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Posts Tagged ‘film’

Take a quote from your favorite movie — there’s the title of your post. Now, write!

웃어라,온세상이 너와 함께 웃을 것이다. 울어라, 너 혼자 울 것이다.

Laugh and the world laughs with you.  Weep and you weep alone.

This is one of my favorite quotes of all time- and it stood out to me when I first watched Oldboy.  You may or may not have noticed, but the quote is also displayed as the tagline on my blog.  This quote has resonated with me so much because it is a statement of the harsh reality that we live in and it was perfectly displayed in Oldboy.

I hate to be pessimistic but most times, we can trust no one.  We surround ourselves with people that supposedly love and support us, but that’s during good times.  What about those times that we really need someone- who’s there?  It’s those people who are there for us when we are in dire need of help that we can truly depend on and who we should value.  Everyone else… where were they when we needed them the most?

“Laugh and the world laughs with you.”  When we are happy we find ourselves surrounded by laughter and people.  Everyone is your friend and you are everyone’s friend.  I’m not going to deny it- it’s a good feeling.  It makes us feel on top of the world.

“Weep and you weep alone.”  When we need help, a favor, suddenly the laughter and people disappear.  As quickly as they appeared, they are gone.  Everyone suddenly “has something to do” or “they are busy.”  Let down, the emptiness in our core grows even deeper.  We are left alone.

Even though networking and connecting with people are great things, it is all fake.  Fake relationships that are built upon false impressions and expectations are weak and won’t last long.  And it’s such a sad thing to see that our society has grown to be built around falsities.  Where did the belief of “help thy neighbor” go?  It’s like the whole value system in our society has dissipated…  The concept of “individualism” in America seemed like a good idea, but is it worth it to have a culture based on individualism when it has led to isolation and loneliness?

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One of the most touching Korean films I have watched is 통증 Pained (2011).  I am not the type of person to cry easily to “sad movies” (or jerk and cover my eyes when it comes to horror/torture films), but by the end of this film, my face was glazed in tear juice.  The best part was that I couldn’t even control the tears ((O_O)).  

This film is directed by Kwak Kyung-taek and tells of a romance between a debt collector who lost his sensitivity to pain in an accident when he was young, Nam-soon, and a homeless hemophiliac who works a street vendor, Dong-hyun.

What I loved about this film was that it developed very nicely- somehow it seemed to move slowly and quickly at the same time.  I think Kwak Kyung-taek did a great job pacing this plot, which is very important in a film because if the plot moves too slowly, the movie may come off as boring, and if the plot moves too quickly, the movie may come off as rushed. 

Now as I move into specifics of this film, I’m going to have to turn on the….

The film starts with Nam-soon and his boss collecting debt from a couple- when I first watched this, I didn’t understand what was wrong with Nam-soon.  He had an empty stare and he seemed fine throughout his beating… which puzzled me.  After I learned that he had analgesia- the inability to sense pain- I realized that the beginning of the film, which focused in on his face, was to demonstrate his lack of feeling and emotion.  When I found out about Nam-soon’s condition, I felt sadness, but nothing to turn the tears on.

However, despite Nam-soon’s inability to sense pain, we see that change… a little tiny bit when he gets beaten at the riot and is taken to the hospital by Dong-hyun.  It was almost painful for me to watch him get beat like a pulp and yet he still had a look of emptiness in his eyes.  The scene when he stumbles towards the street and Dong-hyun asks him if he is okay, we are shown a flashback to when young Nam-soon is in a car with his family when their car crashes and burns.  In the flashback, we are also shown that as their car swerved off the road, his sister wraps herself around him to protect him.  Then the flashback fades to Dong-hyun hovering over him in the street looking for help.  This was one of the most powerful scenes in the film because it shows that Nam-soon hasn’t met anyone who has treated him genuinely since his sister passed. 

When Dong-hyun moves into Nam-soon’s place (since she is homeless and Nam-soon wants to keep an eye on her until she pays her father’s debt), we are able to peek into Nam-soon’s world.  As he shows Dong-hyun around, we see that his house seems almost untouched and untouchable.  Basically, Nam-soon preserved the home he had before his family passed away from the crash.  And when Dong-hyun accidentally breaks one of his family dishes, we finally see some pain in his eyes.  But the pain stays only briefly in his eyes… 

About half-way through the movie, Dong-hyun finally expresses her pain at seeing him hurt himself everyday and asks him if he ever thought about what his family would think.  But Nam-soon only responds with bitterness and anger.  For the first time in the film so far, Nam-soon shows emotion.  He no longer appears to be a “piece of wood,” especially when the topic of his family comes up.  And the presence of Dong-hyun in his life gave him some emotion…

After the mini fight between Nam-soon and Dong-hyun, Nam-soon’s change becomes bigger and clearer.  He tells his boss friend (from the beginning of the movie) that he is no longer interested in hurting himself.  Even though he is insensitive to pain, he doesn’t want to abuse his body seriously for other people and money anymore.  Rather, he starts taking on stunt jobs and for awhile it seems that he and Dong-hyun are living happily together. 

However, Dong-hyun is sick too and her sickness needs constant care and expensive treatment.  Because Nam-soon does not have money to support her sickness in order for her to live a long life, Dong-hyun tells Nam-soon that she cannot be with him.  With that said, Nam-soon takes on one last dangerous job offered to him by his boss friend so that he can give that money to Dong-hyun so that she can live.

The last scene is the one that made me tear uncontrollably (even as I watched it again just now to evoke the same emotions so I could write about them).  Nam-soon is pushed off of a building to his death- as he is sprawled on the ground, he is ironically happy.  There is that twinkle of happiness in his eyes and even a smile comes out when Dong-hyun runs over to his side.  On her way to try and save Nam-soon, Dong-hyun stepped on a nail and started to bleed (problematic since she is a hemophiliac).  However, somehow, she is still okay.  Nam-soon, seeing Dong-hyun by his side, is happy and there is a look of completion on his face.  While he is losing consciousness, we hear his plead to God to watch over and keep Dong-hyun safe.  In turn, he is willing to endure anything, even death, if that is what it will take for Dong-hyun to live a long life. 

Throughout this film, Nam-soon never comes off as “the bad guy.”  Somehow, I always felt sad when I saw Nam-soon.  He never hurt anyone, he couldn’t hurt anyone- that is why he was always the one beaten and he never lifted a finger to defend himself. 

His last job- he didn’t defend himself as he was pushed off of the building.  And even though most people in his position would be in great pain, he wasn’t at all.  However, Dong-hyun and his boss friend were the ones experiencing the pain that he couldn’t feel.  His boss friend always gave Nam-soon dangerous jobs, but Nam-soon was also his friend.  Seeing that the job he gave Nam-soon killed him put him in great pain.  He was also the one who promised Nam-soon that he would be fine and that he would even protect him by parking a truck with boxes where he was supposed to jump.  However, the truck broke down and boss friend tried his best to tell Nam-soon not to jump until he could push the truck to its right location.  Ultimately, his plan failed when the guy on the roof pushed Nam-soon off on purpose… and the truck wasn’t parked below yet. 

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This is definitely a film I would recommend, especially if you like “meaningful” movies.  The title says it all- the film explores all the degrees of pain and what it actually means to feel pain.  By the end of the movie, you’ll know what true pain is. 

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“At the dawn of the millennium, the nation collapsed. At fifteen percent unemployment, ten million were out of work. 800,000 students boycotted school. The adults lost confidence and, fearing the youth, eventually passed the Millennium Educational Reform Act, AKA the BR Act….”

Last night, I finished “Battle Royale,” a movie that I have been waiting for so long to watch.  And let me tell you, the wait was worth it.  Before seeing this movie, “Noroi” was one of my all-time favorite horror films… but now, I don’t know… “Battle Royale” is right up there with “Noroi.”

Now, if you’ve ever heard of or read William Golding’s Lord of the Flies, the concept of “Battle Royale” is very similar.  Basically, Japan is becoming a mess with unemployment and crap, so the adults begin to fear the power of the youth.  How to solve this?  Well, the government passes an act in which each year, a randomly chosen high school class will be sent to a deserted island to battle it out to survive.  Only one winner can be standing at the end of three days.

With that said, you can imagine the blood bath that is created on the island.  Even though most of the teenagers feared such an uncivil duty placed upon them, there was that one student that took the task seriously and started it all… all it took was one death for people to get nervous and untrustworthy towards one another.  And so friends turned against friends… lovers turned against lovers… etc.

Besides the blood and gore, this film posed some good questions.  What will our world become when we do not have the government to protect our stabilization?  Can we really trust the people we think we can trust?  Are we all savages at heart?  Will we return to our natural instincts in times of dire need… such as when our survival is on the line?  Who are we?  What kind of people are we?  These are definitely things to think about, especially since our economy dipped this past year.  Sure the world was not in panic, but what would have happened if we did get to that level?  And of course, this movie made me think twice about the people that I think I know.  Other circumstances have already made me lose trust in people in general… but I still questioned whether I knew the people around me as well as I think I do.  I mean, do I really know who my enemies are?  Do YOU know who your true enemies are?  And what about your comrades?

The point is, this movie isn’t just your typical horror film (as with most Asian horror movies).  Rather, there are deeper questions and meanings that lie within the film itself.  Essentially, this is what I enjoy most about Asian horror movies.  But I specifically choose this as one of my favorites because of how well the plot is formulated and quite frankly, it relates to me and my generation.

So that I don’t leave you completely horrified and fearful of your peers, let me entertain you with some funny things I found about this film.  First and foremost, I thought it was quite funny how every person who died would say their last words and then flop like a dead fish almost as quickly as I can blink my eye.  Just think about it, if someone turned to you while blood was pouring out of them like the Niagara Falls, and said “I love you,” and then flopped the next moment… wouldn’t you giggle a little bit at the unnaturalness of it all?  Maybe so, maybe not… but I would.  And secondly, there is one scene where this one girl chases this guy who threatens to kill her if she doesn’t have sex with him.  When she finally gets him, she takes her knife and stabs at his crotch so many times that I cannot count on both of my hands.  She twists and jabs and whatnot… Talk about a cockblock…  ㅋㅋㅋ

In essence, this movie is definitely one that you should watch… but if you get sick from seeing blood, don’t watch this.  There will be scenes in which blood squirts like a summer sprinkler. 😦 for you 🙂 for me.  Just remember, “Life is a game.  So fight for it and see if you’re worth it.”


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Okay, honestly, I didn’t expect to be scared by this movie at all.  You see, I’m a J/K Horror addict… it’s worse than dramas!  hehehe… anyways, I was looking for some K Horror movies to watch and fortunately, I found a whole list of them (they’ll keep me occupied for some time!).  So as I was reading all the plots, I came across APT (aka 9:56) and thought “what a dread of a plot… this plot does not seem one bit scary”.  Even the picture didn’t spook me.  Yet, something inside me encouraged me to watch this movie.  I gave in and at first, I was so bored by this movie (probably from my bias to begin with?).  HOWEVER, I continued to suffer through and found this to be perfect to add to my string of amazing horror movies.

I absolutely LOVE how this movie remains dim throughout; it adds to the feeling of loneliness and mystery.  And it definitely adds to the movie when the alarm goes off at 9:56.  Whenever it rang, I jumped!  *shiver*  Anyway, like any other J Horror or K Horror movie, it had a sad story to back up the ghost.  But I like how in this one, emotion did not make the ghost react differently.  That ghost girl still had so much hatred at the end of the movie!  I mean, she didn’t even back off when the woman was telling her how she understands and will suffer what she feels.  But this is what I love about the movie (even though it’s cruel of the ghost to do that).  It made me really upset to see what the ghost had to suffer through and unfortunately, I can understand her actions.  😦

Another reason to applaud this movie is because of the contrast in color.  The director or setting guy made a great decision when they chose to do that scene in which the ghost girl’s white dress turns blood red.  I absolutely love that!  It’s a great way to show how she changed from being an innocent girl to an evil, murderous one.  And the fact that the  blood rose from the foot of the dress up showed the gradual change to hatred and contempt.  Kudos! Kudos! Kudos!

Finally, I’ve realized that many of these Asian horror movies love to play off of “ghosts from suicides”.  I can see why, speaking that suicide is a big deal over there.  Of the many Asian horror movies I’ve watched, the ghosts are usually suicide victims who die in pain and depression.  And then they come back to haunt people…  This kind of a ghost actually has an effect on you (well, me, but maybe you? ;)).

P.S. Sorry for all the depressing, scary blogs lately… as I said, I’m an Asian Horror movie addict.  Again, my apologies if you don’t like the air of eeriness on my blog recently.  I’ll be posting other topics soon!  Lo giuro! 🙂

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EEK! For the past few days, I’ve been catching up with my horror movies, so my apologies for not blogging as much. 😦

So during that interim, I had the pleasure of watching South Korean horror movies (and I mean these ACTUALLY scared me!).  You see, the only South Korean horror movie that I watched before was Tale of Two Sisters, which honestly had no effect on me.  Sure, it was creepy as hell and freaked me out a little, but other than that, did not really scare me.  I don’t think I would even really consider that horror in my eyes, but whatever…  I don’t even get how it’s one of the best SK horrors out there.

Anyways, for the past 3 days, I had the chance to watch 2 great SK horror movies that really changed my mind about, well, korean horror.  And here comes my rant again!  Hehehe should be fun, I swear!  And just as a note, I don’t intend to offend anyone with what I say.  If you find it offensive, then simply don’t read it because I will express what I feel on my blog.  Thanks 🙂

☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆ SPOILER ALERT ☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆

The Doll Master

doll master

The first of the two I watched was The Doll Master (인형사).  As you can see from the movie poster, it was one scary movie!  The whole movie got me jittery about dolls.  Honestly, there is nothing freakier than having a human-taken-over-by-a-doll get revenge by chasing you around!  *shivers*  Throughout the movie, there was a constant reference to the dolls’ eyes and how dolls can feel emotion as well.  If you think about it, that’s weird…  Could it be true???  Dolls are made to look as human as possible, so…. I don’t know… the concept creeped me out.  Although the ending was a little weird to me, I found this extremely spine tingling and bloody!  YES!  This movie was absolutely gory near the end.  But back to the weird thing?  Right.  The ending was kind of weird because that doll that the girl didn’t recognize at first actually backed off once she remembered that the girl did love and protect her once awhile ago.  Personally, this made me think “say what?” because apparently now, dolls could have memories AND emotions!  Weird.  I know.  What’s more, they threw in the woman who was possessed  by the doll’s spirit!  This movie definitely made me glad that I was never that close to my dolls when I was a kid.  Good thing my mom didn’t really let me play with dolls and talk to them like an imaginary friend!  And she stored that doll from China away!  ‘Cause if she didn’t, I would’ve played with that doll A LOT and it looked like a ball-jointed doll.  (Thanks Mom).  Whatever, really weird (I know, I’m using the word yet again but it describes this movie really well!) movie, if you enjoy gory and eery movies, totally watch this one.  Worth your time AND money, although I watched it off the internet…

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The Wig

the wig

One of THE scariest SK horrors you will ever watch!  And I’m dead serious.  The Wig (가발) is not joke…  Yet the ending was sad and touching as well.  So I’ll start from the beginning.  From the beginning, I felt like the director really made a good setting because I felt scared and lonely in the darkness and quietness of the room.  And since the older sister could not talk, it just added to the scariness!  The lack of sound almost created a hollow noise in the background for the movie.  And I bet you guys know what I’m talking about; that silence is the creepiest thing you can possibly hear!  Even freakier was the wig itself.  OMGZZZZ it was so scary when the wig was placed on the rack but when the younger sister came back into the room, it was on the floor back where it originally was!  That’s just freaky, when a wig (lifeless object like the dolls) can suddenly hold human qualities, and MOVE!!!!!  Ewwww I was shivering the whole movie whenever I saw the wig.  The only part I didn’t really like was the history of the wig.  Apparently, this ghost wanted to be back with his lover, so it was like a Brokeback Mountain sort of a thing…  Not the ideal history of why the wig was haunted.  If you ask me, it kind of ruined the spookiness of the movie (and the wig).  And seriously, the guy didn’t even look like a guy!  But whatever, that’s irrelevant I guess… 😦  However, this movie had an amazing ending.  As it turns out, the older sister killed her younger sister for nothing.  The damn wig had nothing to do with her appearance change!  So, the wig just made the poor girl hot for her older sister’s boyfriend.  I kind of like the twist here because in a way, it was psychological for the older sister.  And jeezzz, she’s really screwed because now her ex-bf’s dead and her younger sister is dead as well…  It would really suck to be her… she should be the one saying “FML” not silly teenagers who have to do homework.  Anywayzzz, the touching ending really hit it off with me.  I loved this movie.  Totally recommend it for you gals and guys.  🙂  I hope to watch more SK movies in the future that are just as creepy….

P.S. I’ve never been so afraid of hair in my life! -O-

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Carved

Okay, so I just finished a really scary J-Horror movie, called Carved, aka Slit-Mouthed Woman.  It creeped me out more than Audition.  I think that says something.  Simply put, Audition is seriously one of THE scariest movies floating out there.  And if Carved can beat that, then doesn’t it say something about the movie?  Hahahha…. I’m still all jittery from this movie.

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SPOILER ALERT

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I especially adore this ending!  I love how the Slit-Mouthed Woman just doesn’t die!  You see her son go through hell just to kill her (and he even dies), yet, the freaking woman is still alive!  Omgzzzz… I guess it’s true what they said in the movie, “She can’t be killed”.  But it makes me wonder, why?????  Didn’t her son kill her and stick her in the closet?  How is she able to not die and still roam the earth.  I mean, if she’s a ghost, then people wouldn’t be able to see her.  And if she’s human, how is she getting her food to survive?  But then if you think about it, she MUST have died because no one was available to save her (or so I think) and she would’ve bled to death from the stab wounds!  *shakes head* I guess I can’t think too much about it.  After all, it’s just a movie.  So, just enjoy the plot, eh?  And I just have to say, she’s one freaky woman.  She can, like, exchange bodies with someone else just to survive.  I kind of wish that the movie furthered into what was wrong with her that made her cough so much and go insane enough to hit (and eventually kill) her children.  And what about the children’s father?  Ewwww….. I know this is gross, but WHO on earth would want to mate with that thing????  Come on, I know what you’re thinking, but those children came from somewhere!  Anyways, this was a lovely horror movie.  One of my favorites!  YEEEEEE~~~ Glad it’s one that I didn’t waste my time on! Hahaha… Well, I thought I’d just share this with you.  My afterthoughts on the movie, I mean.  I highly suggest you watch this movie, if you haven’t already, only if you’re not grossed out by blood and stuff.  Because this movie is actually pretty graphic in some parts.  So be prepared!

Am I Pretty?????Heheheh… sorry, I just had to… 🙂

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