Saturday, November 27, 2010
Written by Eun-Kyo Park, Joon-ho Bong, Wun-kyo Park
Directed by Joon-ho Bong
Starring Hye-ja Kim, Bin Won, Ku Jin, Je-mun Yun
a slow kid is arrested and manipulated to plead guilty for the murder of a teenage girl in a small town in korea. his mother, knowing he is incapable of doing such a thing, begins to investigate the crime herself to free her son.
Another better-than-average outing from our friends in southeast Asia, this film brings us an interesting perspective of how some people are assholes all over the world and some people aren't, but possibly only at first glance. Quality direction drives us through a story that I don't think could have been produced in this country.
Acting might not be quite the tops here but I doubt seriously that the talent pool over there is nearly as deep. That said there are no prominent pustules, only a small area of abating acne on some of the supporters. The leads are all great and their characters are even a little too believable. Unlike White On Rice we have a genuinely-handicapped Asian person who is played for neither sympathy nor laughs. And the mother, whose life plan didn't include any child let alone a slow one, treads her horrific path with as much honor and humility as she can muster.
As we watch her journey, there are enough obstacles to both Schrodinger and the cat that we alternate between guessing and gasping until practically the last, beautifully composed frame.
i don't know what is going on with the mentally handicapped asian movies in our house, but this one was far superior to "white on rice". originally, i thought this was going to be much more suspenseful than it actually was. it was more a study of motherly devotion, and it was kind of sad. that said, it was still a really good movie. directed beautifully (i'm starting to think all asian movies would settle for nothing less, and i think american directors should catch on. even if the plot sucks, if it's got beautiful art direction and very deliberate framed shots viewers might get distracted enough and at least have one good thing to say about a cruddy movie) i also didn't see the direction the plot was going in because i was so wrapped up in the journey. being a mother myself, i felt for the overbearing mother, and the angry and annoyed son, irritated by the way she treated him like a child. good movie. two hours well spent.