Struggling to support herself and teenage daughter, widow Yeon-ju rents out the second floor of her home to Chang-In, who claims to be a novelist working on a new book. The neighbors ... See full summary »
Struggling to support herself and teenage daughter, widow Yeon-ju rents out the second floor of her home to Chang-In, who claims to be a novelist working on a new book. The neighbors suspect Chang-In's true identity, as he spends an inordinate time in Yeon-ju's quarters whenever he's left home alone. A battle of wits, charm and various tensions ensue with the trio living under one roof, each harboring their own elaborate motives. Written by
Though one could compare to the classic British comedy "The Ladykillers," Jae Gon Son's film "Villain and Widow" is quite a delight for Korean movie lovers. It borrows elements from genres like comedy, romance, and drama to make a film that doesn't quite fit in any genre but is quite satisfying in the end.
A cultural artifact smuggler tells his partner (Suk-kyu Han) that he obtains a very precious tea cup from China, but hides it in his home without his family knowing it. In a hilarious manner he passes away while his partner is hauled away to jail yet is the only one who knows the secret. Few years pass, the widow (Hye-su Kim) and her teenage daughter are in desperate financial straits and want to rent out the now vacant room in their house to help pay their debts. In a deal with a rich person who wants the cup for his gallery, Suk-kyu Han moves in with an alias and proceeds to search for the tea cup.
What happens next is quite surprising, with director Jae Gon Son delving into serious themes like suicide, depression, and dysfunctional family relationships yet maintaining light-hearted elements. Though the ending seems inevitable, I give credit to Jae Gon Son for an ending that is not quite a happy ending and yet suitable for the smuggler and the widow. If you are reading this, then it is most likely you have an interest in this film and I say go see it now!
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