Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Movie Review: I Saw the Devil

I Saw the Devil is a profile of evil incarnate. This statement doesn't do it justice. The film is a gruesome depiction of the worst excesses of the human mind...

Speaking of worst excesses, I Saw the Devil is the latest from Korea that pulls no punches when it comes to painting horrific images. It's the kind of movie that only Korean filmmakers excel at -- the visual vomit makes Hollywood's most demented creation look like a Saturday morning cartoon.

There was one scene that almost made me throw up, a first for me. And I've seen a LOT of disgusting horror films.

American = Derivative. Japanese = Anime. Korean = Cinematic Depravity.

The story revolves around a school bus driver named Kyung-chul. He's a sexual sadist and a serial killer and a cannibal. At the beginning of the film, he targets the daughter of a retired police chief and fiancée of an elite secret agent name Soo-hyun. In the scene that I referred to above, Kyung-chul takes a meat cleaver and chops her up into pieces like you would find in a butcher shop.

When Soo-hyun (who looks an awful lot like Daniel Dae Kim from Lost and Hawaii Five-O) identifies the killer, he takes his revenge to an epic scale. Who is the monster in the film?

At 2:24 long, this film contains a number of profound plot twists. It's very engaging.

By the way, Min-sik Choi, who plays Kyung-chul, also played the villain in Oldboy and Lady Vengeance, two films that I enjoyed. I'm just guessing, but I think he needs to expand his repertoire before he becomes stereotyped.

Major Thumbs Up. Highly recommended. But I strongly advise you to steel yourself before entering the movie theatre...

And just a minor point: Why am I not having nightmares? What is wrong with me??

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