Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Dirty Carnival

I am supposed to review this long ago but since I'm not feeling so well and lately easily fall sick...most of the time I only spend my time on bed and watching movie...I guess a long rest does not suits me well...I hope I could write my own reviews but this time I only copy it from somewhere else and hope it was ok with u guyz...please excuse me for only this time...anywhere...I love this movie...

Clocking in at two hours and fiften minutes Yu Ha's A Dirty Carnival - is perhaps a little over long but beyond that it's difficult to find anything negative to say about it. Fans of Yu's previous works, notably Once Upon A Time In High School, are already well aware of the writer-director's gift for creating rich characters and that gift has done nothing but develop and strengthen over the years. Nominally a gangster film but really a lushly realized character drama A Dirty Carnival is blessed with a detailed script, a host of realistic and fully fleshed out characters, and a charismatic and complex lead performance from Jo In-Seong.
Jo stars as Kim Byung-Doo, a charming low level gangster creeping up on thirty years of age. His youth rapidly fading Kim has seemingly been on the cusp of making something of himself for years, his natural charisma making him well respected among his peers while a manipulative boss and string of bad luck has kept him firmly locked into his lowly status. When a wealthy industrialist approaches Kim's boss to eliminate a bothersome criminal prosecutor Kim seems his long awaited chance to advance and takes it. But all advancement comes with a cost ...

A Dirty Carnival is really two films in one. The hook that will draw people in is the gangster element, the story of the rise and fall of Kim Byung-Doo through the criminal ranks. But running parallel to this story is the story of Kim's family - his sickly mother, studious sister, and aspiring gangster brother - as well as the relationship triangle between Kim, his childhood friend and would-be film director Min-Ho, and his childhood sweetheart Hyun-Joo. There's no question which of these elements is more important to director Yu - the film begins with the relationship element and devotes the bulk of its running time to it - and the real tragedy of the film begins when Kim's two disparate worlds begin to mingle.

This balancing of elements is strikingly similar to what Yu acheived with Once Upon A Time In High School, his previous film, and it's not hard to see this effort as a logical extension of that film, with this life of crime being a logical end for many of the hardscrabble youth in his earlier film. Again Yu demonstrates an assured hand behind the camera coupled with a strong sense of humanity on the page. A Dirty Carnival has been hailed as one of the finest gangster films to come out of Korea in recent years but that really feels like something of a misnomer. The gang here isn't the point, not at all. The people are. The gang environment simply allows Yu a setting within which to say something about ambition, family, love and betrayal.

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