My Way begins with the conventional "small-town girl livin' in a lonely (corporate) world." Yet instead of taking the midnight train, Rebekah Starr trades her pants-suit for a Les Paul, ... See full summary »
Inspired by a true story. Jun Shik works for Tatsuo's grandfather's farm while Korea is colonized by Japan, but he has a dream to participate in Tokyo Olympics as a marathon runner. Tatsuo also aims to become a marathon runner, so the two are in rivalry. But war breaks out and they both are forced to enlist in the army. Tatsuo becomes the head of defense in Jun Shik's unit and he devises a scheme but fails. Jun Shik and Tatsuo are captured by the Soviets. They run away but soon are captured by Germans and forced to separate. In 1944, they meet again at the shores of Normandy.Written by
The German officer addressing the German troops at Normandy is played by former German judoka Alexander von der Groeben (billed in the closing titles as Alexander Graf von der Groeben). Participant of the Olympic Games 1984 and 1988, and two times European champion in 1984 and 1985. See more »
The B-17 bombers attacking the beach seem to carry exactly the same markings; there are no differences in the serial numbers. See more »
Greetings again from the darkness. Was anxious to see a big-budget Korean take on WWII, and overall came away impressed ... despite the shortcomings and annoyances. My history with Korean films have been limited to small, intimate stories told with quiet manner, and frenetic action flicks with sub-standard stunt work. Director and co-writer Je-kyu Kang attempts to combine an intimate story of two young men with an epic war film with a record body count and excruciatingly frequent number of cuts/edits.
The movie starts off by showing us how the lives of two boys first intersect. Jun-shik Kim (by Dong-gun Jong) is a farmer's son whose dad works on the estate of Tatsuo Hasegawa's (Jo Odagiri) grandfather. A wide class difference separates the boys, but their love of running generates a severe feud ... a rivalry that won't die easily. All of this takes place in Japan-occupied Korea, and it's clear early on that the filmmaker sets out to defend all Korean actions.
Inspired by a real life 1944 photo that shows a Korean soldier being captured while wearing a Nazi uniform, the back-story here is as strange and complex as any you have seen ... unfortunately, it is handled with the manipulative touch of a sledge hammer. As their marathon-running rivalry reaches a crescendo, both boys are drawn into the Japanese Army, albeit via substantially different routes. Tatsuo is an officer, while Jun-shik is an enslaved line soldier. Their bitter rivalry does not stop for a little thing like WWII and it leads to many moments of near insanity.
What really is impressive about the film is the three main battle scenes, especially the storming of Normandy Beach. If you have seen Saving Private Ryan, then you know the model ... however, this one takes it even further. It is intense, loud and brutal. The question of whether the rivalry can survive capture by Russians and then Nazi's, or whether survival instincts take over is really the heart of the story.
As terrific as the battle scenes are, it is impossible not to mention the hyper-editing that lasts most of the film's 142 minutes. It is hard on the senses and makes the action difficult to follow ... which is a shame for a film that offers so much realism in war scenes. Still, it's not an easy film to watch and we care enough about the two characters to put up with the eyeball attack we get in most scenes.
20 of 31 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this