"Mirrors" is an attempt at an American remake of a Korean horror film and it just doesn't translate. Even if you're not familiar with the original story, there are constant inconsistencies within the story and a climax that just makes the movie fall apart under closer inspection. The premise is that an ex-police officer down on his luck is taking a job as a night guard at an abandoned shopping center when he starts having visions inside the mirrors of the building. He discovers that there is a mystery that needs to be solved if he wants these horrifying images to stop and his family to be safe. It all leads to flashbacks of a horrendous fire, people's reflections taking over their bodies, a conspiracy to hide the truth about a young girl, demonic possessions, revelations about mirrors and an exorcism gone wrong.
There appear to be certain rules set early in the movie but those rules get broken as the story moves along. For example, the main way that mirrors kill people in the film is by having the reflections act on their own and force people to commit suicide (it's hard to explain how exactly but that's the general idea) but towards the climax of the film this isn't consistent. Sometimes reflections attack other people or appear without the person who created them being in the room. The reflections feel more like evil ghost duplicates than actual evil mirror-world versions of themselves that are trapped in reflective surfaces. Most of the time, the mirrors don't make any noise. That makes sense because they're just images reflected that gain the supernatural ability to influence the person that's being reflected instead of the other way around but towards the end of the film you hear some reflections making noises and talking and it doesn't make any sense. There are even some scenes where people are being attacked without any reflection present, so in the end you just give up trying to understand what's going on with the movie.
Another big flaw in the film is that it isn't very frightening. You'll be jumping out of your seat plenty, but that's because the movie uses cheap jump scares to startle you. If it isn't a quick flash of a grotesque mutilated body accompanied by a music sting, it's a sudden flapping of wings or a door slamming. The movie has some genuinely creepy looking sets and some unsettling scenes but instead of building suspense and letting the chills slowly come to you as you start playing with possible scenarios in your head it just interrupts itself with these cheap sound cues and loud noises. It's a shame because the movie actually starts off pretty creepy. You have this really big derelict shopping center that was the setting for a big tragedy, the whole place is completely dark and it's the middle of the night, our main character is stuck there for hours on his, there are creepy burnt mannequins all over the place... but it just drops that entirely. A significant portion of the film is just set in broad daylight, in your everyday locations. It doesn't help that the characters in the movie make the same mistakes as every other character that sees ghosts and is forced to solve a supernatural mystery. Ben Carson acts erratically, breaking mirrors and painting over them without giving any explanations to the people around him and he doesn't ever try to collect evidence that there are weird things going on. He never tries to convince the people he is trying to protect that he isn't crazy, just so we can have the scene where he gets into a fight with the people that don't believe him. Yes, it would be very difficult to explain to someone why having any reflective surface in a building is dangerous but off the top of my head I can just make up a reason that sound at least plausible. How about you say that the guy who was working at the old shopping center before you has gone crazy, is after you and starts attacking people whenever he sees his reflection? Sure that's ridiculous but your estranged wife is more likely to go along with you vandalizing her house if you give her any explanation rather than just nothing.
Where the movie really falls apart though, is at the end. We're told that long ago the problem of the ghosts/mirrors/demonic creatures was tackled by exorcists and priests and that they had no success so the threat is still out there. Ok, as an audience we get that, so what's next? how about an ending that totally contradicts this statement and makes the behavior of the characters in the film totally unexplainable! The ridiculous explanation for the mirrors is nothing compared to the climax of the film, which is taken from a totally different genre and is downright silly. It would be wrong to spoil exactly what happens but if you see the final confrontation you'll be shaking your head in embarrassment.
The movie isn't a complete disaster but there are points in the film where you can totally tell that the original story just wouldn't translate into a North American setting and it feels the screen writer just didn't know what to do so he picked something at random from another horror movie to fill in the gaps. It ends up playing like a terrible Asian ghost movie and a terrible American haunted house story just mashed together and coarsely stitched so it would stay in place just long enough for the movie to conclude. If the concept of "Mirrors" sounds interesting to you track down the original source material, or just grab a good Asian horror film and don't bother sitting through this nearly 2-hour-long train wreck because you'll be really frustrated as everything that looked promising at first falls flat on its face. (Dvd, April 11, 2013)