In 1636, the Qing dynasty attacks Joseon. King Injo and his retainers, including Choi Myung-kil and Kim Sang-hun, hide in the mountain fortress city of Namhansanseong. They are isolated from the outside. Meanwhile, Choi Myung-kil insists that they enter into negotiations with the Qing dynasty, but Kim Sang-hun proposes that they keep fighting.
Josean (Korean) King Injo (Park Hae-il) is being attacked by the Qing, led by the Khan. He retreats to a mountain fortress in deep winter, and listens as Interior Minister Choi (Lee Byung-hun) argues with the Prime Minister (Sung Hyun-soo) about whether to negotiate or fight. Meanwhile, the fortress villagers and soldiers, including blacksmith- turned-recruit Nal-soe (Go Soo) and his brother are slowly starving and freezing to death, and it is turning out to be a long, long winter.... This film is based on Korean history in the 17th Century, when China ruled much of the peninsula and in turn was being menaced by the Qing, the forces of Genghis Khan's empire. Overall, "The Fortress" points out the futility of war and, a bit unexpectedly, also that life in the end will prevail (just not for everyone). The film is quite long at about 2 1/2 hours, but it's beautifully drawn and especially interesting to see in the middle of a very hot summer; all the scenes of snowstorms made me feel a tad chilly, even!
21 of 29 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this