I Saw the Devil [Import]
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I Saw the Devil
Korean director Kim Ji-woon first garnered a reputation as an ace assimilator of outside styles, most notably for the ickily Freudian J-horror thriller A Tale of Two Sisters and the monumentally goofy spaghetti Western pastiche The Good, the Bad, the Weird. I Saw the Devil finds the filmmaker moving towards a style much closer to home--namely the Korean revenge thriller, best typified by movies such as Oldboy, Memories of Murder, and Nowhere to Hide--with results that vary between masterfully staged and punishingly gross. Beginning with an impeccably uneasy snowbound abduction scene, the story follows a dashing secret agent (Byung-hun Lee) sworn to track down the murderer of his pregnant fiancée. Upon finding the maniac (Oldboy's majestically disheveled Min-sik Choi), he implants him with a tracking device and proceeds to follow him across the country, swooping in to torture him at random intervals. Clocking in at 144 minutes, Ji-woon's film clearly believes in a more-is-more policy, with ideas about the futility of revenge and the dangers of staring into the abyss taken to their graphic extremes. Viewers with strong constitutions will find much to chew on. Anyone else, however, should be prepared to dive behind the couch at a moment's notice. --Andrew Wright
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Minor Spoilers ahead: "I Saw the Devil" is about a man (Kim Soo-hyeon) whose fiance is murdered by a serial killer. The next 2 hours are spent with him hunting and attacking (over and over, in very creative and gruesome ways) the man who killed his fiance, Kyung-chul (played by the masterful Min-sik Choi). There's no real twist (like the big one in Oldboy that causes everyone I've ever known that watched it to say "holy ****!"), you're not trying to figure anything out, this is the plot and it's laid out for you very early on, though there are times throughout the film where you wonder who will wind up winning out in end as each man gains and loses the upper hand several times (and there is a clear winner).
Critics of the film feel that the movie is excessive in the violence, and they feel the choices made by the characters are quite questionable (especially at the end), but essentially it delivers a similar message that other Korean revenge films have: Revenge isn't satisfying. If you're a fan of blood and creative violence in cinema however, you'll like this, but it will make even the most hardened of gore fans squirm (the Achilles tendon scene, the knife in the hand scene, the cab fight, etc). This is Korean cinema at its least subtle... violent with a touch of very dark humour, just the way I like it.
The movie starts out with a woman stranded on a highway in the snow. She has a wrecker coming and is talking on her cell to her husband, a secret agent who watches Liam Neeson films. He is also conducting business. At one point he excuses himself to go to the restroom so he can sing to her on the phone. The next thing you know she is bludgeoned and dragged to a location where she is stripped and chained. The man doesn't torture her, just simply kills her. We find out that not only is he a psycho, but generally socially dysfunctional.
Her husband takes a leave from work and goes and plays "Dirty Harry" on every Korean pervert until he finds the killer in the act of raping a girl. Apparently the killer disrobes, rapes and then murders his victims, although he kills men too. He stops the rape and beats up the killer, but lets him go. The killer now has a bug and tracking device on him. Our Korean Dirty Harry is able to follow him around. When the killer/rapist is in the middle of an act, our Korean Dirty Harry shows up, beats the guys up and cuts on him. He is now wearing a soccer jersey so he can claim he got his wounds playing soccer in order to get medical attention, perhaps intended as a joke.
Nudity and rape, although the rape scenes are far less graphic than our 70's films. The translation was rather smooth and kudos for some originality.
make of the movie.so i went ahead and bought it.even though i don't let most review's influence
me in making my puchase.so when i finished watching it.i was blown away by the sher terror of this
guy.that the killer is not gonna get away with killing his girlfriend.the way he beat the crap out
of him then lets him go then beat him again but in the mean time.he the killer is Reeking havoc on
other people. but this is the best revenge movie hands down..I Saw the Devil [Blu-ray]
Man oh man I can’t believe the uneducated ness of some people, just because it’s not
American or French, they can’t like it, well if they kill people different in Asia than they do
in America I would really like to know, the last time I check, I think this movie rest it’s Loral's
on revenge and revenge only, they have got to be seeing something else that I missed,
if the Asian face on the front didn't give it away,i don't think i'd be watching, you'd think,
Most recent customer reviews
This movie is so awesome and sure keep`s you on your toe`s and does a real good job the main Character.Published 20 months ago by muskyhunter1
The movie is coming from a country with different culture. We cannot compare this story with a french or american movie. Read morePublished on June 21 2013 by Gilles Brousseau
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