Thursday, October 7, 2004

Park Chan-Wook new film "Old Boy"


"As mannered as a hyper-violent manga, yet masterfully framed in the archetypal structure of a Greek tragedy, director Park Chan-Wook's "Old Boy" intoxicates its audience with the perilous, vindictive dance of a torturer and his victim ensnared in a crescendo of psychological visceral revenge."

Based on that synopsis from the British Film Council you would think this was going to be an over-the-top sensationalized Tarantino blunderfest, but instead you get something between the almost hilarious Takashi Miike-like ultraviolence and the unpredictable Alfred Hitchcock plot/moral turns & twists. Inventively shot and quite a surprise the first time through, its no wonder this film won the Jury Prize at Cannes.

(His previous film "Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance" is also an engaging anti-feelgood
film that is beautifully shot and involves one of the most amazing downward spirals
of life-events I have ever seen in a film... and a very excrutiating turture sequence
that was actually physically painful to watch.)

Not playing in any US cinemas as of yet, but Scarecrow Video here in Seattle has a Korean DVD for rental/purchase for those of you who made the wise investment in a All-Region player.