Action / Drama / Mystery / Thriller
Action / Drama / Mystery / Thriller
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Abducted on a rainy night in 1988, the obnoxious drunk, Oh Dae-Su, much to his surprise, wakes up locked in a windowless and dilapidated hotel room, for an unknown reason. There, his invisible and pitiless captors will feed him, clothe him, and sedate him to avert a desperate suicide--and as his only companion and a window to the world is the TV in his stark cell--the only thing that helps Oh Dae-Su keep going is his daily journal. Then, unexpectedly, after fifteen long years in captivity, the perplexed prisoner is deliberately released, encouraged to track down his tormentor to finally get his retribution. However, who would hate Oh Dae-Su so much he would deny him of a quick and clean death? —Nick Riganas.
Uploaded By: FREEMAN
Aug 18, 2021 at 04:05 PM
grade Movie Reviews
A Korean Masterpiece
Oldboy is one hell of a movie. It is a film that is characterized by surrealism, gritty violence and raw emotion. The theme is about revenge and how it destroys one person. After viewing it, it left me silent for more than five minutes to contemplate on what I have seen. It was simply a masterpiece. It has proved that Koreans are one of the most creative when it comes to cinema. But mind you, this film is not for everyone. Especially for the weak at heart. Aside from revenge, it touches subject on incest as well. Nevertheless, it is a MASTERPIECE.The acting is world-class in this film. Choi Min-sik and Yu Ji-tae were simply amazing as Oh Daesu and Lee Woo-jin respectively. Credit should also be given to Gang Hye-jung as Mido. The characters are given emotional depth that one could sympathize for. They were not simply categorized as either good or evil but they were allowed to feel raw emotion. The direction was also spectacular from Park Chan-wook. And the soundtrack was mesmerizing. This is definitely a must-see especially for people who love another kind of entertainment. I could have given this a 11 out of 10 rating if only I am allowed to.
A couple of answers that may be useful to understand this film better!!
Hi! I am a South Korean national student here in London, and would like to give you some clues why the main character, Oh Dae-Soo, was kept in the private prison for exactly 15 years and why he ate the live octopus as I hope you all understand this film a little better.Firstly, his wife was killed one year after his being kept in the privately run prison. Obviously, Oh Dae-Soo didn't kill her but was suspected of murdering her. It must be done by Lee Yu-Jin who planned to have his sister's revenge upon Oh Dae-Soo. In South Korea, criminals of unsolved crimes including murder cases are forgiven/overlooked by law 15 years after the crimes were committed, which means a murder suspect wouldn't be charged or get punished unless the suspect is caught within 15 years after the murder. This is why Oh Dae-Soo was released 15 years after his wife was killed. Thus, he wouldn't be disturbed by the police investigation and Lee Yu-Jin could play with him at his own discretion.Secondly, nobody in the country eats live octopus like the way he ate in the film. It seems to me that the scene shows his uncontrollable anger against the man who he talked with on the phone and didn't say anything about the reasons why he was kept in the prison. If there was a piece of cake or a bowl of rice in front of him, I guess he would probably eat it in the same way he did with the octopus. So, please don't get it wrong that eating something alive is part of Korean culture. It should be understood itself in that extreme context.I saw this film several times with my friends. I didn't quite understand it in the first view but came to like it in the second time and it's one of my favourites now. I like the complicated plot and the shocking ending. As I'm studying translation of English and Korean, most of my classmates and friends are English who spent some time in South Korean and they liked this one the most among other Korean films.I hope my talk helps.
If only we were all living in Asia....
To start off; This is the one and only film that kept me quiet for a whole 5 mins after seeing it. I literally couldn't close my mouth, and yet there wasn't any sound coming out of it. Oldboy had such an impact on me that words are too little to describe that impact. Therefore this film is definitely in my top 3 films ever made. It belongs there because it has a massive ingredient that a lot of films seem to miss out on; a divine plot. Even though the acting and screenplay are world class, the plot is really the cherry on the cake.When it comes to screenplay Park Chan-Wook is unique (at least for western standards) in his way of filming. The colours are so vivid and it seems like he wanted every shot to be a piece of art. One tip: If you like the shooting in 'Oldboy', have a look at 'Sympathy for Lady Vengeance', the third part in Park's revenge-trilogy. It's even superior to the camera-work in 'Oldboy'. Don't, however, expect a story like Oldboy's, because you would be very disappointed.When it comes to acting and the music, this film is also one of the better films ever made. The music sticks in your head and every time I put in my Oldboy-DVD and the theme-song comes up, I'm just flooded with good memories (even though the plot doesn't have a single reason to be happy about). The characters are also presented very well by the outstanding cast. Especially Choi Min-Sik and Yu Ji-Tae set a very convincing performance. I really appreciate this film being respected as it should be, by having a place in the top 250. If, however, it was up to me it would be even higher in the ranking. I don't see why films like 'The Usual Suspects' or 'Memento', which are fantastic pieces of film-making and which without a doubt deserve a place in the top 250, are higher in the top 250 than 'Oldboy'. They serve the same cause; a fantastic plot. But those plots can't stand in the shadow or even come close to the plot of 'Oldboy'. The one and only reason is that those two films are better known and from a western production company. If we were all living in Asia, no doubt 'Oldboy' would be in the top 20 of all time. My advice to people who haven't watched this film yet: Go see it! This is definitely a must- see. If you have a weak stomach, pull yourself together and still watch it. Don't be as shallow as a lot of people here tend to be. Look beyond the violence and see the things I mentioned before: world class acting, cinematography, music and last but certainly not least the plot. Once you've opened yourself up you'll find a whole new world of cinema. Enjoy!
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