|06-04-2012, 11:03 AM||#1|
Join Date: Oct 2007
Rough Cut (2008)
I got through watching this movie last night, yet another which has been in my unwatched pile for so long, and as soon as it finished my first thought was "Why didn't I watch this much sooner!?"
The first feature by Kim Ki-duk protege Jang Hoon, the movie has a pretty original plot. Kang Ji-hwan is an action movie star, but he's frequently in trouble for hitting his co-stars for real during the fight scenes. After injuring the co-star of his latest movie he experiences a public backlash, and suddenly in the middle of filming nobody is willing to work with him anymore.
So Ji-sub is a gangster, who happens to be a fan of Ji-hwan, and during a night out at a kareoke bar, the two randomly meet. Ji-hwan has no respect for Ji-sub, but after some of his crew get a beating from Ji-sub's subordinates, Ji-sub gives him a cheque with his phone number on and tells him to use it to cover the medical expenses for his beaten up staff.
This leads to the crux of the plot....with Ji-hwan all out of options, he suddenly finds the crumpled up cheque in his pocket with Ji-sub's number on, and recalling how he'd mentioned he once wanted to be a movie star, decides to call him and ask him to take the co-starring role. Ji-sub ends up reluctantly agreeing....but on one term, all of the fighting has to be real.
The movie has the potential to simply be an exercise in trying to be clever, but thankfully Jang Hoon never takes it in that direction, instead letting the story play out as a well paced, sometimes funny, sometimes tense, regularly violent piece of film making. Ji-hwan's arrogance and ego play well against Ji-sub's cool and quiet exterior, as the two of develop a rivalry that both pretend isn't there.
The final fight scene probably has to go down as quite possibly the dirtiest ever put on film, and I don't mean tactics, as the two go at it in the muddy landscape of the Korean coastline, and the ending doesn't just go down the expected route, instead it simply left me wanting more. Strongly recommended.