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Violent thug Crocodile lives under a bridge by the Han River in Seoul together with a peddling boy and a homeless old man. Crocodile saves a beautiful young woman Hyun-Jung from suicide by drowning, but only to use her for sex. Yet, for some reason the woman, betrayed by her lover, stays with Crocodile, and a peculiar family-like friendship forms between the four homeless people. Crocodile gets in ever deeper trouble because of his mindlessly violent temper, and eventually Hyun-Jung decides to attempt suicide again. Written by
I saw this after THE ISLE, but it was made well before.
It's such a beautiful, painful movie. It contains images that will never leave me.
The film's protagonist, a lonely, loveless man, visits an underwater gazebo beneath a bridge in Seoul. He has a chair there, a table, a small gate. The scenes where he swims down to this subterranean retreat and simply stands there are so amazing I cried.
Characters express their best and worst emotions through violence in Kim's films, and never has this concept been explored deeper than in CROCODILE. The non-stop beatings, rapes and shovings have a cumulative effect on the viewer that puts you in the shoes of the film's hapless heroine.
It's clear that not as much money was spent on CROCODILE, but, like THE ISLE, its brilliance and brittle beauty is in its simplicity.
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