Reviews by Country
As the European title of the film suggests, the story is about rebirth or to come alive again. Interestingly, Revivre’s Korean title Hwajang (화장) means “cremation” and “make-up”, and as the film progresses all of these meanings come into play in the narrative of the story, culminating in an end that is at once poignant and thought-provoking, and kept me guessing at the outcome until the credits rolled.
What’s seemingly a bland story about a senior executive’s ordeal in … (read more)
A professor runs afoul of Korea’s intensely partisan and nepotistic judicial system when he’s accused of assaulting a judge. With the help of an alcoholic, partially washed-up labour lawyer, the professor unravels a conspiracy worthy of a John Grisham thriller.
Five years of planning and production, a seven million dollar budget, and three hundred staff shooting over five months travelling ten thousand kilometres across the Chinese continent. It is unfortunate that these figures speak to me (and probably you) more than the names involved with the production of MUSA: The Warrior. This film is the result of an amazing creative process, with the time and effort invested clearly displayed on screen.
This was made on a seven million dollar … (read more)
It’s rare to see a film that fetishises the male lead as this one does. Plenty of films do it for the female lead, by giving her lighting and camera angles that make her more alluring, or writing a character free of flaws yet still intriguing. But this time, it’s the man: an assassin known only as “Sad Eyes”.
This might sound odd, but if you watch the film you’ll see what I mean. A mysterious character clad all in … (read more)
If you like movies with secret masters, ancient villains, fearsome fu-skills, and buckets of butt-kicking action, then look no further: Arahan is here.
The film opens with five of the Seven Masters, bemoaning the fact that they’ve got no new disciples to learn the hidden arts. You can tell the tone of the movie immediately: several of the Masters are wearing daggy tracky dacks, and one smokes continuously. This movie does not take itself too seriously.
When we meet the … (read more)
I sat down to this one with Mark’s comments ringing in my ears (or at least on my retinas, said comments being encapsulated in an email). And you know how it is when somebody waxes lyrical about a film: first you get excited, then you get dubious, and finally you get a bit blase. So there I was, curling up with a highly-recommended Korean actioner and two cats ( my film review colleagues) preparing to be disappointed.
And man, it … (read more)