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Breathless (2008)

Ddongpari (original title)
Not Rated | | Crime, Drama | 16 April 2009 (South Korea)
A bitter loan shark strikes a friendship with a troubled schoolgirl as he faces his own troubled past with his abusive father.


Ik-joon Yang


Ik-joon Yang
30 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Kkobbi Kim ... Yeon-hee
Hwan Lee Hwan Lee ... Young-jae
Ik-joon Yang Ik-joon Yang ... Sang-hoon
Jeong-soon Park Jeong-soon Park ... Seung-chul
Seung-Yun Lee Seung-Yun Lee ... Hyeon-seo
Hee-soo Kim Hee-soo Kim ... Hyung-in
Jin-sook Lee Jin-sook Lee ... Sang-hoon's Mother
Yong-min Choi Yong-min Choi ... Hyeong-seok
Hae-yeon Kil Hae-yeon Kil ... Yeon-hee's Mother
Sang-won Kim Sang-won Kim ... Young Sang-hoon
Seon-ae Ji Seon-ae Ji ... Sang-hoon's Younger Sister / Jun-hee
Man-sik Jeong Man-sik Jeong ... Man-sik
Seung-Hoon Yoon Seung-Hoon Yoon ... Hwan-gyu
Jee-hye Oh Jee-hye Oh ... Yeon-hee's Homeroom Teacher
Seung-il Hong Seung-il Hong ... Beating Man


A bitter loan shark strikes a friendship with a troubled schoolgirl as he faces his own troubled past with his abusive father.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


Sang-hoon: [after beating up an abusive husband/father] Fathers in this country's all fucked up. They're pathetic fucks but when it comes to family, they're Kim Il-sung. Isn't that right, fucker? Think you're Kim Il-sung?
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References Scream (1996) See more »

User Reviews

An Insightful Film Well Played Out
8 December 2010 | by trentreid-1See all my reviews

Breathless will probably garner comparisons to early Scorsese, considering the subject matter. It is not that good, but neither is it that derivative. If anything, it favorably reminded me of the later TV work of Alan Clarke. Despite the summary above, it is not about characters seeking redemption, but family and solace from a cycle of criminal abuse fueled by misplaced ancestral reverence. Without giving away the end, it is more about insight gained by sacrifice that plays upon cyclical reincarnation themes than a solitary quest towards forgiveness.

The multi-talented Yang Ik-Joon does a great job portraying a man so damaged that he expresses affection for a child by repeatedly shoving his head and calling him a bastard. Whether you find it disturbing or funny, the gradual manner in which the characters' darker and more intimate aspects are revealed is excellent.

Instead of credulous explication, back-story or flashbacks, the relationships emerge out of frankly rude and often violent interactions which also advance the plot. I might have had a few gripes about the cinematography, especially in relation to scenes of violence. I kind of expected a bit more from Yang Ik-Joon in this regard. But for a film by an actor as first-time director/writer/editor/star, this is incredibly good.

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Official Sites:

Official site [France]


South Korea



Release Date:

16 April 2009 (South Korea) See more »

Also Known As:

Breathless See more »


Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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