Train to Busan

Train to Busan ★★★★

Well, Train to Busan is one hell of a ride, for sure. This is an emotional family drama disguised as a relentless zombie-apocalypse thriller, one with its own rules. I was pleasantly surprised by how well-done and slick this film was and didn’t expect to get so invested in the fate of these characters as much as I did.

Directed by South-Korean director Sang-ho Yeon, Train to Busan follows a father and his estranged little daughter who make a trip to Busan to see the mother. Meanwhile, a mysterious zombie virus breaks out in South Korea. One of the infected people manages to hop on the train at the last minute and, of course, all hell breaks loose. So you can imagine how traumatic it must be to stay alive in such a limited space.

There’s some eye-rolling movie clichés like characters exchanging meaningful looks when one of them makes a sacrifice so that the other can escape and some predictable plot points. After a while, you can tell who’s going to die and who’s going to survive. But those minor flaws didn’t detract from how well-made and engrossing the movie was. Train to Busan is a zombie thriller that finds its dramatic pulse in the father-daughter dynamic, while also exploring the inevitable question of morality that arises out of the apocalyptic event.

In addition to excellent technical aspects like genuinely creepy zombie makeup and impressive CGI, the movie also has solid characterization that make you care fore these people and great performances, especially from Yoo Gong who plays the father and Soo-an Kim who plays the daughter. If you’re a fan of zombie flicks, you really shouldn't miss this one!

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