Cinema Mishmash

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Lady Vengeance

October 7th, 2006 · No Comments

Mommy's gonna kick some ass now.The last installment in director Park Chan-wook’s revenge trilogy, Lady Vengeance is the most restrained and textured of the lot. The film is alternatively entitled Sympathy for Lady Vengeance to parallel the first of the trilogy, Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance. The second film, Oldboy, introduced most of the Western audience to Park’s unique visual and narrative style. But for my money, his earlier film, Joint Security Area, is the best introduction to the humanity and humor that permits this trilogy’s brutal subject matter to resonate with its audience. The plot here appears familiar: a beautiful woman (Lee Yeong-ae) is sent to prison unjustly. In contrast to Oldboy, though, we know the reason for her imprisonment (she was protecting her daughter) and the object of her vengeance (a sociopath school teacher). However, the story takes a turn that makes this journey a much more complex study of human nature than one would expect from the run of the mill revenge flick. The interview with Park on the DVD, although slow due to a live translator, provides a fascinating insight on the director’s approach to the trilogy and his femme fatale.

Tags: Action/Adventure · Director · Drama · Foreign Language

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