Showing posts with label the host. Show all posts
Showing posts with label the host. Show all posts

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

KCN: Korean Films Sell 100 Million Tickets in 2012 + New Footage for The Host 2 (11/15-11/21, 2012)

Korean film industry hits yet another major milestone in 2012 while some footage for the long-awaited sequel to The Host (2006) drops out of nowhere. However, outside of these items and a number of small festival tidbits, it wasn't a big week for Korean film news.


First Horrific Footage for The Host 2
No beating around the bush here! A clip of the long-awaited Korean horror flick The Host 2 goes straight for the jugular with the hungry creature wrecking havoc upon an unsuspecting family, tearing up on a moving truck, and then chasing two innocent children for a quick snack. Oh my, I wouldn't want to be in the shoes of these kids when the shit hits the fan. (Twitch, November 20, 2012)

Korean Films Draw Over 100 Million Viewers This Year
Korean movies have drawn over 100 million viewers in 2012. The Korean Film Council on Monday said the number of people watching Korean films this year totaled 99.61 million as of Sunday. "Since at least 200,000 people on average watch Korean movies on a weekday, the 100-million mark will be reached on Tuesday," a council spokesman said. (The Chosun Ilbo, November 20, 2012)

Friday, August 10, 2012

Weekly Review Round-up (08/04-08/10, 2012)

Lots of great big broadsheet writeups for a variety of films this week and still more streaming in from PiFan and other festivals around the world, not least Fantasia where Doomsday Book recently walked away with the top prize.


(Hangul Celluloid, August 6, 2012)

(Global Comment, August 7, 2012)

(VCinema, August 9, 2012)

Doomsday Book

Friday, July 13, 2012

Weekly Review Round-up (07/09-07/13, 2012)

Lots more NYAFF coverage this week and an early review for incoming blockbuster The Thieves. Next week PiFan gets underway so get ready for plenty of new genre release reviews!


(The Korea Times, July 11, 2012)

Friday, January 6, 2012

Weekly Review Round-up (12/31, 2011 - 01/06, 2012)

For the first WEEKLY REVIEW ROUND-UP of 2012, a few reviews for new releases in Korea and a lot of pieces on older Korean films which is always nice to see.


(The Korea Times, January 4, 2012)


(The Korea Times, December 29, 2011)


(, January 4, 2012)

(Modern Korean Cinema, January 5, 2012)

(Modern Korean Cinema, January 3, 2012)

(Rainy Day Movies, January 3, 2012)

(Init_Scenes, January 4, 2012)

(Asian Movie Web, January 2, 2012)

(Init_Scenes, January 3, 2012)

(New Korean Cinema, January 4, 2012)


(Asian Movie Pulse, January 3, 2012)

(Hanguk Yeonghwa, January 4, 2012)


(Init_Scenes, December 31, 2011)

(UnitedKpop, December 31, 2011)

Death Bell, 2008
(Twitch, January 4, 2012)

(Hanguk Yeonghwa, January 2, 2012)

(North Korean Films, January 3, 2012)

(, January 1, 2012)

Silmido, 2003
(, January 3, 2012)

Taegugki, 2004
(Nerdlocker, January 5, 2012)

(Rainy Day Movies, January 4, 2012)

The Host, 2006
(Film in Asian, January 4, 2012)

(Hanguk Yeonghwa, January 5, 2012)

The Weekly Review Round-up is a weekly feature which brings together all available reviews of Korean films in the English language (and sometimes French) that have recently appeared on the internet. It is by no means a comprehensive feature and additions are welcome (email pierceconran [at] gmail [dot] com). It appears every Friday morning (GMT+1) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at Korean Cinema News, and the Korean Box Office UpdateReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

To keep up with the best in Korean film you can sign up to our RSS Feed, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Weekly Review Round-up (11/12-11/18, 2011)

A wide array of films reviewed this week, many due to the just-wrapped London Korean Film Festival.


A Better Tomorrow

(SBCC Film Reviews, November 14, 2011)

(, November 15, 2011)

(Hanguk Yeonghwa, November 15, 2011)

(Alive Not Dead, November 12, 2011)

(Nekoneko's Movie Litterbox, November 14, 2011)

(Horror Films, November 17, 2011)

(Film Business Asia, November 15, 2011)

(PinoyMovieBlog, November 14, 2011)

(The Korea Times, November 17, 2011)

(Otherwhere, November 14, 2011)

(Init_Scenes, November 14, 2011)

(Hanguk Yeonghwa, November 16, 2011)

(Variety, November 15, 2011 - Paid Subscription Required)

(Hanguk Yeonghwa, November 15, 2011)

(Dread Central, November 14, 2011)

(Next Projection, November 17, 2011)

(London Korea Links, November 12, 2011)


(Film Business Asia, November 18, 2011)

(Init_Scenes, November 17, 2011)

The Front Line

(Hanguk Yeonghwa, November 16, 2011)

(Eye for Film, November 18, 2011)

The Yellow Sea

(Korean Class Massive, November 6, 2011)


Handphone, 2009
(Korean Class Massive, November 7, 20110

(, November 14, 2011)

Rough Cut, 2008
(Next Projection, November 17, 2011)

The Host, 2006
(Ticker Talks Film, November 11, 2011)

The Weekly Review Round-up is a weekly feature which brings together all available reviews of Korean films in the English language (and sometimes French) that have recently appeared on the internet. It is by no means a comprehensive feature and additions are welcome (email pierceconran [at] gmail [dot] com). It appears every Friday morning (GMT+1) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at Korean Cinema News, and the Korean Box Office UpdateReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

To keep up with the best in Korean film you can sign up to our RSS Feed, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Korean Cinema News (10/06-10/12, 2011)

Lots of news stemming from the Busan International Film Festival, which is currently underway and will wrap up on Friday.  Also a number of great features and analyses peppered throughout. 


In Review: 2011 Busan International Film Festival
The 2011 Busan International Film Festival (now known as BIFF) began last Thursday and continues until this Friday.  I was able to attend 12 films over the course of the weekend, catching many of the movies I most wanted to see.  Overall the quality was quite strong, with a number of great films that will certainly be among my favorites in what has already been a very good year in world cinema.  (The One One Four, October 12, 2011)

Han Ga-in Returns After Seven Years With Architectural Theory
Actress Han Ga-in, who hasn't starred in a film since Once Upon a Time in High School (2004), will make her comeback with Architectural Theory, the new film from the director of Possessed (2009), Lee Yong-joo-I.  (, October 11, 2011)

Asia’s Directors Embracing 3-D
A 3-D horror movie set in a public toilet block is part of a revolution underway in the Asian film industry as low-budget 3-D productions take on the big studios at their own game.  At the 16th Busan International Film Festival, audiences have been lining up to see the likes of multimillion dollar 3-D productions The Three Musketeers and the reimaged version of the local monster hit The Host (2006).  (Joong Ang Daily, October 12, 2011)

What's Missing from Busan This Year? Hollywood
Notice anything different about the Busan International Film Festival this year?  Actually, there are many changes.  There's a new festival director, Lee Yong-kwan; there's a new venue, the Busan Cinema Center; and the Asian Film Market has moved to the Busan Exhibition and Convention Centre.  But amid all the changes, something's missing: Hollywood.  (The Hollywood Reporter, October 9, 2011)

Korea Contents Fund Showcase at Busan
At the 16th Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) and the 6th Asian Film Market, fund managers presented a variety of options for filmmakers at the Korea Contents Fund Showcase yesterday.  BIFF Festival Director LEE Yong Kwan opened the event with a message of welcome and thanks.  “It’s a wonderful thing to have these leading investment funds presenting here at the Busan International Film Festival today.  It is one of our goals to support filmmakers to find financing and distribution means, in addition to screening their films in our festival.”  (KOBIZ, October 12, 2011)

BIFF Closing Ceremony Selects Hosts
Director Jang Jin and actress Ryu Hyun-kyung will host the closing ceremony for this year’s Busan International Film Festival.  The ceremony will begin at 8 p.m. on Friday and will signal the end of the nine-day event, now Asia’s largest film festival.  The festival’s opening ceremony was hosted by two actresses, Ye Ji-won and Um Ji-won - representing the first time in history two women had hosted the opening event.  (Joong Ang Daily, October 12, 2011)

Ordinary people presented iPhone-made shorts on the sidelines of the Busan International Film Festival over the weekend, demonstrating even a 12-year-old can venture into filmmaking as the high-tech handset lowers the age threshold.  Despite featuring no film luminaries and drawing much smaller audiences than the festival’s official selections, these smartphone flicks show how amateurs can take advantage of technology to turn their mundane life into cinematic art.  (Joong Ang Daily, October 12, 2011)

Chapman University Presents The Busan West Asian Film Festival Nov. 11-13, 2011 in Orange, CA
Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Media Arts, recognized as one of the premiere film schools in the United States, in continued partnership with South Korea's Busan International Film Festival (BIFF), Asia's largest film festival, is proud to announce the Busan West Asian Film Festival, November 11-13 in Orange, Calif.  Busan West presents a unique filmmaker showcase that brings select Asian films and filmmakers from BIFF to the U.S. to create a new platform for heightened recognition outside of Asia.  This year the festival organizers are excited to welcome internationally acclaimed writer/director Bong Joon-ho (Mother, 2009; The Host, 2006; Memories of Murder, 2003), as the Busan West Icon Award recipient.  (, October 10, 2011)

Busan’s Asian Film Market Opens at New Venue
The Busan International Film Festival (BIFF)’s Asian Film Market opened yesterday for the first time in its new venue at the Busan Exhibition Convention Center (BEXCO). The market has reported a 67% increase in sales booths and a 24% increase in participant registration since last year.  (KOBIZ, October 11, 2011)

Little Wonders - The Child Actors of South Korea
The way people perceive of child actors can be guessed by the term itself. "Child actor" instead of "actor", as it is for everyone else.  Whether the world likes it or not, Western cinema, and mainly Hollywood, is the one that is available everywhere and so in our faces that we are often having trouble finding anything else.  So the usual idea people have about child actors as well, comes from Hollywood.  (Orion 21, October 9, 2011)

Showbox Sells Busan Opening Film Always to Japan
Major Korean distributor Showbox/Mediaplex has sold Song Il-gon’s melodrama Always, the 16th Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) opening film, to Japan’s Pony Canyon.  The film tells the fatal story of a former boxer and a blind girl who fall in love. It stars heartthrob So Ji-sub, who has built a fan-base in Asia after the hit TV series I Am Sorry, I Love You and Jang Hun’s debut feature Rough Cut (2008).  Opposite him stars Han Hyo-joo who swept up drama awards last year for her performance in the TV series Dong-Yi.  (KOBIZ, October 9, 2011)
Two months after the fact, it has been revealed that actress Han Chae-won killed herself on Aug. 25 at her home in Yeonhui-dong, central Seoul. Han was 31 years old.  The Seoul Seodaemun Police Station announced Saturday that Han appeared to have committed suicide since they discovered no signs of murder at the scene.  They did, however, report a suicide note, which said, “I want to die. I’m really sorry for my parents.”   (Joong Ang Daily, October 10, 2011)

Netflix Expanding Asian Movie Selection in Deal with Korea's Top Studio CJ E&M
CJ E&M today announced an agreement to feature twenty of its acclaimed Asian movies on Netflix, the world's leading Internet subscription service for enjoying movies and TV shows.  Beginning in October 2011, Netflix members in the US will be able to instantly watch the twenty titles multiple platforms, including TVs, popular tablets, key gaming consoles, computers and mobile phones.  (, October 7, 2011)

Local Heroes Heed the Call
Films from South Korea had a quietly successful year in the first eight months of 2011, despite a lack of high-profile titles on the international stage.  The industry is set to finish the last quarter in strength with a series of high profile releases.  For the first eight months of the year, local films enjoyed a 49% market share by admissions (47% by box office), a steady increase on the 42% (and 39%) achieved in the first eight months of 2010.  Overall admissions during the period were fractionally up at 107 million with box office at W838 million ($735m).  (Film Business Asia, October 10, 2011)
With a new name, a new venue and an emphasis on actors and directors from lesser-known parts of Asia, this South Korean port city is moving decisively to assert its status as the region's pre-eminent film industry destination.  (Reuters, October 10, 2011)

Kim Kee-duk Back in Director’s Chair
Kim Kee-duk, the 1960s cineaste who is not to be confused with the younger film maverick Kim Ki-duk (Arirang), was honored with a special award from Hermes Korea, Friday.  Kim appeared thoroughly moved as he received the Hermes Director’s Chair, a handsome piece of luxurious leather furniture monogrammed with his name.  (The Hollywood Reporter, October 8, 2011)

Bong Joon-ho’s The Host Gets Converted Into 3D, Sequel Still In The Works
While it’s never been a better time for the crossover of Asian cinema to audiences on this side of the ocean, none have been quite as big as Bong Joon-ho‘s The Host.  The 2006 film became a sensation, not only smashing box office records at home in South Korea, but becoming a must see film stateside, breaking out of its genre niche and finding a larger audience than this kind of flick normally would.  It seems that producers around the world all share the common trait of milking a hit movie for all it’s worth, as not only is there a long gestating sequel to the movie still on the table, until that arrives, The Host has gotten a brand new 3D makeover.  (indieWIRE, October 11, 2011)

Actors Buy 1,000 BIFF Tickets for Underprivileged
Actress Kong Hyo-jin and actor Cha Seung-won purchased 1,000 tickets to the Busan International Film Festival and donated them to organizers to hand out to socially marginalized groups.  (The Chosun Ilbo, October 12, 2011)

Korean WWII Film Promises Big Action, Bigger Drama
A new World War II action drama with an Asian perspective promises never before-seen battle scenes rife with humanist messages.  After holding a large-scale press junket at the Cannes Film Festival in May, the makers of My Way held the first Asian media showcase in Busan on Saturday.  Footages of the 28 billion-won Korea-China co-production were revealed during the event, featuring exquisite period details of 1930s Seoul to bloody battle sequences on European battlegrounds.  (The Hollywood Reporter, October 8, 2011)

Korean Animators Face Screen, Financing Barriers
Leafie, A Hen into the Wild was nicknamed “the emperor of the matinee” in Korea when the film first hit theaters this summer.  An animated film directed by Oh Seong-yoon with the budget of 3 billion won ($2.5 million), it is one of the few Korean animated films that broke 2.5 million admissions domestically. Still, theater owners refused to screen the film during the evening hours.  And when it did, the film was given screens left over by 3D Korean blockbusters such as Sector 7.  (The Hollywood Reporter, October 11, 2011)

Korean Summer Box Office Analysis
It was a summer of higher expectations than ever before.  People wondered if this year might be one that produced another film that clocked up the watershed number of 10 million admissions.  This year, an impressive number of big-scale Korean films were making their debut, including Quick and Sector 7, produced by Haeundae director J.K. Youn; The Front Line directed by Jang Hun, who had shot to stardom with popular films Rough Cut (2008) and Secret Reunion (2010), and War of the Arrows (a.k.a. Arrow, The Ultimate Weapon) by Kim Han-min (Paradise Murdered, 2007;  Handphone, 2009).  (Korean Cinema Today, October 7, 2011)

Actor Song Kang-ho
Not many would dispute the statement that actor Song Kang-ho is one of the best, if not the best actor currently working in the Korean film industry.  He’s always met our expectations and Hindsight is no exception.  Du-heon (Song) has left a gang to start a new life by opening a restaurant when a girl comes into his life.  (Korean Cinema Today, October 7, 2011)

Always Busan Q&A
Press conference took place after a press screening of Always at the 2011 Busan International Film Festival on October 6, 2011.  Appearing as speakers are the movie's director Song Il-Gon, lead actress Han Hyo-Joo and lead actor So Ji-Sub.  AsianMediaWiki editor Ki Mun was there and transcribed/translated the session.  (asianmediawiki, October 6, 2011)



You Pet

(Modern Korean Cinema, October 10, 2011)

Korean Cinema News is a weekly feature which provides wide-ranging news coverage on Korean cinema, including but not limited to: features; festival news; interviews; industry news; trailers; posters; and box office. It appears every Wednesday morning (GMT+1) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at the Korean Box Office Update and the Weekly Review Round-upReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

To keep up with the best in Korean film you can sign up to our RSS Feed, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Weekly Review Round-Up (08/13-08/19, 2011)

Lots of reviews this week including a number for Blind, which opened last week in Korea. I should mention that there are always reviews I don't agree with but I try to be democratic and include everything in this weekly update. I mention this because of the particularly off-point NY Times review of The Journals of Musan. However, it would be very safe to say that he is in the minority. If I've missed anything that you know of please let me know!


(Seongyong's Private Place, August 14, 2011)


(National Post, August 18, 2011)


(Bright Lights Film Journal, August 2011)

(Beyond Hollywood, August 15, 2011)

(Commentary Track, August 16, 2011)

(, August 16, 2011)

(, August 13, 2011)

(Beyond Hollywood, August 16, 2011)

(, August 17, 2011)

(The New York Times, August 16, 2011)

(Modern Korean Cinema, August 16, 2011)


(DVD talk, August 15, 2011)

(Twitch, August 17, 2011)

The Host, 2006
(Acid Cinema, August 15, 2011)

(Hangul Celluloid, August 16, 2011)

The Weekly Review Round-up is a weekly feature which brings together all available reviews of Korean films in the English language (and sometimes French) that have recently appeared on the internet. It is by no means a comprehensive feature and additions are welcome (email pierceconran [at] gmail [dot] com). It appears every Friday morning (GMT+1) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at Korean Cinema News, and the Korean Box Office UpdateReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

To keep up with the best in Korean film you can sign up to our RSS Feed, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Memories of Murder: Part VII - The Host

Bong Joon-ho is a filmmaker who is meticulous and knows what he is doing at all times, his intelligence and acute understanding of the needs of Korean audiences have made him incomparably successful in the theatre of contemporary Asian cinema.  With Memories of Murder he took the image of the emasculated male and he subverted and subjugated it and yet at the same time deified it to created a box office sensation that was choke-full of sociological pertinence.  His next film was even more successful and possibly more ambitious, certainly from a technical standpoint.  Essentially he took his lens and did for the South Korean melodrama what he had already done for masculine identity with Memories.  The Host is the highest-grossing Korean film of all time, and still sits comfortably on that laurel.  lt is a difficult film to label; when it was released overseas it was billed as a Jaws-like monster movie but to simplify it to that level does it a great injustice.  At its core it is a family melodrama that is punctuated and informed by the genre’s lengthy evolution in Korean cinema.  It is also monster movie, a comedy, and a political and social critique.  Song Kang-ho, although no longer employed within the civil service, reprises his stereotype as the post-traumatic emasculated male.  Here he is Park Gang-du, who runs a riverside store hut with his father, the archetypal family head, who was also in Memories playing the local chief inspector.  Song Kang-ho's character also has a young daughter and two siblings: a sister, who is a gifted archer and an alcoholic brother.

The family 'grieving' the loss of their youngest
The family is most definitely scarred. There is no mother as she has died, and the young daughter's mother ran off after she was born.  The archer sister is an extremely talented but intensely reserved individual who crumbles under the slightest amount of pressure.  The brother is a former student activist who has now more or less been cast out of society and idles his time drinking on unemployment. The father is also a mess and probably most like Gang-du, he desperately tries to keep the family together and attempts to stop all the in-fighting.  Whenever he opens his mouth, his demeanor seems to suggest the temperament and nobility of a wise old man but after a sentence or two the spectator along with his children recognize an old crackpot who takes himself more seriously than everyone else does.  The granddaughter is mortified by her embarrassing father and serves to represent a bored generation that has little respect for their parents; however she is portrayed in a positive light as she would likely outfox the whole bunch.  The narrative unfolds when a monster emerges from the Han River and after going on a rampage, steals the daughter.  Then against the oppressive and bumbling military rule which is attempting to contain the situation, as well as the antagonizing influence of the American military, the family draws together to retrieve their youngest and most valuable family member.  The film is extremely sophisticated in its approach to a plotline that could easily veer off course but it carries on with verve and winds up being so entertaining that it is totally irresistible.  The film, just like Memories, succeeds enormously in representing the Korean family and the engrained obstacles that it must face as a unit. "Commercially driven Korean melodramas serve to illustrate some of the defining features of Korean films and the societal contexts in which they are produced".

Song Kang-ho in The Host
The Host also displays a certain and very recent trend in South Korean, namely the process of using multiple genres within the same narrative and successfully creating post-modem and accomplished works of entertainment whose main focus is to deal with certain sociological and historical issues. Another such film is the delightfully off-kilter Save the Green Planet (2003), which involves aliens, a punk version of Over the Rainbow, extreme torture and a swarm of killer bees “Korean filmmakers found that by blending and bending existing genres, they could create works that appealed to audiences who wanted something new”.  The Host has been the most successful of these films and to date the most fully realized.  The film is highly melodramatic and manipulative but steers us very smoothly to certain emotions and conclusions on certain sociological issues that pervade the narrative and all the while it is highly amusing.  By blending these different genres, the hybrid that has resulted, much like the monster (or The Host of the title), is clear evidence of the "transmutation of historical genres that engage this process of recuperation".

The film's narrative ends with the death of the girl in a show down which harkens back to the brutal student demonstrations of the 1980s, it is highly emotional and while it is set in the present, it does bring us back to that time.  The loss of the new generation as well as the  destruction of the eldest generation (as the patriarch also perishes in the narrative) leaves the 684 generation forced to band together and face their own traumas without the help of others.  However, the film's coda makes light of this as a year later the events are replayed on the news but those watching turn it off as they are too busy filling their bellies.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

The Significance of 'Manly Tears' for the Reclamation of the Male Id in Korean Cinema

Korean cinema features a lot of male characters that have either tried to shelter themselves from the past trauma of their lives, or have been directly confronted with it.  The Man From Nowhere, which I watched last night, may not be the best example of this, but when it's protagonist, Tae-sik, embraces So-mi, the child he saved, he breaks down in tears.  Throughout the film, he has been emotionless, and characters have mentioned that guns being fired right beside him haven't even fazed him.  Just before he cries, So-mi remarks that he is smiling and that it is the first time she has seen him do so.  His embrace with So-mi forces him to confront the loss of his family, I would argue that the sheer force of his history and the trauma he has borne for the last four years overwhelm him the moment the slightest crack appears in his armor.

Won Bin's manly tears
Tears are a very powerful image, and the more seldom their use, the stronger their impact.  The less we expect to see them, the more engaging they are.  They have the ability to convey a great number of emotions: fear, desperation, love, relief, grief, joy, and more.  Often they are more effective than words.  Korean cinema has a strong undercurrent of grief wich stems from its troubled history, and the closer you look, the more you will find.

Manly tears in Korean cinema are a very successful motif that elicit an emotional response because they hint at something greater.  When these characters break down it feels as though their trauma stems from more than their films' narratives, their tears are pervasive and multi-faceted and draw you into something deeper than mere escapism.  The emotional resonance of modern Korean films is a result, in equal parts, of the tremendous, highly-literate talents involved in the industry, and of the historical and psychological trauma that scars them all.  The 386 generation (or 486 by this point) brought all their baggage to these film sets and the tears of the leading men feel like their tears, or indeed a whole nations' tears.  Relief for the end of oppression and grief now that the release forces them to confront it.

Lee Byung-hun's manly tears
Kim Ji-woon's A Bittersweet Life features Lee Byung-hun as the hard-as-nails, ever-composed Sun-woo.  He goes through a narrative that seems him tortured, beaten, stabbed, shot, and of course betrayed, with barely a flicker of emotion.  In the climactic showdown with his boss and all his goons, he asks his former employer why he wants to kill him.  At this point he breaks down and out come the manly tears, he devoted his life to him for seven years and was an obedient and effective servant, but his boss only registers a small grin on his face and doesn't answer his question.  I would read this as the boss representing either the Korean government (of the past) or Korea itself, despite having been subservient to it so long, it could still betray you.  Lost in his boss' silence, he stares into space.  What he sees there is his own reflection in a window, he remembers who he is and his brief loss of composure evaporates.  His employer seems to think he's broken him, what he doesn't realize is that Sun-woo is unable to face his trauma and thus will revert to all that he knows.  This is a poor judgement on his part because all that Sun-woo knows is the cold brutality and cruel efficiency which he passed on to him.  It shoots straight back at him in the form of a bullet to the heart.  Sun-woo dies soon after this act and is thus unable to reclaim his identity, although since his moment past and he refused to embrace it there was nothing left for him to do but die.

The Host features a great deal of crying, although I wouldn't call it manly.  I think there is a lot to be said about it but it will need to sit with me for a little while.  Mainly I wanted to mention it briefly so that I could include the following photo.

Song Kang-ho's unmanly tears
The reclamation of the male Id is an important part of Korean cinema whether it wishes to acknowledge it or not.  The image of men crying in the cinema of Korea is a motif which allows for significant catharsis among the nation's post-traumatic population and is therefore an integral part of it.

These are just two (and a half) examples that come to mind but there are many more out there.  As I list a few more and allow for my thoughts on this topic to germinate, I will expand on this post.  If you can think of other good examples, of other reasons why it may be important, or if you think my theory is baloney, please let me know!