Peeping Tom, Night of the Hunter and a whole host of older films were ignored or given bad reviews upon…
Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance
Revenge Was Never This Sweet
This is the story of Ryu, a deaf man, and his sister, who requires a kidney transplant. Ryu's boss, Park, has just laid him off, and in order to afford the transplant, Ryu and his girlfriend develop a plan to kidnap Park's daughter. Things go horribly wrong, and the situation spirals rapidly into a cycle of violence and revenge.
Well, hello there, Park Chan-wook.
Eschewing hyper-stylization for a spectacularly balanced view of anti-heroes, Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance is a more-than commendable example of humanizing villainous elements of a character to, not surprisingly, evoke sympathy for archetypes that should otherwise be considered irredeemable, cartoonish goons and morally bankrupt thugs. Rarely have I seen such devotion to twisting violent, senseless acts I would otherwise find unnecessarily brutal or redundant into essential components of balancing that fine line between protagonist and antagonist. Somehow, and I think it's mostly due to smartly giving each '-agonist' a full act to develop their character, motivations, moral failings, and justifications for such, the final confrontation is one where I couldn't decide which one I wanted to…
My biggest mistake was seeing Oldboy prior to viewing the rest of the trilogy! Oldboy was Chan-wook Parks Magnum Opus, so if you are expecting the rest of the trilogy to live up to the same quality you will be sorely disappointed! That does not mean they weren't good, they were great films but only if you judge them as stand alone movies and avoid comparing them to Oldboy!
I made the mistake of comparing this film to Oldboy and that was reflected by my original rating of 3 Stars! Having let time pass and watching the films in their correct order that score jumped a whole star to a much deserved 4 star rating!
A complex, richly layered revenge…
"Vengeance Is Mine": the original title.
"Revenge is a dish best served cold" - Old Klingon Proverb
Under the p.o.v from our protagonist(?) named Ryu a deaf-mute,everything is based on your life as it follows...and it associates...the radio announcer says that his sister need a kidney transplant immediately before get screening all day long in despair...kids plays outside running and laughing traversing a path with multiple puddles after the rain ... As she hear the voice on the radio that the chances are close to all do well, after a big problem occur to this brothers...as much he takes care of here...
...After being fired and cheated in a negotiation in which the kidney loses himself, Ryu decides to kidnap…
This one has been on my South Korean watch list for a very long time now. In fact, I hadn't seen either of the Vengeance films despite being a fan of both Korean cinema, and director Chan-wook Park. Despite some valid criticisms and vapid blind fanboyism, Oldboy is still one of my personal favorites. Which makes the fact that I held off on this one for so long, very strange to say the least.
But it's better late than never! Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance is a bold and unique first step in the Vengeance trilogy that is flawed, but ultimately a good movie when mixed in with Park's other films.
The story runs in the vein of other South Korean…
There are no heroes, there are no villains. There are just people trying to survive in a universe that has a morbid sense of humor.
Chan-wook Park's Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance is a dark and disturbing, but strangely beautiful masterpiece of a thriller. It's odd just how different this is from the other Park movie I've seen, Oldboy, which is far more indulgent in its violence. It is a great movie on its own term but doesn't quite reach the emotional height of his first entry in his vengeance trilogy. Sympathy is a quietly affecting movie that creeps up on you and before you know it delivers with moments of genuine shock and anguish, elevated by the eerie calmness of the film. It is rather slow-paced and likes to keep the camera static, the dialogue scarce. The performances by the main cast is adequately understated…
My second favourite film in Chan-Wook Park's vengeance trilogy. My favourite is that one with the octopus and the incest.
Very raw, brutually realistic and cold, this film will leave you with gut-wrenching feelings. It isn't going to make it any easier to watch the harsh scenes; it's not going to use action movie gimmicks to aid you in getting through it. It's going to show you exactly how awful violence can be. It is through this daring act that the film's beauty appears. It's a wabi-sabi film through and through, and a must-watch.
I understand why people believe that this is a good film, but I also think that it is miserable to watch, and I'd be disturbed if I met someone who called it their favorite film. And yes, I understand the statement that the director was going for, the endless escalation of revenge and the duality of man, but the violence feels overdone and almost sensationalized in some parts. Plus, no one will ever win points from me for including any form of violence against children. I can't deny how visually striking "Mr. Vengeance" is, however, which is why I'm even giving it as high as three stars.
Absolutely gutting... in every sense.
Some interesting images stop this from being awful but can't save it. Underwritten and rather painful.
A note on the viewing: HD. 2K. BD.
A piece of art so meticulously constructed that its violent nature is both irresistible and disturbing, with particularly striking editing and stunning visuals.
gosh, what a beautiful film.
there seems to be a lot of points during the film of just silence, which worked really well. seeing the lengths of different types of love for different types of people was showed perfectly. Park does an amazing job. I watched this after watching Oldboy, and while it wasnt as good i was not disappointed. Excited next on my list is lady vengeance and stoker!
It’s curious that names are rarely used in Sympathy For Mr Vengeance. Chan-Wook relies on his actors’ performances as well as their uniform-like costuming and make-up choices to distinguish themselves. But why rely on such things? Could their very anonymity have a point of its own? That these hapless individuals and their intertwining lives are insignificant cogs in a far greater machine? A microscopic element of a far greater spiral? If the director could pull out to encompass all of Korea, all of Asia, all of the planet, might he not find us all working our way, inevitably, toward some great elaborate end? And who wins in this grand plan? Certainly not society’s more anonymous members…
Sympathy For Mr Vengeance…
A severely under-appreciated film that demands undivided attention.
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