Theatrical release poster
|Hangul||여고괴담 3: 여우계단|
|Revised Romanization||Yeogogoedam 3: Yeowoogyedan|
|McCune–Reischauer||Yŏgogoedam 3: Yŏukyedan|
|Directed by||Yun Jae-yeon|
|Produced by||Lee Chun-yeon|
|Written by||Kim Su-ah|
|Music by||Gong Myeong-ah|
|Distributed by||Cinema Service|
Wishing Stairs (Korean: 여고괴담 3: 여우계단; RR: Yeogogoedam 3: Yeowoogyedan; also known as Whispering Corridors 3: Wishing Stairs) is a 2003 South Korean horror film. It is the third installment of the Whispering Corridors film series set in girls high schools, but, as with all films in the series, is unrelated to the others; apart from a song being sung in one scene that is a pivotal plot in Voice.
Yun Jin-sung (Song Ji-hyo) and Kim So-hee (Park Han-byul) are best friends studying ballet at an all-girls art school. However, their friendship turns sour when they find themselves competing for a single spot in a Russian ballet school. Jin-sung learns from an odd student named Eom Hye-ju (Jo An) of an old legend that if a person climbs the twenty eight steps leading up to the school's dormitory and finds a twenty ninth, then a fox spirit will grant that person's wish. Curious, Jin-sung climbs the stairs and comes across the twenty ninth, happily wishing to gain the spot. To her surprise and anger, So-hee is selected instead. Jin-sung declares her hatred towards her best friend and accidentally sends So-hee down a flight of stairs during a scuffle. So-hee is left unconsciousness and hospitalized.
Jin-sung visits So-hee in the hospital and learns that she is no longer able to study ballet due to her injuries from the fall. She tries to apologize, but receives no reply and leaves guilty. The next day, she learns that So-hee has committed suicide by jumping out of her hospital room. As the fight between the two was witnessed by several other girls, Jin-sung is now looked down upon by the students, who believe that she intentionally pushed So-hee down out of jealousy. Jin-sung's wish comes true and she gets the spot for the ballet school. Her fellow students throw her a surprise party for it, but still treat her coldly by throwing a cake into her face.
Affected greatly by So-hee's death, as she was the only one to treat her with kindness, Hye-ju attempts to keep So-hee's belongings for herself, but is ridiculed by other students for it, mainly Han Yun-ji, who bullies her relentlessly. Later on, she climbs the steps and wishes for So-hee to come back. So-hee returns as a twisted spirit who possesses Hye-ju.
The possessed Hye-ju confronts Yun-ji for bullying her and stabs her to death with scissors. Jin-Sung encounters Hye-ju as well, who tries to convince her that she is So-hee. After seeing Yun-ji's corpse, Jin-sung is convinced that Hye-ju is insane and gets away. The spirit of So-hee makes Hye-ju light a match, leaving the troubled girl to perish in flames.
While Jin-sung is preparing to leave for the ballet school, she is haunted by So-hee several times. Unable to endure the spirit's presence any further, she tries to climb the stairs again in order to wish her away. Before she can reach the top, So-hee holds her as Jin-sung confesses that she didn't hate her and simply wanted to be happy. Believing that Jin-sung does not love her as much she does, So-hee states that she want to be with her always and proceeds to crush Jin-sung's stomach with her arms, killing her. The spirit then vanishes.
Some time later, a new girl (whose face is not seen) moves into the dorm room that Jin-sung once occupied. A picture with Jin-sung and So-hee on it is seen on the floor. In the photo, So-hee's irises disappear, implying that she still remains.
- Song Ji-hyo - Yun Jin-sung
- Park Han-byul - Kim So-hee
- Jo An - Eom Hye-ju
- Park Ji-yeon - Han Yun-ji
- Kong Sang-ah - Kyeong-jin
- Lee Se-yeon - Young-seon
- Hong Soo-ah - sculpture club member
- Lee Min-jung - dance double for Yun Jin-sung
- Kwak Ji-min - dance class junior
- Moon Jung-hee - dance teacher
The film itself seems to mirror the ballet Giselle, which girls in the film are studying, as well as drawing upon the classic short story The Monkey's Paw, with So-hee as Giselle, and Jin-sung as Albrecht. Unhappy with always having to play the "prince" to So-hee's princess, Jin-sung betrays So-hee, which in turn leads to So-hee being crippled and commits suicide after her friend Jin-sung confesses she has hated her all along. When So-hee's spirit is wished back, Jin-sung is haunted by So-hee's ghost, the love she once felt for her friend warped by Jin-sung's hurtful actions.
As in the two previous movies, this film has strong themes of friendship, betrayal, and the taboo of lesbian affairs in an all-girls school.