Memories of Murder
1986 Gyunggi Province. The body of a young woman is found brutally raped and murdered. Two months later, a series of rapes and murders commences under similar circumstances. And in a country that had never known such crimes, the dark whispers about a serial murderer grow louder. A special task force is set up in the area, with two local detectives Park Doo-Man and Jo Young-Goo joined by a detective from Seoul who requested to be assigned to the case. Based on a true story that occurred in Hwaseong, Gyeonggi Province over the course of six years (1986 - 1991). 10 women were raped and murdered in a 2km radius ranging from a 71 year-old grandmother to a 13 year old schoolgirl. Over 3,000 suspects were interrogated and at least 300,000 police took part in the massive investigation. Not a single person was indicted for the crimes.
The film begins with the discovery of the first victim. The first of the three detectives that are on the case arrive at the scene where a group of children is playing nearby. They interfere with the investigation and destroy much needed technical evidence.
This prologue has two striking qualities that will continue to appear throughout the film. First of all, there is detective Park Doo-Man (played by the excellent Song Kang-ho) who is almost completely alone. There's no uniformed officers, no photographers, no forensic experts, and even more unique, this appears to be quite ordinary. He don't comment on why so few police officers is helping with the case (this is an important comment that the film is making,…
Really? This was the great Memories of Murder? I've heard about this film from different sources over the years, and finally got around to watch it.
The film lets us get to know a couple of detectives from a completely incompetent police force. Oh my, the way they behave. What are they trying to accomplish, forcing confessions out of the wrong guys over and over again? Maybe this is the Korean way, I don't know. It certainly doesn't seem very credible. After two hours they haven't moved an inch in the right direction.
I am rather disappointed, to say it mildly. To say it stronger - perhaps the most overrated film I've seen in years.
For a good Korean serial killer action flick, check out The Chaser instead.
What's it like to be a subject of obsession, to be frightened for your life, to know other women like you have been murdered close to home, that the police are nowhere close to catching the culprit, and that at any moment you could be next? In real life scary people do exist, and it's only a matter of chance sometimes that separates the victims of crime and those who escape death or lifelong traumatizing thoughts. This is the lives of women in South Korea at the time of this film.
This is now my 2nd Korean film over the holidays and let's just say I think I might be forming an obsession with foreign films, in particular Korean ones…
Based on the real hunt for a multi-murderer in Korea, this is a story that it is almost impossible to believe. The incompetence of the police investigation, the violence of the police towards their suspects and their utter inability to cope with hunt for the murderer are all shown in painful detail.
This isn't a feelgood film or a comfortable watch, but I found it a very unusual, different, crime thriller.
I feel like you need to be Korean to fully enjoy and appreciate this movie. I apologize beforehand for what I'm about to say. As pretentious as it sounds, upon reading many reviews for this movie, I'm highly convinced that majority of the non Koreans just won't get it.
Now that I've had more time to think about this film I change my mind. Knowing what the beginning of this movie actually mean is good enough to fully enjoy this film. Having a thorough understanding of the Korean language, the Korean culture or the Korean history isn't necessary to enjoy this film. However, if you do have that knowledge it could amplify the appreciation and enjoyment of this film.
Memories of Murder was my first Joon-ho Bong film and it's definitely made me (more) excited to start checking out the rest of his work. As an avid fan of David Fincher's Zodiac, the comparisons made between these two led me to be quite excited for it and it didn't let me down. It's easy to see why the two are often mentioned together, as Bong went to great lengths to make sure he appropriately presented the true facts of the investigation that Murder encompasses. Set in 1986, the film focuses on Detectives Doo-Man Park (Kang-ho Song), Yong-koo Cho (Roe-ha Kim) and Tae-Yoon Seo (Sang-kyung Kim) as they try to solve a series of murders of young girls in the…
30 Countries Challenge // #16 - South Korea
Memories of Murder focuses on the true story of a small town police force trying to solve the mystery of Korea's first known serial killer. It ends up being a lot more interesting than many crime dramas due to the utter ineptitude of the detective team but this also makes it a lot more comical, and I wasn't sure at certain parts whether the film was succeeding at being a black comedy, or failing at being a serious drama.
We're so used to seeing in the media hundreds of crime shows where the police have huge (unrealistically so) amounts of ridiculous technology and know-how in order to solve the hardest of murders.…
Realized as I saw this that I've seen parts of it before, must've gone on tv one late night a few years ago. Anyways:
This was beautiful. Memories of Murder is a brilliantly pieced together murder story that is always engaging, with great characters (probably the best I've seen Song Kang-ho so far), and it's occasionally quite funny as well (I just find it hilarious how these Koreans call each other names all the time and jump-kick eachother down hills and over tables). Bleak colors, long shots of open landscapes, often with lonely shacks or factories sets the perfect mood. The ending left me with a really satisfying feeling and a smile on my face, even though it was very open ended.
Directed by Boon Joon-Ho
I've been meaning to see this one for a long time (probably since whenever I saw Boon Joon-Ho's "The Host" which I enjoyed quite a bit) and I was happy when it finally reached the top of my Netflix queue.
This is Boon Joon-Ho's second feature and is based on the true story of South Korea's first known serial murders in the late 80's. We follow a detective trying to put together a case, but struggling to do so as he has no experience with this kind of thing and very little technology to help him. Another detective comes in from the big city (Seoul) to try and help him. Of course, the two…
'Memories of Murder' is a great film. The subject matter (police hunt serial killer) has been covered countless times before, but it is done so well here that the piece feels fresh. The characters are very watchable and develop over the course of two hours; they traverse this dark story and even provide moments of humor. Highly recommended.
A far, far cry from Joon-ho's first feature. But definitely leaning towards his later polished works. The cinematography is absolutely well done. The lighting was always perfect, the pacing was fluid, the acting --- nothing less than what you'd expect from Kang-ho. This is S. Korea's Zodiac, but with more heart and better picture.
15 minutes after seeing this movie it's hard to write something coherent, but oh boy, how can a movie set in such a seemingly light mood can kick you in a groin so hard in last minutes?
Set in the 1980's in a South Korean province, under military dictatorship. A young woman is found raped and murdered under gruesome circumstances and the local detectives who employ brutal and ineffective methods are tasked with solving the case. A detective from Seul is transferred over and he must work with this provincial force, while clashing with their lead detective as to their methods, to track down the killer who seemingly leaves no clues behind. Their methods become ever more desperate as the body count grows......
Whenever I see, 'based on a true story' message at the beginning of the film, I do worry slightly it will be a bit boring. Fortunately this is an understated, touching, and at times…
Bong Joon-ho's movies are terrible, bi-polar clusterfucks that fail to satisfy on any level except for perhaps those who enjoy boggling at bizarre trainwrecks. His juxtaposition of goofy slapstick and grim seriousness simply doesn't work and left me wondering how this schizophrenic madman continues to get funding for his insane projects.
Although if your idea of the best crime film ever made is a pastiche of Seven and the Keystone Cops, I guess this is the movie for you.