Saturday 26 July 2008

Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance [2002]

Park Chan-Wook’s acclaimed Vengeance Trilogy got a fabulous kick-start by Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance. The movie essentially comprises of multiple violent revenge tales presented in a single, scintillating package. A mute blue collar guy, in desperate need of money to get kidney transplant for his ailing sister, opts to sell his kidney at the black market in return for money, but gets robbed in the process. Conspiring with his politically active girlfriend, he decides to kidnap his boss’ daughter; but as is bound to happen, it goes horribly wrong. What follows is quintessential Park Chan-Wook. Even though it is a revenge movie, it very nearly missed being a thriller thanks to its lazy pace and philosophical tone. The long shots, screeching silences and detailed depictions of seemingly mundane events, are memorably contrasted with sudden bursts of nerve-wracking violence, kinetic action and black humour. A very well made movie, it also acts as a great precursor (and an introduction for those uninitiated to Park’s quirky style of filmmaking) to his brilliant masterpiece Oldboy and the poetic climax Sympathy for Lady Vengeance.

To read a detailed review by me on the complete Vengeance Trilogy, click here.

Director: Park Chan-Wook
Genre: Crime Thriller/Black Comedy/Revenge Movie/Psychological Drama
Language: Korean
Country: South Korea

1 comment:

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I have been interested in Korean movie industry because they are getting really good. Thanks for the recommendation. I will give it a try.