19 items from 2014
Though it boasts a full complement of brutal gangsters, black-suited goons, morally compromised good guys, explosive action sequences and tightly knit, unpredictable scripting, what finally elevates “New World” well above similarly accomplished Korean actioners is Hwang Jeong-min’s high-octane performance as a volatile contender in a three-way power struggle to control Korea’s largest corporate crime syndicate. This is only the second helming gig for Park Hoon-jung, the talented screenwriter of “I Saw the Devil” and “The Unjust,” and he demonstrates equally strong directorial chops. Despite some excellent reviews, the New York Asian Film Festival entry failed to fully cross over in its limited 2013 Stateside release.
After the suspicious death of the Goldmoon crime syndicate’s head honcho (his car blindsided by a speeding truck), contentious factions vie for succession. Two polar opposites locked in mutual hatred — the controlled, ruthless Lee Jeong-gu (Park Seong-ung), in charge of operations in Seoul, »
- Ronnie Scheib
2014 has already seen some very good films released, with the likes of Boyhood, The Fault in Our Stars, X-Men: Days of Future Past and others doing great business and turning heads in the process. The remainder of 2014 will also see a large number of film releases, and some of those are highly intriguing. Let’s take a look at ten of the films that I, personally, am excited for in the second half of 2014.
Director, James Gunn, tasselled my hair playfully when he put a little independent film named “Super” on the table in 2010, an underrated Rainn Wilson fronted comedy drama about a guy who thinks that god is telling him to fight crime. When I heard that Gunn was bringing his sense of humour and action to Guardians of the Galaxy my interest hit a high note. With a cast including the enjoyable everyman Chris Pratt »
- Chris Cummings
How can a film exist somewhere between being an ambitious Hollywood oddity and a wacky hot mess of a film? Days after seeing Luc Besson’s new film Lucy I’m still trying to figure this out. Going into a Besson film you have to expect a strong female-centered action-fest. The French director has made a career of this going back to La Femme Nikita, to The Fifth Element, all the way to his more recent Indiana Jones and Allan Quatermain inspired period piece The Extraordinary Adventure Of Adele Blanc-sec (which exists relatively unnoticed and is worth checking out if you’re a fan of pulp adventure stories). However Lucy kind of exists in a different conversation than these previously mentioned films for a lot of reasons. First of all, despite her stunning features, Johansson’s Lucy is nowhere near as memorable as some of the leads in these other films. »
- Michael Haffner
If you're hung up on the fact Lucy perpetuates the myth humans only use 10% of their brain then I don't know why you're reading this review. However, if you thought Transcendence was a talky bore and wish there had been more action and less jibber-jabber then you might want to stick around since the two films essentially approach the idea of the singularity, but get there using dramatically different means. Directed by Luc Besson (The Professional, The Fifth Element), Lucy tells the story of the title character, played by Scarlett Johansson with all the wooden acuity of Keanu Reeves, as she is forced into serving as a drug mule, carrying a package of a new drug next to her intestines. Unfortunately for her, when she's kicked in the stomach a small amount of the drug leaks into her system, giving her abilities beyond that of a "normal" human being and »
- Brad Brevet
Release date: 25th July 2014 (America)
Lucy is the latest movie to star the brilliant and very talented Choi Min-Sik (Old Boy, I Saw The Devil). When i first seen Old Boy, i knew Choi would become a great figure in the movie world and so far he continues to do just that. Lucy also stars the beautiful Scarlett Johansson and Oscar winner Morgan Freeman.
The movie is directed by Luc Besson, he was nominated for best director in the past for movies such as “Léon: The Professional” and “The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc”, but won best director and french director for the 1997 hit movie “The Fifth Element”.
In a world run by the mob, street gangs, drug addicts, and corrupt cops, Lucy (Scarlett Johansson) is a woman living in Taipei, Taiwan who is forced to work as a drug mule for the mob. A drug implanted »
A number of Sound On Sight editors and contributors are geographically fortunate enough to make the Fantasia Film Festival an annual must-attend event. I have never been to the festival, but have followed it from afar since it landed on my radar years ago when a well-received short film I had a major acting role in called My Sweet Satan, played there.
This year’s lineup of films strikes me as substantially more intriguing than the programs of the last couple of years. Given Fantasia’s staggering breadth of programming spread across multiple weeks, the challenge is in trying to narrow a ‘most anticipated’ list down to just five films. My picks, in alphabetical order, are as follows.
Among the Living
Also known as Aux yeux des vivants (The Eyes of the Living), the third feature film from the outstanding »
- Terek Puckett
South Korean auteur Kim Ki-duk's latest film, "One on One," is set to open this year's edition of Venice Days, the Venice Film Festival sidebar modeled on the Cannes Directors' Fortnight. This is his 20th film, a revenge mystery centered on the Shadows Sect, a group of seven assassins out for blood after a female student is kidnapped, raped and murdered. It stars Ma Dong-seok ("The Good, the Bad and the Weird") as well as Kim Yeong-min ("I Saw the Devil"). Venice Days runs August 27-September 6 alongside the Venice Film Festival which, in 2012, awarded Kim Ki-duk its top prize, the Golden Lion, for his violent mother-son drama "Pieta." Between that film and now, "One on One," Kim directed hot festival title "Moebius," another brilliantly disturbing film maudit about icky family relations. Ram Releasing will distribute "Moebius" in 2014. Watch the trailer for "One on One" below. No word yet on a »
- Ryan Lattanzio
The South Korean thriller Hide and Seek became the seventh local film to reach the 5 million admissions mark last year in its homeland. Now it's on its way to Us home video, and we've got your chance to score a copy on us!
To enter for your chance to win, just send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org including your Full Name And Mailing Address. We’ll take care of the rest.
This contest will end on at 12:01 Am Pt on June 9th.
Hide and Seek Release Details
Ram Releasing, a division of arthouse distributor Film Movement, is handling the DVD release of Hide And Seek, Jung Huh’s critically acclaimed thriller and one of the highest grossing films at the South Korean Box office in 2013. Nominated for two Blue Dragon Film Awards, including Best Actress for Jung-hee Moon and Best New Director, Hide And Seek is an »
- Steve Barton
The makers of Ek Villain are perplexed. For unexplained reasons, there is a small online faction that has suddenly started alleging that the Mohit Suri-directed film is similar in certain parts to the Korean film, I Saw The Devil. The assumptions began after the official new trailer of Ek Villain was released online recently.
However, it is apparent that there is not even an ounce of similarity between the two films.
"If the presence of a serial killer in both the films makes the script a candidate for plagiarism then even Kamal Haasan's Vettaiyaadu Vilaiyaadu could fall in the same bracket. Oh yes, add Rajesh Khanna's Red Rose to the list too. Weren't the central antagonists in each of these films deriving pleasure out of killing? By that logic, each of these films is lifted," says a senior crew member in an irate tone.
The suspicion around »
- Bollywood Hungama News Network
We’re back with another edition of the Indie Spotlight, highlighting recent independent horror news sent our way. Today’s feature includes the Blood Widow trailer and release details, Vengeance Fest lineup details, multiple trailers, and more:
Photos, Release Details, and Trailer for Blood Widow: “One of America’s foremost homes for horror, Midnight Releasing has picked up the highly anticipated fright-flick Blood Widow. The Jeremiah Buckhalt-directed slasher will be available on – among other outlets – Redbox on June 3rd, 2014.
A bloody, creepy cocktail that blends the wickedness of A Nightmare on Elm Street with the dark, macabre seasoning of Candyman, Blood Widow introduces us to horror’s next major slasher icon – and she’s not going away anytime soon!
After buying a nice house in the country, Laurie and Hugh, »
- Tamika Jones
The South Korean thriller Hide and Seek became the seventh local film to reach the 5 million admissions mark last year in its homeland. Now it's on its way to home video and we've got the artwork and details for you! Dig it!
From the Press Release
Ram Releasing, a division of arthouse distributor Film Movement, announces the DVD release of Hide And Seek, Jung Huh’s critically acclaimed thriller and one of the highest grossing films at the South Korean Box office in 2013. Nominated for two Blue Dragon Film Awards, including Best Actress for Jung-hee Moon and Best New Director, Hide And Seek is an electrifying debut by writer/director Jung, resulting in a new kind of South Korean thriller that recalls the work of such acclaimed modern masters as Kim-Ji Woon (I Saw The Devil) and Na Hong-Jin (The Chaser).
Hide And Seek comes to DVD on June »
- Steve Barton
Three actors have joined Terminator: Genesis, and one of them might play a big role in Alan Taylor's new film. THR is reporting Byung-hun Lee (both G.I. Joe flicks, I Saw The Devil), Michael Gladis (Mad Men, Knights Of Badassdom) and Sandrine Holt (House of Cards, Underworld: Awakening) will star in the upcoming movie. There aren't any details on Michael Gladis' role, however Deadline has learned Sandrine Holt will play Detective Cheung, who arrests Sarah Connor and »
- Jesse Giroux
Byung-hun Lee ("G.I. Joe," "I Saw the Devil"), Michael Gladis ("Mad Men") and Sandrine Holt ("House of Cards") have all joined the cast of the action franchise reboot "Terminator: Genesis" for Skydance and Paramount.
Arnold Schwarzenegger, Emilia Clarke, Jai Courtney, Jason Clarke, J.K. Simmons and Dayo Okeniyi in the Alan Taylor-directed film. The roles for the three new actors are being kept secret, but Lee's role is said to be a key one.
The film, the first of a proposed new trilogy, aims to be a continuation of the first two James Cameron films and will take into consideration the time passed.
Meanwhile, dropped in an article this past Friday on Deadline (so it's apparently Not an April Fool), comes the suggestion that producers are planning a back-to-back nine-month shoot of the second and third installments in this proposed trilogy. A lot though would depend upon Genesis' box-office returns. »
- Garth Franklin
Everyone has that one cinematic brawl that sticks with him or her. They buy special edition Blu-rays to watch the glorious scenes in high definition, wear shirts sporting their favorite competitor, and even engage in debates with other fans about which character they think would win if the duel occurred in real life. With The Raid 2 coming out soon, what better time to look back on best fight scenes that genre films have to offer? Read on to see which conflicts make the list, and keep an eye out for The Raid 2, which is set to release on March 28th, 2014. 20. Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan - Rooftop Scene Although it may seem a little campy, Julius deserves a ton of credit for being one of the only people to stand up and fight Jason Voorhees, instead of just running away. Julius lands nearly all of his blows, »
- Kalyn Corrigan
Director: Hwang In Ho.
Starring: Lee Min Ki, Kim Go Eun, Kim Roi Ha, Ahn Seo Hyeon, Kim Boo Seon.
Running Time: 113 minutes.
Synopsis: A mentally slow girl tries to take find the suspected murderer of her missing sister.
South Korea have given us more fantastic revenge thrillers than you can shake a bloody stick at. I Saw The Devil, Oldboy, Bedevilled, The Chaser, the list goes on and on. That being said, is there really anywhere new to go with the genre? Can it possibly be any more shocking and interesting than what we’ve already come up against? The answer is a surprising ‘yes’, as this latest effort proves in abundance.
If you’ve ever sat down and become angry at the ridiculous decisions made by characters in peril, then Monster has a new twist to offer, with its two main characters – caught in a game of cat »
- Luke Ryan Baldock
South Korea loves a good revenge tale and even when you would think such greats such as I Saw The Devil and Bedevilled have pushed the boundaries as far as they will go, another film rises to the challenge. In Hwang In Ho’s follow-up to the delightfully bizarre Spellbound, a serial killer meets his match when the mentally slow but quick to anger sister of one of his victims goes all out after revenge. As the trailer proclaims “Hide and seek, or die”, this looks to be a great twist on the cat and mouse genre with the tables turned against the murderer.
In Monster, Lee Min Ki plays the killer Tae Soo, while Kim Go Eun is Bok Soon, the girl who may very well be his match. It looks absurd, it looks violent, and it looks very enjoyable indeed. The film is released in South Korea on »
- Luke Ryan Baldock
With The Raid 2: Berandal making its premiere at the Sundance Film Festival this week (to rave reviews, I might add), I thought it pertinent to look back at a slew of films which nailed the cathartic, bone-snapping brilliance of a standard fight scene. And I’m not just talking martial arts (though there are one or two of those herein); I’m talking cross-genre (and in some cases, cross medium) exploits of broken bones, busted teeth and spilled blood.
While the films listed aren’t the absolute be-all-end-all of fight sequences, to me these were standout moments of either sheer badassery or emotional heft. There are hundreds more to add, but the following nine flicks (in no particular order) are just a few which smacked me around in the best possible way.
Beware, spoilers obviously follow.
In the eternal words of Killer Instinct’s gravel-throated announcer… »
- Bryan Yentz
Revenge is often a dish best served cold, but while rifling through collections of revenge thrillers from different countries, you definitely get the feeling that different nations have added spices and flavors. Some like their revenge with a happy ending, others like it bleak and nasty, but no matter how you swing it, the overall concept of revenge is a theme that any person can understand. We’ve seen American revenge films, Korean versions, Japanese versions – but are you ready for the Israeli interpretation of revenge?
Aharon Keshales and Navot Papushado, the lunatics behind Rabies, are being awarded some pretty serious acclaim for their second feature Big Bad Wolves, a revenge thriller with an Israeli twist. Is it safe? Does it play by the rules? Well, these two are responsible for creating the first Israeli horror film in Rabies, and for their second genre release, our filmmakers feel perfectly comfortable delivering double the genre insanity. »
- Matt Donato
South Korea produces a higher consistency of quality action-thrillers than any other country. Fact? Opinion? Either way it’s true to me. The last few years alone have seen a barrage of near-instant classics including The Man From Nowhere, The Chaser, The Yellow Sea, A Company Man, Confession of Murder, Secret Reunion, I Saw the Devil, and more. Their success comes from a combination of attitude and aesthetic with the other common element being some stellar fight/action choreography. The most recent film hoping to join the ranks of the ones above is The Suspect. Director Won Shin-yeon‘s latest comes six years after his solid 2007 thriller, Seven Days, but unlike that one this appears to have a somewhat political bent. The story follows a North Korean defector now living in the South who is forced on the run after he’s accused of a triple murder. All is not as it seems though, and »
- Rob Hunter
19 items from 2014
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