4 items from 2014
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
4 items from 2014
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