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Joong-ho is a dirty detective turned pimp in financial trouble as several of his girls have recently disappeared without clearing their debts. While trying to track them down, he finds a clue that the vanished girls were all called up by a same client whom one of his girls is meeting with right now.
The experience of watching this movie is akin to having your emotions scraped out with an ice cream scoop. The movie ended and I just sat there feeling empty and helpless, realizing that so many things are unfair and unjust and bad things happen to good people and bureaucracy is always about the power and never about the people.
Current Korean cinema knows how to do revenge thrillers, and they're quite adept at showing the incompetence of the justice system, but what really elevated this movie was the humor. It makes watching the film bearable, indeed it makes it so painfully human. For a film called The Chaser, the chase scenes in here are not at all your typical slick…
How misleading. The Chaser is no revenge thriller. It's police procedural. I've went in with wrong expectations, so things kind of dragged for me. They were sitting around smoking and chilling when I was anticipating for some hammer action, guess it's my fault for stereotyping. Still, surprises are always welcomed. I'm glad to say that The Chaser is one of the better surprises. Think Memories of Murder meet Se7en, Silence of the Lambs meet, uh, Oldboy.
Desperation, violence, torture, they're there. A sick, insane antagonist? Yup. Thinking about Ha Jung Woo's twisted smirk still makes my hair stand on end. Only thing missing is Choi Min Sik, any film's two times better with Choi Min fucking Sik.
I sounded like…
Taking a quick peek at the stars afforded this Korean revenge thriller by my friends here, I have a feeling my take isn’t going to be too popular.
I don’t have an issue with ultraviolence. I love Kim Ki-duc’s work, especially Moebius, and Kubrick’s ‘Singin’ in the Rain’ and Tarantino’s ‘Stuck in the Middle with You’ are amongst my favourite cinematic moments. I certainly don’t have issue with the typical Korean revenge film; in fact I can’t think of a single one I haven’t loved. It can’t be that it was about saving a little girl, like The Man From Nowhere, because I loved that one too.
No, I think it’s because this film has less in common with all…
Whew, that was a rough watch. I can't say I "enjoyed" it as that's not the right word to describe the experience, but it is damn good. The Chaser keeps you glued to the screen praying that everything will turn out for the best while simultaneously questioning your faith in both humanity and the legal system.
This film has everything you expect from a Korean thriller, including the mandatory gratuitous hammer violence, but tugs at the heartstrings a little harder than most. Yun-seok Kim shines in the lead role as does Jung-woo Ha as one of the most detestable and downright unrelatable villains that I've seen in a while.
All in all, The Chaser is good stuff and well worth your time.
South Korea, 2008.
Another day, another interesting addition to the 30 Countries Challenge. Another day, another interesting addition to the South Korean Revenge Thriller sub genre.
I swear. Koreans just know how to do something magical with movies like these. Puerto Ricans are good at baseball, Ireland makes good beer and South Korea knows how to make batshit insane crime dramas.
The Chaser has got every winning ingredient to make that special sizzling dish of Korean Revenge. It's got grisly violence when necessary, crazy characters, tense chasing and fighting scenes, cool urban style and unbelievable coincidences. It may not be as stylish as Oldboy or as off the wall…
When it comes to thrillers, no film industry around the world has done even half as impressive a job as Cinema of South Korea has since the dawn of this new millennium. Inspired from a real-life Korean serial killer case file, The Chaser tells the story of an ex-detective turned pimp whose girls have been disappearing lately without clearing their debts, leading to financial losses in his business. While tracking back, he finds out that all girls had vanished after meeting the same client whom one of his girls is meeting right now & decides to find him before it's too late, not knowing that the client he is dealing with is a sadistic psychopath.
For a film that presents such…
justice is a social construct :(
The humor the South Koreans lace their thrillers with; sometimes I like it, sometimes I don't. Here, I felt the mix was a bit awkward, perhaps because the villain/crimes were so heinous/bleak.
Bonuspoints for the Big Nog - Heath Herring fight in the background though. Pride Never Die!
South Korean movies—notably most of their thriller offerings—always have a way to leave a lasting impression. And this one is no exception. Watching this movie is a perfect way to fucked my day up.
a must watch thriller.
Bloody hell. South Korean films love relentlessly punching their audience in the guts, huh? Even though I hated it for it at times, I could never predict what mean-spirited path The Chaser had in store for me. It takes horrifying turns that Hollywood would never go near. Aesthetically, The Chaser is appropriately grimy and rainy, bathed in dull green and grey. The city becomes a frustrating maze for its characters to navigate and is unbelievably effective in its bleakness. The film has an incredible sense of pacing and timing, knowing when to drag out tension and when to use unexpected blunt force. Police procedurals don't get much more stressful than this.
Expertly paced genre mixture. Serial killer mystery, macabre comedy, social commentary.
Stop whatever you are doing and watch this.
Un thriller en mayusculas. Si no hay un remake americano es porque como es Coreana ni la han visto. Realmente este director, genero que toca lo clava. La frialdad y la inteligencia que retrata al Psicópata es desgarradora y su anti-héroe genial.
Step One: Go to www.random.org.