribly. People were saying they were pathetic and it was done in poor taste just to create hype for the movie.

    Support local movies, but don't support blindly.

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  26. N thinks LD stands for LOSER D*CKHEADWednesday, September 15, 2010 at 3:09:00 PM GMT+8

    eh LOSER DICKHEAD (LD), takes an even dumber person to misread a person's words. Noel didnt say the movie was good, dumbass. he only commended the technical aspects of the movie, DUMBASS. not the movie script, the storyline, the ending, the acting. YOU STUPID FUCK.

    And secondly, he doesn't reply to all your (and others') stupid comments because he doesnt need to stoop to your level, and has better things to do than entertain your vulgar and personal attacks. you're all just shooting your mouths off. why does he need to entertain little children?? waste time only!

    and Loser Dickhed, why you so angry at Noel ah?
    Is it because he did your fat and ugly mother, and then your father left her, and then she killed herself, so you got no parents now?
    which explains your poor upbringing and no manners, cos you had no parents to teach you.

    poor thing lah you. NOBODY LOVES YOU. poor thing.

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  27. To Anonymous: hey yeahh thx!! haha i'd like t believe its real though, so it doesnt feel like my heart went out fr nothing, arrgghh i'mma sentimental idiot!! lol. thx thx:D

    Thn in the original crew's blog? The underground tunnels? The production company who bought the film over? So what they said abt the underground tunnels & the chinese name calling out, i suppose is fake too?

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  28. I am a supporter of local production and to be frank, I think this is the lousiest movie I have ever seen. Gosh!!! I wouldnt even rate it.

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  29. I just watched the movie here in Malaysia and I loved it! So did my wife. Don't why you have so many negative feedbacks from people on your site...

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  30. apart from all the made up stuff, 4 out of 5 stars for the cinematography - love the shots.

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  31. so the entire movie is fake i was hoping the footage to be completely real is it farid or noel?

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  32. This movie is so good. Thought i think it's not an original idea, coz i've watch "Blairwitch Project", with a footage, dead crew, spooky place, old legend, bla bla bla. But, it's really good. If i had more than 4 thumbs in my body (i only have 4, including on my feet...) i will add it !! 10 thumbs up for the crew !! (i pick my friends thumb!!) But trust me, it's a lot better than Last Exorcism an Paranormal Activity.

    Their acting ? ok, that's not really good, but that's also make them looks natural (except if they were really scared).

    Honestly i will prefer this kind of film better than my country stupid horror movie with stupid Miyabi or idiotic Tera Patrick inside.

    About faking Andrew's death, so what?? It's a movie ! What you could expect from a movie ? Real dead ?? Don't be so ridiculous... I really gratefull when i know Andrew's death is a fake one. But i'll be creep out if he is really2 dead !! It's a viral marketing bro :) Don't expecting something real.

    Last word, GOOD JOB !! GOOD MOVIE !! You're really2 make me freak out !!

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  33. ok for a few minutes ago. am done watch this movie... what I can said
    .....?????? NOTHING.
    To be honest...too boring...can't complain or talk about technical part coz am not expert on tats things...overall this movie maybe just not for me.

    Then i tries to search on the internet about CHANGI...
    ok now I wanna say "U guyss So Brave" that all..

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  34. Adam Breimo

    I am a native Johorean living in KL . Just watched it moment ago .

    Well ... the negative facts is its rather a drag . The .. conviction of the 'actors' cant really be felt. But they are not trained actors anyway .
    Going into the bandwagon of horror flicks seems the daily serving today in Asia . I have to see the crappy one on TV3 most evening . Singapore is rather late coming with this genre but hey better than nothing !

    But looking at the positive angle , its a refreshing concept . Cmon , they dont have big budget here , being an independent filmmaker its really not bad . I see worse Hollywood craps with big budget. I am rather proud with non mainstream artist from any nation , apart rather pissed our national football team lost to you guys hehe.

    But do you know how i gauged that somehow its rather a success ? You got people asking ' Eh that guy really deah ah ? hahaahahhahaha

    Keep it up guys, Singlish made you guys ... Singaporean . how can we make fun of you when you stop doing it !

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  35. i've seen the movie about 5 or 6 times so far and i must say i simply love it.

    please take your time to read my personal opinion/analysis of the movie (i will split it into multiple comments);

    considering that it was a low budget production, this was really good and also professional work!

    if you have the dvd, browse its files and open (watch) the file VIDEO_TS/VTS_07_1.VOB (the last one in the folder)!
    its a small hidden(?) sort of "making-of feature" which i could not find in the dvd menu itself.

    anyway, it shows that there were indeed professionals at work and that the movie had a planned script from the start.
    (sorry for disappointing all those folks who still believe the story was real :P)

    nevertheless, in my opinion the movie cuntinuously gave the feeling of seeing "handy-cam footage" shot by said 3 or 4 people on their ghost run.

    the acting was indeed not perfect throughout all times.
    some scenes are easy to be debunked as plain (failed) acting, while others give some feeling of authenticity though.

    fair enough, i'm sure most scenes were not "acted" but real.

    although the ending of the movie was way too exaggerated for my taste, i think in overall the plot was good.

    for me, the movie gets 3 out of 5 stars!

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  36. i wanted to give it 4 out of 5 in the first place, but when watching it over and over again (partially in slow-mo and frame-by-frame) i found just too many "errors" like bad cgi or misleading cutting scenes!

    to name a few of those:
    -> the "cgi-shadow-hands" that reach out for sheena is A. badly rendered (the hand's and sheena's shadows overlap instead of being just merged into blackness, which is simply unrealistic/impossible) and B. its movement and zooming out is too linear for being "real hands" (unrealistic aswell)

    -> at the end of the movie when andrew heads down into the "secret tunnels" there is a clever placed cut-scene that shows that the tunnel scenes probably have been shot somewhere else than at OCH. (watch it frame-by-frame to notice!)

    -> same goes for the hanging-camera scene when they film into that very deep hole.

    -> at one point, audi films outside into the sky and moving thunderstorm clouds above the jungle silhouette can be seen.
    the clouds are clearly post-processed because due to shaking of the camera the clouds shake in a different way than the silhouette (no slo-mo needed to notice that).

    okay, let's forgive that last point because editing a scene like that is not that easy i guess..

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  37. as a compensation for the points mentioned above, there are a couple of really neat features included throughout the movie that convince me of good detail-work and that help bearing some rather boring walk-around sequences of course!

    foremost the barely visible sitting or standing figures here and there in an edge of the screen or in a small side portion of a room.
    and of course the technical aspect i loved most: the footage of the thermal camera, showing how the temperature drops and raises when panning around.
    this was impressive work and also a very good idea!!


    one more thing about those secret underground tunnels:
    i don't doubt that they exist - in times of war it's only logical to build facilities like these.
    but(!), first of all i also think that they were sealed off due to security risks.
    second of all, when gaining permission to enter the compound, i would not wonder if there were VERY strong restrictions for the crew about which parts they may enter and which they may not (it seems to me that the footage was shot in only one of the 3 main buildings - maybe i'm wrong though).

    remember, this building has been standing empty since 1997 (afair) which makes it most unsafe to carelessly walk around in.
    also, i bet no government would ever grant access to enter ruinous (military?) underground tunnels like these (especially not the govt. of singapore!! gg).

    last but not least, the tunnels shown in the movie were just too narrow to be suitable for quick evacuation of hundreds of people during an attack or something like that.


    okay..
    sorry for "debunking" some parts of the movie (other lovers of the movie are allowed to hate me now :P) and SORRY for my endlessly long post!!

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  38. hi all,im from malaysia and juz watch the movie in astro.i wud rate this movie 4/5..it has nice shoot and better story line compare to few ghost movie..and the messages u wanna send to the viewer are so damn clear!i simply luv it.keep up good work andrew,farid,sheena,audi and all the crews!

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  39. It's been awhile since I've replied to comments on this page. I've received way too many hate emails and comments I simply had to delete. But to the nice ones...here's my reply...

    Scarleticia: Hahaha! If you had more than 2 thumbs (can your big toes be counted??!), you will be weird looking. I'm trying to imagine a person with more than 4 thumbs. Lol!

    Adam Breimo: Thanks for looking at the positive side of things. Do Malaysians really make fun of Singapore's Singlish? Good molly!!!

    And hey! We may have won the Malaysian Tigers this year but you guys can always kick our ass next year!

    level4: You've watched Haunted Changi 5 to 6 times since you left the comment? How many more times have you watched the movie?

    It's awesome that you paid the movie this much attention. I think it's a plus point for the folks behind the movie.

    As far as I know, they didn't need permission to film at Old Changi Hospital. The movie was shot just before the building was boarded up and repainted.

    Ain't sure about the underground tunnels but many Singaporeans now believe that there are tunnels under the Old Changi Hospital. Heh!

    Anyhow, thanks for the comments. I appreciate them and I hope you'll check back soon.

    Nurul: Hey Nurul and hello Malaysia!!! I'm sure the folks behind Haunted Changi will appreciate the rating you've given them.

    And hey...if you do like Ghost related stuff, I work on a ghost show called Singapore Haunted. Here's the link: http://r3load.net/sghaunted.html

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