Joong-ho is a dirty detective turned pimp in financial trouble as several of his girls have recently disappeared without clearing their debts. While trying to track them down, he finds a ... See full summary »
After thirteen and half years in prison for kidnapping and murdering the boy Park Won-mo, Geum-ja Lee is released and tries to fix her life. She finds a job in a bakery; she orders the ... See full summary »
In 1986, in the province of Gyunggi, in South Korea, a second young and beautiful woman is found dead, raped and tied and gagged with her underwear. Detective Park Doo-Man and Detective Cho... See full summary »
Three emotionally abused people from the fringes of society get locked in a convoluted love triangle. Yuu, a Catholic boy searching for true love ends up taking erotic photographs of women ... See full summary »
Shou's father Norio finds his son in a rather meaningless existence in Tokyo dominated by alcohol and porn videos. Having left home two years earlier to pursue life as a musician, Shou has ... See full summary »
Makes Lionel Shriver's "We need to Talk About Kevin" look "normal" ...
Lionel Shriver's novel, We need to talk about Kevin, went places where few novelists had dared to venture; she did a great job - that entire stretch where Kevin goes crazy was skillfully written and Ms.Shriver deserved the Orange prize. However, director Nakashima has pushed the boundaries further in this impressively shot and directed movie.
Confessions begins with a long-drawn lecture from Yuko Moriguchi, a teacher at a school somewhere in Japan. Ms.Moriguchi is about to leave the school; but before that, she wants to impart one final lesson - on the value of life. In doing so, she shocks her students with a revelation: her young daughter (very young, heart-wrenchingly young), whose death the police concluded was an accident, was intentionally murdered by two of her own students. She not only reveals the murderers' identity but also explains how she plans to take revenge on those students. This brilliant monologue that lasts for half-an-hour is the best part of the movie; it is wonderfully held together by Takaka Matsu's restrained performance.
Acts II and III present details of Moriguchi's actual scheme; it isn't as pedestrian as announced in class - it is much more devious and cruel. The movie scores because it creates an uneasy tension in the minds of the viewer: we realize that the kids' deeds are evil and are worthy of severe punishment. Hence, we don't find fault with the Mother's acts. However, it is very difficult for us to believe that it is their Teacher who is orchestrating these devious acts of revenge. It is in creating this constant discomfort that the writer's genius shines through.
The director extracts brilliant performances from the entire cast. I wonder how he worked with those two kids - how did he train them? The cinematography is high on aesthetics and adequately conveys the required dark mood. I however thought the final sequences (flames, blasts) could have been toned down a few notches.
While some might categorize this as a psychological revenge drama (which it is), I tend to view it more as a strong statement on the mental state of today's children and how they are affected by developments at home and relationships at places of education. It isn't a pleasant state of affairs, and Nakashima has conveyed so much in his unflinching dark- dark-dark drama.
54 of 62 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?