The late-1980s and early-1990s were bleak times for the Korean film industry. Market liberalisation had just opened the industry’s doors to Hollywood film companies, who quickly set up local offices and established a rival system of distribution. Audiences for local productions were in decline, with spectators favouring big budget entertainment from America, as well as Hong Kong martial arts and action movies, over films made closer to home.
Korean filmmakers needed to devise ways of combating the encroachment of foreign … (read more)
Hi, Dharma 2: Showdown in Seoul is a very funny fish out of water tale that elaborates the monks vs gangsters concept in more entertaining and interesting directions than its novel but uneven precursor.
While the first film began to drag after a ripping beginning, the sequel carries a more adroitly paced plot that keeps upping the ante throughout. The comparative difference in story structure becomes apparent in each story’s use of a thought puzzle. The original introduces a problem … (read more)