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The lonely and silent rider Tae-suk breaks in empty houses and lives a normal life while the owners are traveling. He does not steal anything and moves from house to house without any loss other than food, and he cleans the houses, provides small repairs or washes some clothes to pay for the hospitality. When he enters in the house of Sun-hwa, he does not see the woman that is wounded in her room after being beaten up on by her abusive husband Min-gyu Lee. Tae-suk helps the hurt woman and when Min-gyu returns, he hits the husband with golf balls and Sun-hwa leaves her husband with Tae-suk on his motorcycle. When they break in the house of an old man, they find that the man is dead and Tae-suk provides funeral service for him. However, his son returns and Tae-suk and Sun-hwa are arrested by two abusive police detectives. He is sent to prison and Sun-hwa is forced to return home. But she never forgets him. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
An extraordinary film - lyrical 'say it with silence' by filmmaker Kim Ki-Duk
The Korean film "3-Iron" has an extraordinary story - not the content 'Per Se' but its treatment, approach and delivery by producer-writer-director-editor Kim Ki-Duk. There are many quiet, speechless moments and scenes, yet they spoke volumes - almost the feel of Zen, meaningfully so. It's beyond what the society or people 'traditionally' may see or assume. Yes, there may be 'turn off's' and disapproving situations - can we, do we, have the heart to forgive? Are we so 'sacred' and impeccable without ever making mistakes in our lives? Yes, we may not be so bold and brash as to 'crash' into another man's house - yet the thought of the young man's 'reality' of being so simple 'matter of fact' walking into someone else's home is not so improbable? He actually appears to be a thoughtful person. He handles with care the content of the house. He picks up the clothes lying around the place, gathers them, hand-washes them, hangs them up, cleans up the place, literally enjoys the home environment (the bath, the kitchen, the food, the bed, etc.) The observant dilemma being he obviously appreciates the house/home more than the owners/occupants.
There is 'suspense' - we'd worry what will happen to him, to him and her, and as the worse fear may arise (just like any cops and robbers film), can true justice prevail after all? Just when you think you figured out what's going on, w-d Kim gives us something more to think about. Elements that we don't expect - we're in awe at the concept and perspective presented to us, the viewer. It's quite extraordinary, really. And be afraid not, it will be rewarding, satisfying somehow, and you just might savor that last moment of magic between the two lead characters, her and him. The strength of the two leads portraying to perfection at sublimated tempo by Lee Seung-Yeon (as Sun-Hwa the woman) and Jae Hee (as Tae-Suk the man) is truly a godsend (both in their debut performances).
Once again, bravo to Sony Pictures Classics for the choice distribution of this film. Check out the Official Site for Director's Statement and a detail synopsis (best to do this after seeing the film.) "Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter and Spring" (2003) is another film by w-d Kim, exquisite in cinematic visual and integral in storyline experience. (For non-golfers, the title "3-Iron" refers to golf club.)
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