Thursday, April 23, 2009

I Think I Like You, South Korea

I'm known for publicly denouncing entire cultures, or jumping wildly overboard for them. In the case of South Korea, I have jumped wildly overboard. Starting with the comedy-horror The Host, and continuing with other Bong Joon-Ho films Memories of Murder and his segment of Tokyo!, and most recently Park Chan-Wook's Joint Security Area, I have yet to watch a contemporary South Korean film I didn't like. 

What does this mean? It probably means I really like Bong Joon-Ho, and probably like Park Chan-Wook. The trailers for their upcoming films have a say in this crazy idea. 

For Bong Joon-Ho? Some sort of crime drama where a mother has to defend her murderer son. Accused of murder, anyway.  The trailer isn't in English. Exciting!:

Bong's dealt with murder before. In Memories of Murder. That's all about murder. I'm sure he knows what he's doing with this one. As for Park Chan-Wook, I haven't actually seen much of his work. I watched part of Oldboy without subtitles, and quit because the premise is confusing enough, and far worse without knowing what they're saying. I hear great things about him, and the trailer for his next film, about a vampire, and another vampire, looks awesome. With Let the Right One In, and soon this, it looks like the age of the respectable vampire is upon us. Why can't we have a good domestic vampire film? Anyway, trailer. With no subtitles!:

I say it looks incredible. My mission now? Find more South Korean films I like. And some I don't. When it came to me hating Italy, I'd only seen four Italian films, three of which I didn't care for. Then I saw a batch I couldn't like more. Claiming to hate the cinema of an entire cinema is fun, but isn't it nicer to say you love the entire culture? Of course it is. 

 - Eric T. Voigt, Wanted To Get That Off My Chest

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