The Heirloom

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The Heirloom
The Heirloom FilmPoster.jpeg
Directed by Leste Chen
Written by Dorian Li
Starring Terri Kwan
Jason Chang
Music by Jeffrey Cheng
Cinematography Pung-Lueng Kwan
Edited by Ju-kuan Hsiao
Release date
September 16, 2005
Country Taiwan
Language Mandarin

The Heirloom is a 2005 Taiwan ghost movie. It concerns a house in which an entire family committed mass suicide and a young man returning to claim it as his inheritance.


The film begins with the description of an obscure occult practice in which people feed aborted fetuses blood to raise 'young ghosts'. These ghosts become powerful and bring fortune to families but at the same time can be commanded to bring death. We then see an entire family hanging in a room and a young woman crawling beneath their feet. She then proceeds to hang herself. After the grisly opening the film fast forward to present day. A young architect is inheriting the house, recently back from abroad. After some argument, he manages to convince his dancer fiance to live with him, and they celebrate one night in the house.

The next few days, strange things begin happening. Their friends start showing up at the house at midnight with no memory of how they got there. Footprints begin appearing on the floors, followed by strange noises. One of the friends is later found dead in their apartment, their neck bearing markings of being hung where no rope is present. The detective, suspicious of the couples late night visitors spends the night at their house hoping to catch them sneaking in. After being witness to the strange occurrences himself, he finds his himself showing up at the couples house late at night with no memory.

In an effort to discover the mystery behind this strangeness, he handcuffs himself to his office, but that night, his body is found in the couple's house, his hands pulled from his sockets. The young fiance, disturbed by these events, seeks out the only living relative of her husband, the one who signed the house over to him. She finds her, and the answer to the mystery, in an insane asylum. The family who used to own the house used to raise ghosts in the manner described at the outset of the film. They would pay for dead fetuses on the black market and fed it their blood.

After a while, he kisses the black arts, took a toll on the family, leaving some disabled or terminally ill. The family would take these cripples, and imprisoned them in the house using their blood for the ghosts. One of these cripples is the last living relative. Diagnosed with a brain tumor, she was cruelly sacrificed for the families wealth, driven to animal like living conditions. She had a twin sister who gave birth to the young architect, but she was crippled by the event and was put to the cruel fate her twin suffered. At the same time the brain tumor disappeared and the other twin returned to raise the baby for her own.

The other twin, driven mad by her fall from grace, slashed her wrist and fed the ghost her blood, and commanded it to hang her entire family. Now her vengeful ghost haunts the house, sparing only her twin sister for having experience the same suffering as her. The couple, hoping to remove the ghost, take the shriveled fetus's from the attic and give them to a priest to care for. But the ghost kills their other friend, hanging her from an invisible rope in a bathroom stall. During his fiance's dance performance, the architect steals the fetus back from the priest, and returns home. His fiance is there, and she reveals the terrible news to him. She's pregnant. In a tearful moment she decides to stay with him forever, cursed by his child's imminent birth to continue the Yang family bloodline.

The architect then knocks her unconscious, confessing his terrible secret. When he was still a child, he tried to free his true mother from her imprisonment, but having failed was drawn deeper into the family fold. He is the final member of his cursed bloodline, and tragically, he will be the last. He pounds his fiance's belly with his fist, trying to force an abortion and end the chain of horror. She awakens in a hospital, her fiance having committed suicide. In a final moment the doctor informs her that they have been able to save the baby....

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