Friday, December 25, 2015

Film Review: The Cat (2011)

The Cat (Review)
Byun Seung-wook/Park Min-Young/2011
Where To Watch:
Netflix Instant
Amazon Prime

"...story doesn't offer anything new and the characters are underdeveloped, but the horror and atmosphere are great."

So-yeon (Park Min-Young) begins seeing a cat-eyed apparition after she adopts a cat linked to an inexplicable death...

The Cat is a rather simple ghost story. The film follows So-yeon, a groomer at a small pet shop. After a woman picks up her cat from said shop, she is found dead in an elevator. After stumbling upon the crime scene, So-yeon is asked to care for the cat while the investigation proceeds. So-yeon soon finds herself haunted by an apparition with cat-like eyes. When the deaths begin to pile up, So-yeon links the mysterious deaths to cats. So, So-yeon and Jun-seok (Kim Dong-wook), a police officer she likes, begin delving into the mystery. It all leads to a predictable but sorrowful ending. It works by tugging at your emotions, but it does feel like it's dropped on your lap from nowhere — it just blatantly explains everything to you.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Film Review: The Target (2014)

The Target (Review)
Chang/Ryu Seung-ryong/2014
Where To Watch:
Netflix Streaming
Amazon Prime

"Although I left slightly disappointed, I'd be lying if I said I wasn't entertained."

Ex-mercenary and military contractor Baek Yeo-hoon (Ryu Seung-ryong) is shot, then hit by a vehicle under mysterious circumstances. Meanwhile, medical resident Lee Tae-joon (Lee Jin-wook) is forced to free Yeo-hoon when his wife is kidnapped...

The Target follows Baek Yeo-hoon and Lee Tae-joon. As it turns out, Yeo-hoon is being pursued by several people trying to frame him for a murder. In order to do so, they must keep Yeo-hoon away from the hospital and out of the hands of the police. So, these pursuers kidnap Lee Tae-joon's wife and force him to aid in their conspiracy. To their utter dismay, Yeo-hoon is a hard nut to crack and Tae-joon isn't very handy on his own. As they proceed with this wild pursuit, the mystery unravels. Although this is a remake (of an incredible thriller, if I may add), I think it's best if I kept most of the plot details to the minimal. There a few very dark scenes, some unexpected twists, and plenty of thrills. It all leads to a decent ending — it doesn't leave a very strong impact, certainly not as strong as some of the other scenes in the film, but it's satisfying enough.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Film Review: The President's Last Bang (2005)

The President's Last Bang (Review)
Im Sang-soo/Song Jae-ho/2005
Where To Watch:
Netflix Instant
Amazon Prime

"...aside from the rough introduction, this was a thoroughly entertaining film."

The day of President Park Chung-hee's (Song Jae-ho) assassination at the hands of KCIA director Kim Jae-kyu (Baek Yoon-sik)…

The President's Last Bang takes place during the hours before and immediately after President Park Chung-hee's assassination. Before the assassination, we're introduced to a plethora of characters, including the president, the president's bodyguard and drinking buddy, KCIA director Kim, and KCIA Chief Agent Ju (Han Suk-kyu). To put it lightly, it's quite a bit to ingest, especially if you're not familiar with the event. Fortunately, it straightens itself out rather quickly. President Park is throwing yet another party filled with alcohol and women. Director Kim has had enough and sets out to ignite a revolution of his own with the help of his agency and Chief Ju. What transpires is, of course, a grisly assassination and a political scramble to get to the bottom of it. It's nothing unpredictable, considering it's based on true events, but the endings cleans itself up nicely to deliver a nice punch.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Film Review: 24 Hours To Die (2008)

24 Hours To Die (aka Teureok) (Review)
Kwon Hyeong-jin/Yoo Hae-jin/2008
Where To Watch:
Netflix Streaming
Amazon Prime

"...offers more than enough thrills and chills to fill its 90-minute runtime."

When trucker Jeong Cheol-min (Yoo Hae-jin) finds himself in dire need of money and at the mercy of a ruthless mob boss, he reluctantly agrees to dispose several dead bodies... but the road gets bumpy when a deranged serial killer escapes the police.

24 Hours To Die is an interesting thriller. The film follows Cheol-min, a humble trucker. When Cheol-min's daughter is hospitalized and in need of an expensive heart transplant, Cheol-min races to raise the funds. Unfortunately, he falls into gambling and finds himself even deeper in debt. However, when he stumbles upon a mob boss' vicious murders, Cheol-min is hired to dispose the bodies in exchange for his winnings and his life. While en route to dispose the bodies, Cheol-min stumbles upon a car accident — a vehicle overturned at the side of the road. Later, he hits an injured police officer. This 'officer' turns out to be harboring some sinister secrets. This is a film where the less you know, the better, so I'll leave it at that. The film leads to a decent albeit underwhelming ending — it did feel a little unsatisfying.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Film Review: A Hard Day (2014)

A Hard Day (Review)
Kim Seong-hun/Lee Sun-kyun/2014
Where To Watch:
Netflix Instant
Amazon Prime 

"...one of the best thrillers of 2014..."

While rushing to his mother's funeral, corrupt homicide detective Ko Gun-su (Lee Sun-kyun) recklessly commits a fatal hit-and-run. After hiding the body, he's blackmailed by a ruthless witness...

A Hard Day is a twisted and engaging thriller. The plot may seem simple on the surface, but it offers plenty of twists and turns to keep you on your toes. The film follows Ko Gun-su, who is generally having a very hard day. His mother has passed away, he's being investigated by internal affairs, he killed someone, and now he's being blackmailed by a persistent and brutal man. I won't spoil the film's bigger twists — it's a case of “the less you know, the better.” However, I felt a plot point towards the end was a little too far-fetched — it was one of those “yeah, right,” moments. The ending wasn't bad per se, but it is a little sullied by that moment.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Film Review: Northern Limit Line (2015)

Northern Limit Line (aka Battle of Yeonpyeong) (Review)
Kim Hak-soon/Kim Mu-yeol/2015
Where to watch:
Netflix Instant
Amazon Prime

"...a very entertaining and effective film."

In June 2002, amidst the FIFA World Cup fever, South Korean patrol boat 357 is attacked by a North Korean patrol boat...

Northern Limit Line is a film based on real-life events. The film particularly follows Commander Yoon Young-ha (Kim Mu-yeol), Sergeant Han Sang-guk (Jin Goo), and Corporal Park Dong-hyuk (Lee Hyun-woo), as well as briefly setting up the other noble soldiers of Battleship 357. The first two acts setup the characters and their relationships — essentially, we see what's at stake. We also see a bit planning — the foreshadowing of the attack. This buildup is effective, albeit a bit cliché. (I'll explain myself soon.) The film leads to a suspenseful climax with a handful of heart-wrenching scenes. The end of the film somber, offering some closure. (Stick around for the credits!)

Friday, November 13, 2015

Film Review: A Touch of Unseen (2014)

A Touch of Unseen (aka Gwi-jeob or A Touch Unseen) (Review)
Lee Hyeon-cheol/Park Soo-in/2014
Where To Watch:
Netflix Instant
Amazon Prime

"...the story is lacking in character and the direction is ineffective."

After the death of their parents, two sisters are rattled when they begin to experience supernatural attacks...

A Touch of Unseen follows Yeon-hee (Park Soo-in), a student struggling to make ends meet while being stalked by her deranged ex-boyfriend, and her estranged older sister Yeon-soo (Lee Eon-jeong), who abandoned Yeon-hee for her own reasons. The story starts off rough with a brief and vague introduction, then skips three years — which I felt further complicated the plot. From there, the story is slowly pieced together. We see Yeon-hee is tormented by her ex-boyfriend Hak-cheol (Kim Jae-seung) and she's raped by a ghost when she slumbers. Yeon-soo eventually arrives and the pair reconcile as they try to fight off the malicious spirit and Hak-cheol. Without spoiling anything else, that's practically the entire plot. The film leads to a decent ending. 

Friday, November 6, 2015

Film Review: The Wicked (2014)

The Wicked (aka Ma-nyeo) (Review)
Yoo Young-seon/Park Joo-hee/2014
Where To Watch:
Netflix Streaming
Amazon Prime

"...takes you on a twisted journey through the depths of a sinister psyche."

As she settles into her new workplace, Se-young (Park Joo-hee), a devious introvert, finds herself bumping heads with Lee-sun (Na Soo-yoon), her snide boss...

The Wicked begins with Lee-sun scolding Se-young about her poor work ethic. The pair make a bet: if Se-young does not finish her work by the end of the day, she owes a finger to Lee-sun; if she does finish her work, then Lee-sun will owe a finger to Se-young. Well, Se-young finishes her work and demands her finger. However, Lee-sun manages to squirm her way out of the bet, but decides to pursue the issue. She insists on finding dirt to use against Se-young — despite Se-young's erratic behavior.. To her utter surprise, she finds a web of violence and deceit. Is Se-young possessed by a ghost? Is she a psychopath? The film leads to a disturbing ending.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Film Review: The Con Artists (2014)

The Con Artists (aka The Technicians)
Kim Hong-sun/Kim Woo-bin/2014
Where To Watch:
Netflix Instant
Amazon Prime

"It is certainly generic, but also entertaining."

Ji-hyuk (Kim Woo-bin), a master safe-cracker, teams up with his fellow swindlers for his grandest job yet...

The Con Artists follows Ji-hyuk, a charismatic safe-cracker living the good life thanks to his many successful burglaries. When he steals valuable jewelry from a shop owned by gang boss Chairman Cho (Kim Yeong-cheol), Cho recruits Ji-hyuk for a job of massive proportions in the Incheon Customs – stealing $150 million from a high-security area within 40 minutes. Ji-hyuk is joined by his clumsy pal Koo-in (Ko Chang-seok) and genius, conniving hacker Jong-bae (Lee Hyun-woo). The film leads to the climax you're expecting – you know, where the film recaps every twist and turn for you – and a cheesy ending.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Film Review: Our Town (2007)

Our Town (Review)
Jeong Gil-yeong/Oh Man-seok/2007
Where To Watch:
Netflix Instant
Amazon Instant

"...explores the serial killer psyche while providing plenty of thrills and chills."


A serial killer terrorizes a small town by crucifying his female victims in public locations...


Our Town follows Kyung-ju (Oh Man-seok), a struggling crime novelist with piling debt. One day, Kyung-ju murders his landlord and copies the serial killer's methods. Meanwhile, Jae-sin (Lee Sun-kyun), Kyung-ju's detective friend, searches for any evidence leading to the elusive serial killer – oblivious of Kyung-ju's actions. At the same time, the actual serial killer, Hyo-i (Ryu Deok-hwan), continues his murder spree and teases Kyung-ju while doing so. So, Kyung-ju and Jae-sin team up to catch him while unraveling the secrets of their pasts. The film leads to a satisfying climax and ending – the ending was a little dragged out, though.


Friday, July 17, 2015

Film Review: Gangnam Blues (2015)

Gangnam Blues (aka Gangnam 1970) (Review)
Yoo Ha/Lee Min-ho/2015
Where To Watch:
Netflix Instant
Amazon Prime

"...ambitious, epic, and entertaining."

In the 1970s, Gangnam is targeted by corrupt politicians and gangsters as a future development area. Caught in the crossfire, penniless childhood friends Jong-dae (Lee Min-ho) and Yong-ki (Kim Rae-won) find a golden opportunity...

Gangnam Blues follows Jong-dae and Yong-ki. When their shanty in Gangnam is demolished, Jong-dae and Yong-ki are recruited by Gil-soo (Jung Jin-young), a local gang boss, for a political skirmish. In the process, Jong-dae and Yong-ki are separated. Three years later, Jong-dae finds himself living an honest life with Gil-soo, now retired, and his daughter. Meanwhile, Yong-ki has joined a powerful criminal organization involved in high-stakes, corrupt real estate. Both striving for more, Jong-dae seeks to recreate Gil-soo's gang, while Yong-ki seeks to rise up. The film has a memorable climax – if you know Yoo Ha, you know the type of brawl to expect. The ending is also great.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Film Review: Twenty (2015)

Twenty (Review)
Lee Byeong-hun/Kim Woo-bin, Lee Joon-ho/2015
Where to watch:
Netflix Instant
Amazon Prime

"...a hilarious examination and celebration of youth."

Friends Chi-ho (Kim Woo-bin), Dong-woo (Lee Jong-ho), and Kyung-jae (Kang Ha-neul) stick together and persevere through their roaring twenties...
 
Twenty follows this quirky trio of friends through their early twenties. Kim Chi-ho is the slacker player of the group — content with living the day sitting still and partying the night away. Kyung-jae attends college and quickly makes a drunken fool of himself, while capturing the attention of the beautiful and financially-talented Jin-ju (Min Hyo-rin). Meanwhile, Dong-woo works multiple jobs and repeats his last year of school in hopes of becoming a comic book artist, while trying to support his suddenly impoverished family. Together and apart, the group go through several trials and tribulations – usually ending in hilarity. The film leads to a hilariously epic slapstick climax; however, it does sort of land on your lap from thin air, really barely being built up since it utilizes characters you only see for a few seconds in an earlier scene. Regardless, the entire film ends on a high-note.

Friday, July 3, 2015

Film Review: Ode To My Father (2014)

Ode To My Father (Review)
Yoon Je-kyoon/Hwang Jung-min/2014
Where to Watch:
Netflix Streaming
Amazon Prime

"Despite its flaws, the film is extremely effective."

The story of Yoon Deok-soo (Hwang Jung-min), whom, during the Korean War, is given the title of "the man of the house" as a young boy.

Ode To My Father is like a puzzle with missing pieces. We have enough pieces to make some clear images, but some of the bridges and gaps are missing. In other words, Ode To My Father goes over certain significant events of Yoon Deok-soo — from a child in the Korean War to an elderly man with a happy family. Deok-soo lives through the Korean War in poverty, travels to Germany in the 60s to become a miner and earn money for his family, and enters the Vietnam War on business. All of his sacrificial actions come from his promise to his father — take care of the family until he returns. It leads to a simple yet effective ending.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Film Review: Monster (2014)

Monster (Review)
Hwang In-ho/Lee Min-ki, Kim Go-eun/2014
Where to Watch:
Netflix Streaming
Amazon Prime

"...very quirky and even eccentric."

When her younger sister is murdered by a vicious serial killer, Bok-soon (Kim Go-eun) will stop at nothing to avenge her...

Monster primarily follows Bok-soon. Bok-soon is a young woman with a lot of heart and spunk. She's intellectually-disabled, but she rises above the name-calling with her sass and bravery. One day, a young girl, Na-ri (Ahn Seo-hyun), is abducted by a serial killer after her older sister's murder — a murder at the hand's of handsome but vicious killer Tae-soo (Lee Min-ki). Tae-soo gives Na-ri the opportunity to live if she can run away, but anyone she asks for help will be killed. Unfortunately, Na-ri asks Bok-soon and her sister, Eun-jeong, for help, which leads to Eun-jeong's murder at the hands of Tae-soo. Devastated by her death, Bok-soon bows to avenge her sister and protect Na-ri. Monster leads to a bloody climax and satisfying ending.

Friday, June 5, 2015

TV Review: God's Gift - 14 Days (2014)

God's Gift – 14 Days
Lee Dong-hoon/Lee Bo-young, Jo Seung-woo/2014
Where To Watch:
Netflix Instant
Amazon Prime

"...a great blend of fantasy, thrills, suspense, mystery, and drama."

This is my first Korean show review, so please bear with me. As usual, I'll go over the plot while trying to avoid significant spoilers. Thanks for reading!

God's Gift – 14 Days primarily follows Kim Soo-hyun (Lee Bo-young), a television writer, Han Saet-byul (Kim Yoo-bin), Soo-hyun's overly-trusting daughter, and Ki Dong-chan (Jo Seung-woo), a masterful-police-officer-turned-private-investigator. One day, during a live broadcast of her show, Soo-hyun's daughter is kidnapped. Soo-hyun tries her hardest to rescue Saet-byul, but to no avail – she sadly is found murdered. So, Soo-hyun decides to commit suicide by drowning herself in a lake. Meanwhile, upon learning of his mentally-challenged brother's imminent execution, Ki Dong-chan is thrown into the very same lake by angry gangsters.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Film Review: The Divine Move (2014)

The Divine Move (Review)
Jo Bum-gu/Jung Woo-sung/2014
Where to Watch:
Netflix Streaming
Amazon Prime
  
"...brutal fistfights, vicious knife play, violent bone snapping and even some bloody torture."

When he's framed and imprisoned for murder by a gambling syndicate, professional Go player Tae-seok (Jung Woo-sung) seeks vengeance...

The Divine Move follows Tae-seok as he trains for his vengeance. In prison, he teams up with a mob boss and begins training, particularly his fighting and pain endurance. When he emerges from prison, Tae-seok gathers a team of specialists to help him, including Kkong-soo "Cheater" (Kim In-kwon) and Joo-nim "Drinking Lord" (Ahn Sung-ki). Together, the team seeks to crush Sal-soo "Killer" (Lee Beom-soo) and his violent crime syndicate. Although a vengeance film at its heart, the story really plays out more like a typical heist film — a very violent heist film. It leads to a bloody climax and decent ending. I didn't like the backtracking, though, it felt like a cop-out from its original intentions.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Film Review: The Admiral: Roaring Currents (2014)

The Admiral: Roaring Currents (Review)
Kim Han-min/Choi Min-sik/2014
Where to Watch:
Netflix Streaming
Amazon Prime

"...Roaring Currents works marvelously as a historical blockbuster."

1597: Admiral Yi Sun-sin (Choi Min-sik) must lead his 12 remaining ships against 330 invading Japanese vessels...

The Admiral: Roaring Currents starts off a bit rough. The story drops you in the middle of this conflict. We're quickly told Yi Sun-sin is being tortured by the King, then released to aid in battle — we're not really told much more, unfortunately. After this quick introduction, Yi Sun-sin finds himself preparing for battle, which is difficult due to his small fleet and his rightfully frightened army. Yi Sun-sin must find a way to convert that overwhelming fear into courage. The odds continue to stack against him until the actual naval battle. Said battle takes up practically the entire second half of the film. The battles are a bit contrived but epic. The ending is well-suited for the film — I liked it.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Film Review: The Attorney (2013)

The Attorney (Review)
Yang Woo-suk/Song Kang-ho/2013
Where to watch:
Netflix Instant
Amazon Prime 

"It's one of the best Korean films in recent memory."

Money-hungry attorney Song Woo-suk (Song Kang-ho) suddenly finds himself defending suspected communist sympathizers...

The Attorney follows Song Woo-suk from the beginning of his search for riches. Off the bat, the film drops you as Song Woo-suk resigns as a judge and starts a real estate registry business. When the money dries up, like a true entrepreneur, Woo-suk moves on and starts working with taxes. Eventually, about an hour into the film, Song Woo-suk is brought into the communist case when Park Jin-woo is arrested – Jin-woo being the son of Choi Soon-ae (Kim Young-ae), a restaurant owner Woo-suk highly respects and owes a lot to. From there on, Woo-suk fights against the injustice in court filled with deception and twists. It all leads to a great ending.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Film Review: Miss Granny (2014)

Miss Granny (Review)
Hwang Dong-hyuk/Shim Eun-kyung/2014
Where to Watch:
Netflix Instant
Amazon Prime

"...a hilarious, heartwarming and enjoyable comedy with splendid performances."

Upon hearing she'll be sent to a nursing home, Oh Mal-soon (Na Moon-hee) stumbles into a photo studio that magically turns her into her 20-year-old self.

Miss Granny continues to follow Oh Mal-soon after she emerges from the photo studio as her young self. As her young self, she takes the name Oh Doo-ri (Shim Eun-kyung) and begins to relish in the benefits of youth. With her new image, she rents a room from her elderly admirer, Mr. Park, and joins her grandson's band to pursue her music career. All while suspiciously prancing and bickering like a shameless elderly woman. The film leads to a predictable yet enjoyable ending. It does skimp over some explanation, though – even if it's only magic, I would've like to see some more detail.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Film Review: A Better Tomorrow (2010)

A Better Tomorrow (Review)
Song Hae-sung/Joo Jin-mo/2010
Where to Watch:
Netflix Streaming
Amazon Prime 

"...one of the most melodramatic South Korean movies I've ever watched..."

Kim Hyuk (Joo Jin-mo) is a detective who escaped from North Korea as a teenager. He also works as an illegal arms smuggler. While conducting his business with his pal, Lee Young-choon (Song Seung-heon), Hyuk also searches for his younger brother, Chul (Kim Kang-woo), who was separated when his family escaped...

A Better Tomorrow follows Hyuk as he tries to rekindle his relationship with Chul. Meanwhile, Hyuk and Young-choon continue their illegal arms smuggling business. They are joined by Jung Tae-min (Jo Han-sun), a new and very ambitious member. Of course, Jung Tae-min decides to betray them and Hyuk is separated from his brother once again. Chul goes on to become a detective, Young-choon is crippled, and Tae-min becomes a leader. In other words, there's a whole lot of story compressed into this two hour feature. The film leads to an explosive climax of deafening gunshots and bromance. The ending is decent, but feels too melodramatic – also feels a little undeserving.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Film Review: Blades of Blood (2010)

Blades of Blood (Review)
Lee Joon-ik/Hwang Jung-min/2010
Where to Watch:
Netflix Streaming
Amazon Prime

"...director Lee Joon-ik makes up for some of its shortcomings."

In the late 16th century, the Joseon kingdom faces the imminent threat of a Japanese invasion. Skilled swordsman Lee Mong-hak (Cha Seung-won) seizes the opportunity to overthrow the government, while blind swordsman Hwang Jeong-hak (Hwang Jung-min) opts to stop him...

Blades of Blood continues to follow the chaos after Mong-hak kills the family of Kyeon-ja (Baek Sung-hyun), the stubborn bastard child. Mong-hak injures Kyeon-ja. On the brink of death, Kyeon-ja is rescued by Jeong-hak. Jeong-hak essentially trains Kyeon-ja as he tracks Mong-hak. Meanwhile, Mong-hak continues to overthrow the government with brute force. Although it packs quite a bit of story, it is predictable and cliché. The ending, however, was effective.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Film Review: Jail Breakers (2002)

Jail Breakers (Review)
Kim Sang-jin/Cha Seung-won, Sol Kyung-gu/2002
Where to Watch:
Netflix Instant
Amazon Prime

"...a very versatile and enjoyable blend of comedy."

After years of imprisonment, Mu-suk (Cha Seung-won) is finally prepared to escape, and he's bringing his swindler buddy, Jae-pil (Sol Kyung-gu), along...

Jail Breakers is a story of prison life. It's a triumphant story of escape and redemption. It's a story of lost and rekindled romance. It's a story of... a man and his spoon. Jail Breakers follows Mu-suk, who was jailed for stealing bread and has been digging himself out of prison for six years. It also follows Jae-pil, a swindler who has been playing model prisoner to get released early. After Mu-suk decides to finally escape, Jae-pil tags along to stop his ex-girlfriend's wedding. Their plans for freedom go haywire, as does everything in the prison during their absence. Jail Breakers is a fun story that leads to a good ending.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Film Review: No Tears For The Dead (2014)

No Tears For The Dead (Review)
Lee Jeong-beom/Jang Dong-gun/2014
Where to Watch:
Netflix Streaming
Amazon Prime

"...a very stylish and exhilarating action film."

After accidentally killing a young girl during a mission, mafia hitman Gon (Jang Dong-gun) wants out. However, his boss demands one more job: the girl's mother, Mo-gyeong (Kim Min-hee)...

No Tears For The Dead begins with a convenient accident in the US. Gon struggles with his mistake, but is forced to visit Korea and assassinate the girl's mother, Mo-gyeong. Mo-gyeong works as a successful risk manager at an investment firm in Korea. She's unknowingly part of a large conspiracy. As one would expect, Gon struggles to kill Mo-gyeong despite his many opportunities. Instead, he opts to save her, to act as a guardian angel, as police crack down on the conspiracy and as other assassins close in on her. It all leads to a bloody, action-packed climax and a moderately satisfying ending.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Film Review: Tabloid Truth (2014)

Tabloid Truth (Review)
Kim Kwang-sik/Kim Kang-woo/2014
Where to Watch:
Netflix Instant
Amazon Prime

"...I did enjoy Tabloid Truth quite a bit."

Lee Woo-gon (Kim Kang-woo), a talent manager, relentlessly searches for the source of a scandalous rumor responsible for his client's death.

Tabloid Truth is an interesting mystery/thriller film. The story follows Woo-gon after his close client, Mi-jin (Go Won-hee), commits suicide. Woo-gon blames her suicide on a vicious rumor that began circulating concerning Mi-jin and her supposed relationship with a politician. So, Woo-gon begins to track the source of the rumor, which unravels an even larger and more dangerous conspiracy. It has plenty of twists and turns to keep you on your feet, but nothing mind-blowing or completely unpredictable. In fact, most of the ending could be seen from a mile away. Still, I enjoyed it.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Film Review: Blood and Ties (2013)

Blood and Ties (Review)
Guk Dong-seok/Son Ye-jin/2013
Where to Watch:
Netflix Streaming
Amazon Prime

"...despite the very convenient story, the film is at least entertaining."

After watching a film about an unsolved murder, aspiring reporter Da-eun (Son Ye-jin) begins to suspect her father of the crimes...

Blood and Ties is an interesting crime-thriller. The film follows Da-eun after she watches the film. At the end of said film, a voice recording plays. The voice is eerily familiar to that of her father, Son-man (Kim Kap-soo). So, she suspects her father is the culprit. Her father has a way with words, though, so she doesn't believe it. Then, a man from her father's past arrives and she begins to suspect him again. That's essentially the entire film. She suspects him, she doesn't, she suspects, she doesn't, and so on. The climax and ending are interesting, at least.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Film Review: Kundo: Age of the Rampant (2014)

Kundo: Age of the Rampant (Review)
Yoon Jong-bin/Ha Jung-woo/2014
Where to Watch:
Netflix Streaming
Amazon Prime

"...a seamless blend of action, humor, and drama..."

In mid-19th century Joseon, the wealthy ruthlessly run society and a group of bandits fight for justice.

Kundo: Age of the Rampant follows this group of bandits as they fight those who take advantage of their authority. Dolmuchi (Ha Jung-woo), a poor butcher, eventually finds himself at odds with Jo Yoon (Kang Dong-won), who rules with absolute power. After some unfortunate events, Dolmuchi joins the bandits and is reborn as Dolchi. Dolchi then joins the bandits in a plot to destroy Jo Yoon's ruthless grip on the poor. The story leads to an epic climax and satisfying ending.