Showing posts with label park joong-hoon. Show all posts
Showing posts with label park joong-hoon. Show all posts

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Korean Cinema News (03/15-03/21, 2012)

Lots of big sales at the HK Film Market and some interesting casting news.  Also many new trailers and posters this week, including one for the hotly anticipated As One.


'Movie Director' Park Joong-hoon is Now a Writer Too
Park Joong-hoon is currently writing the scenario for his director-debut movie with a professional writer.  He has been officially announcing his debut as a director and the preparation process on his Twitter regularly.  He said on his Twitter, "I have officially started filming. I will put my heart into it".  Previously, he revealed that he was working with a professional writer on the scenario and truthfully revealed the pain and joy in writing out the story.  (, March 14, 20120

Early Works Return to Life at Korean Film Archive
Moviegoers today are accustomed to glossy, high-definition images that indiscriminately reveal slight skin blemishes of actors known for flawless complexions. Bass-heavy, surround-sound audio has also become the norm.  (The Korea Times, March 15, 2012)

Jane Birkin Wants to Work with Director Hong Sang-soo
French actress and singer Jane Birkin talked to Yonhap News ahead of her Korean concert at AX-Korea on March 22.  During the email interview, the chanteuse wondered if she was too old to give acting a go in Korea.  “There’s always a bit of a risk when you start something new, but I think working on a Korean movie would be worth it. The question is though, would Hong Sang-soo want to hire me?” joked Birkin. (Joong Ang Daily, March 16, 2012)

Lost’s Yunjin Kim Gets A Lead In ABC’s Mistresses
Lost alumna Yunjin Kim has landed a lead opposite Rochelle Aytes and Jes Macallan in Mistresses, ABC’s drama recently greenlighted straight to series for a summer 2013 launch.  The soap, written by KJ Steinberg and based on the British format, is described as a provocative drama about four women — three of them played by Kim, Aytes and Macallan — with scandalous romantic lives, caught in storms of excitement and self-discovery, secrecy and betrayal.  (Deadline Hollywood, March 16, 2012)

Buyers Run Off With Showbox's Thieves
The Thieves, a big-budget heist movie, has been a strong seller for integrated South Korean film giant Showbox/Mediaplex Inc.  The company has pre-sold the film to Dream Movie Entertainment Overseas Ltd for Singapore and Malaysia, Queen International Pictures Pte Ltd for Indonesia and Catchplay Inc for Taiwan.  (Film Business Asia, March 18, 2012)

KOFIC Eyes Global Market at H.K. FILMART
Korean Film Council (KOFIC) announced on Monday that it is currently participating in Hong Kong International Film & TV Market (FILMART), to promote local films worldwide and launch more foreign projects in Korea.  The Hong Kong-based event, which kicked off Monday and runs through Thursday, is considered one of the biggest film markets in Asia.  KOFIC said they will have their own lounge, titled “Korean Film Center,” during the event.  (The Korea Herald, March 19, 2012)

Start Date Set and The Host Stars join Bong Joon-ho’s Snow Piercer
A-list director Bong Joon-ho (Mother, 2009) is bringing back a couple of stars from one of his biggest hits, The Host (2006), for his newest project, Snow Piercer, which sounds like quite the large-scale sci-fi/thriller/action venture.  In it, Go Ah-sung (God of Study) and Song Kang-ho team up to play a father-daughter duo, as they did six years ago in The Host.  The film is set to begin shooting on March 26 and expected to run through to July 1.  (dramabeans, March 19, 2012)

5 Points to Do Right by CJ
US-based Asian entertainment group Right Stuf Inc has struck a deal to handle seven titles from South Korea's CJ Entertainment Inc in North American home entertainment markets.  Titles include Bleak Night (2010), Finding Mr Destiny (2010), Moss (2010), Penny Pinchers, Punch, The Suicide Forecast and Tazza: The High Rollers (2006).  (Film Business Asia, March 19, 2012)

Will Park Chan-wook Go to Cannes With Nicole Kidman?
Will director Park Chan-wook step on the red carpet at Cannes with Hollywood actress Nicole Kidman?  Director Park Chan-wook's Hollywood project Stalker is likely to be submitted in the 65th Cannes International Film Festival that is opening on the 16th of May.  Recent Hollywood reports and movie expert media have been looking positively at the possibilities of Stalker entering Cannes, along with the coming together of a Korean director and famous Hollywood actress.  (, March 20, 2012)


Heartthrob Determined to Go Beyond His Image
More than a decade into his career, Joo Jin-mo, 37, is still considered one of the best-looking faces in Korean cinema. He is also a victim of that image, however, incarnating one virile leading man after another.  Even in his newest film Gabi that opens today, he plays that tough-guy role again.  (The Korea Times, March 13, 2012)


As One (via Naver)



The Scent


Doomsday Book



The Scent

The Thieves


Helpless Repeats at the Expense of Russian Coffee
(Modern Korean Cinema, March 18, 2012)

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.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

The Apprehenders a.k.a. Officer of the Year (Chae-po-wang) 2011

The Apprehenders a.k.a. Officer of the Year is one of the few bright spots in what has been a relatively disappointing commercial output for chungmoro in early 2011. Park Joong-hoon, one of the heavyweight stars of past and current Korean cinema who has experienced a renaissance recently with strong roles in Haeundae (2009), Hanji (2011), and especially My Dear Desperado (2010), subsequent to a three-year hiatus, teams up with Lee Seon-gyoon, who has impressed recently with roles in Hong Sang-soo’s Oki’s Movie and the solid rom-com Petty Romance (both from last year), for this effective and often-hilarious action comedy.

Heads of police demand results
The film walks on often trod ground as it focuses on the police in Korea and their less than noble priorities when it comes to apprehending criminals. Even the slightest exposure to Korean cinema will result in this being no surprise but although it doesn’t go to the lengths of exposing a perceived national pariah in the way that the likes of Peppermint Candy (1999), The Unjust (2010) and many others have, it strangely brought to mind my favorite television series, The Wire (2002-2008). While one has really little to do with the other, I was reminded of one of the main themes which ran through most of the series, 'duking the stats' to make the endeavors of the department far more palatable than they really are, for the benefit of perception and politics.

The Apprehenders uses this statistical obsession as its starting point, Detective Hwang (Park) is the big kahuna of law enforcement with more arrests than anyone, he is the reigning Officer of the Year, while police academy graduate Detective Jeong (Lee) desperately wants the prize money that this honor affords in order to buy a house with his bride-to-be. They are the lead detectives in two competing precincts, Mapo and Seodaemun, who seem hellbent on upstaging one another and stealing each other’s collars. While this large scale game of one-upmanship and bravado is essentially a way to pit the main protagonists against each other, it does cleverly and surreptitiously introduces the idea that policing in Korea is not performed with the intent that it should be. As far as legal, judiciary, and enforcement careers go, there has always been a problem, the world over, as to how one should balance the careerist advancement of the self and the moralistic pursuit of the greater good. More often than not, the greater good is a noble notion that is idealized but not sought or achieved.

Mapo vs. Seodaemun
While the detectives go at it, there is a series of brutal rapes that take place in the city and now the police commissioner has made it a priority to track the perpetrator down. Naturally, a joint task force is created between Mapo and Seodaemun and instead of helping one another catch the criminal, they hinder eachother and arguably spoil the chance to catch him, in effect leaving him free to violate further victims. I wonder if it was the intent of the filmmakers to lay this quandary in our laps, was it the reckless, arrogant, and stubborn refusal of the principal detectives to collaborate that lead to an innocent 15-year-old being brutally beaten and raped after they let him get away? I’m not sure that they are directly inferring this, but the possibility, which could significantly alter how you the view the film, is there.

Aside from this, the film is a relatively straightforward dual protagonist narrative that is played for broad laughs and these are achieved in no small part due to the strong chemistry between Park and Lee. The direction is even-handed and lets the actors shine through the script’s often clever dialogue. There were three people credited with writing this screenplay, including director Lim Chan-ik, Choi Jin-won is the only one with any work I’m familiar with as he wrote last year’s Bad Couple, which I didn’t like very much but this may have had more to do with the lead actors in that project rather than his writing ability.

Det. Hwang vs. Det. Jeong
My main gripe with film was the tone it took as the protagonists got together to genuinely catch the rapist. It got much more somber and sadly self-serious as we made the rounds of the traumatized victims, I felt it not in keeping with the levity of the rest of the film and when contrasted with the main comedic thrust of the plot, it seemed borderline inappropriate.

The Apprehenders works best as a fun action comedy anchored by two strong lead performances. The chase sequences are well-rendered, the supporting characters each have something to add, and the great dialogue keeps everything rolling together. A solid genre entry all around.

Reviews and features on Korean film appear regularly on Modern Korean Cinema.  For film news, external reviews, and box office analysis, take a look at the Korean Box Office UpdateKorean Cinema News and the Weekly Review Round-up, which appear weekly on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings (GMT+1).

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.