Monday, April 03, 2006

Kwon Sang Woo Running Wild

Seems many of the Korean actors are determind to move beyond just being known as pretty boys, so they've taken on roles that require them to err... look 'tough' and 'unflattering'. Jang Dong Gon, Kim Rae Won and Kwon Sang Woo being just 3 of them.

Gist of the story:
KSW is a tough, rough, violent (yes, violent, at the rate he keeps beating people up) but upright detective. He's had a very difficult life.. his mother is seriously ill and needs money for a surgery, his younger step-brother has just been released from jail for some traid activities. And then this younger step-brother got killed. And the next 104 minutes is about KSW running wild to avenge his brother by napping the killers.

Yoo Ji Tae is a public prosecutor, who goes strictly by the books. He's working hard to nap the head of the triad, to the point of his marriage breaking down. And the next 104 minutes is about him working together with KSW to bring down this guy at all costs. Actually, I couldn't understand why YJT would need this quick punching detective, who is not above breaking some laws on his team.

Maybe KSW does things that he, YJT would very much like to do at times but is not able to as law enforcing officer. Certainly, the last 15 minutes or so, particularly the last scene convinced me of this. Personally, I thought there was a bittersweetness in the last scene when the punishment carried out. Shall not spoil it for you all by telling you all the ending.

Now, I do like gangster movies, please don't be mistaken. But I do think there was too much fighting and beating people into unrecognisable pulp and running, just for the sake of fighting, beating people into unrecognisable pulp and running... not necessary in that order.

In any case, there isn't anything wrong with their acting. I really like YJT but the storyline could have been a little stronger....I actually like the guy who was playing the baddie too (as in I was impressed by him). There's supposed to be a mutual brotherly feeling between YJT and KSW as the movie progress, but err....I'm sorry to say it wasn't very convincing, at least not to me anyway. Unless I'm missed out something by sitting in the third row from the front.

However, I am always impressed when an artiste tries on a different role. It means he's serious about acting and doesn't mind looking 'ugly' if the role requires it.

And although I wouldn't say that KSW looks ugly in Running Wild, his unshaven face is constantly covered with scars, bandages and plasters. So if you're going to watch the movie to see the KSW that we all know in Stairways to Heaven, then you're in for a huge dissapointment. But then I'm sure all his fans already know this and will still support him, right? (Isn't that what fans are for?)

Btw, must say that KSW does fight rather well.

Running Wild opens in Singapore on 6th April.

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