In 2001, the Japanese horror movie, Kairo (aka Pulse) arrived in cinemas. The film – about ghosts that invade the internet – was a critical hit, developed a cult following, and was remade for US audiences.

But how many Pulse films are there?


Pulse films in order

Image: ©Toho

To date, there are four Pulse films. The films – produced between 2001 and 2008 – include:

  • Kairo (Pulse) (2001)
  • Pulse (2006)
  • Pulse 2: Afterlife (2008)
  • Pulse 3: Invasion (2008)

Are all of the Pulse movies part of the same series?

Kairo is the Japanese horror movie which spawned the series and is a standalone story. You can watch and enjoy this one on its lonesome.

Pulse is an American remake of Kairo and was followed by two sequels, Pulse 2 and Pulse 3. So, PulsePulse 2 and Pulse 3 are part of the same series.

Hang on… wasn’t there an ‘80s horror film called Pulse – and is that film connected?

Image: ©Columbia Pictures

In 1988, Columbia Pictures released a movie called Pulse, about a seemingly sentient electrical current that kills people in their homes. The film boasted the tagline: ‘The ultimate shocker’.

Written and directed by Paul Golding, Pulse ‘88 is a pretty decent horror film (so check it out). However, it is not part of the Pulse series as detailed in this post, SO IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THE OTHER FILMS.


Who are the cast of the Pulse films?

The cast of the Pulse film series (including Kairo) varies. Notable cast members include: Kumiko Asō, Haruhiko Kato, Koyuki, Kristen Bell, Ian Somerhalder, Christina Milian, Rick Gonzalez, Octavia Spencer, Brad Dourif, Jamie Bamber and Rider Strong.

Is the Pulse series the work of the same director?

Image: ©Dimension Films

The Pulse series is the work of a number of directors. Kiyoshi Kurosawa directed Kairo, Jim Sonzero directed Pulse, and Joel Soisson directed Pulse 2 and 3.


What is the best Pulse film?

Kairo is regarded as the best entry, while the American remake and its sequels are not so well regarded.

According to IMDb, the Pulse films are ranked as follows:

  • Kairo (2001) – 6.5/10
  • Pulse (2006) – 4.8/10
  • Pulse 3: Invasion (2008 – 3.7/10
  • Pulse 2: Afterlife (2008) – 3.5/10

I hope this information about the Pulse movie series has proved useful. Should you wish to know more about other long-running movie series, please check out one of the recommended reads below.

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