The Railroad (Korea) (2007)


The Railroad

Two wounded souls. One destination.

Park Heung Sik, director of The Twins and the critically acclaimed short film “A Day”, presents his sophomore feature, The Railroad. During its screening at the 11th Pusan Film Festival, the film was well received by both critics and audiences. Starring Kim Kang Woo (Beast and the Beauty) and Son Tae Young (Sad Movie), The Railroad is a meticulously choreographed psychological drama about the lives of two unrelated people and the circumstances that ultimately bring them together.

Man Soo (Kim Kang Woo) is a train conductor. Everyday he performs the same old routines, and gradually his days begin to feel as uneventful and predictable as the ongoing rotation of the wheels on his train. One day, his train gets caught in a messy accident involving a passenger’s suicide, and he is forced to take leave from work. He gets on the last train.

Hanna (Son Tae Young) is an attractive college instructor who is having an affair with a married professor. Her world is turned upside down when his wife confronts her. Abandoned and betrayed by her lover, Hanna is forced to face her own demons. She quits her job, and hops onto the last train. A train conductor and a college instructor seem to share nothing in common. But for Man Soo and Hanna, brought together by fate, finding solace in the companion of a stranger has never been better.

Cast: Son Tae-Young, Kim Gang-Woo, Baek Jong-Hak
Directed: Park Heung-Sik
Genre: Romance / Drama
Runtime: 107 minutes
Country: Korea
Language: Korean
Subtitles: English

The Red Shoes (2005) (Korean)

redshoes

A mysterious pair of pink shoes found on a subway platform seems to bring a curse on the owner. Those that see them must have them and a grisly end awaits those that forcibly take them. A mother, who has just left her cheating husband, finds them and ghostly apparitions and strange occurrences follow her as she tries to make a go of it with her young daughter. A helpful decorator helps her solve the mystery and put the ghosts to rest. Or does he?

Cast: Kim Hye-su // Kim Seong-su \ Park Yeon-ah
Directed – Kim Yong-gyun
Writers – Hans Christian Andersen (fairy tale) // Kim Yong-gyun (screenplay)
Genre – Horror / Mystery / Thriller
Run Time – 103 min/109 min (uncut version)
Country – South Korea
Audio – Korean
Subtitles – English [Hardsubbed]
IMDB Links – http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0468683/

Freesia: Icy Tears (2007) (Japan)

During the Edo era, violent revenge was not only an acceptable practice, but an official one in which vendettas were authorized by the government. Freesia revives this concept of legal vendetta and brings it to a cold, contemporary Japan. Under the Vengeance Act, criminals receive official notice of their execution and face off in a designated area at a designated time with registered gun-wielding hitmen. Cool, silent, and impervious to pain, Kanou Hiroshi (Tamayama Tetsuji) just joined the Katsumi Vengeance Agency, and immediately establishes himself as an ace hitman with his sharp shooting and emotionless personality. Almost as cold is Higuchi (Tsugumi), who organizes the agency’s paperwork. She has some personal vendettas of her own to settle, amongst them against Higuchi’s acquaintance Toshio (Nishijima Hidetoshi). These three lonely people are haunted by a common memory, a military experiment years ago that forever changed their lives…

Based on the Matsumoto Jiro manga, Freesia is the latest film from director Kumakiri Kazuyoshi, who came to mainstream attention last year with Seishun Kinzoku Bat. Cool and riveting, the film represents a new stylistic venture for Kumakiri, who is known for his controversial topics and atypical stories. This beautifully shot film balances its sensational premise and slick visuals with calm direction and restrained acting, situating the gunplay and bloodshed against a compelling narrative. Leads Tamayama Tetsuji (Tegami, NANA), Nishijima Hidetoshi (Casshern, Sukida), and Tsugumi (Noriko no Shokutaku) bring inner life to their cold characters, letting unspoken wounds and repressed emotions linger hauntingly beneath the surface.

Cast: Tasuku Emoto // Shôji Kôkami \ Masaki Miura // Hidetoshi Nishijima
Directed – Kazuyoshi Kumakiri
Writers РJir̫ Matsumoto (comic) // Takashi Ujita (screenplay)
Genre – Action
Run Time – 103 min
Country – Japan
Audio – Japanese
Subtitles – English [.sub/.idx]
IMDB Links – http://imdb.com/title/tt0939869/

원더풀 라이프/Wonderful Life (2005) (Korea)

Han Seung-wan (Kim Jae Won) leaves for Singapore to surprise his girlfried on her birthday, and Jung Se-jin (Eugene) is on the same flight to say farewell to her deceased “first love” who died in Singapore. When literally bumping into each other at the airport, they accidentally take each other’s passports. They meet again and Seung-wan and Se-jin end up spending the day together. Se-jin knows about his girlfriend, who is two timing Seung-Wan with Min Do-Hyuk (Lee Ji Hoon). Partially to help Seung-Wan avoid from discovering the truth, Se-Jin spends the rest of her time with him. They both get drunk out of sadness of their loves, and end up sleeping together. Back in Korea, Se-jin discovers she is pregnant. She leaves to have the baby alone. A series of events happens for about a year, and Se-Jin’s clueless sister ends up spilling the secret to Seung-Wan at this engagement party, showing up with Han Shin-Bi (Jung Da Bin), his daughter, without Se-Jin. Seung-wan’s life is forced to face fatherhood and the anger of his two-timing girlfriend – Lee Chae-young (Han Eun Jung). Se-jin reappears as they are forced to marry by their respective families. Complicated love takes place, as Do-Hyuk starts to fall for Se-Jin, and so does Seung-Wan, though Se-Jin is more focused on her loving daughter, as something surprising happens to her. The rest of the story revolves around the family’s journey in learning to take responsibility, and learning to love each other.

Broadcasted – 07-Mar-2005 to 26-Apr-2005
Genre – Drama, Comedy, Romance
Directed – Lee Chang Han // Jo Soo Won
Writers – Jin Soo Wan
Country – South Korea
Audio – Korean
Quality -High
Subtitles – English [.srt]
Episode Run Time – 1 Hour 5 Minutes
Total Episodes – 16
Status – Completed [16/16]
Links – wiki.d-addicts.com

Cast:
Kim Jae Won as Han Seung-wan
Eugene as Jung Se-jin
Lee Ji Hoon as Min Do-hyun
Han Eun Jung as Lee Chae-young
Joo Hyun as Han Bum-soo (Seung-wan’s father)
Kim Hye Ok as Pyo Jae-kyung (Se-jin’s mother)
Choi Joon Yong as Han Seung-pil (Seung-wan’s older brother)
Yoon Hyun Sook as Baek Hyun-joo (Seung-pil’s wife)
Kim Hyo Jin as Jung Il-jin (Se-jin’s older sister)
Kim Seung Min as So Chang-myung (Seung-wan & Do-hyun’s flying academy classmate)
Jung Da Bin as Han Shin-bi (Seung-wan and Se-jin’s daughter)

Deadly Outlaw: Rekka (2002) (Japan)

After Kunisada (Riki Takeuchi)’s Yakuza leader and father figure is brutally murdered, he and his best friend (Kenichi Endo) go on a two-man mission to avenge his death, killing other Yakuza leaders leading to a final confrontation by the old man’s killers.

Cast: Riki Takeuchi // Ryôsuke Miki \ Kenichi Endo // Mika Katsumura
Directed – Takashi Miike
Genre – Crime / Drama / Thriller
Run Time – 96 min
Country – Japan
Audio – Japanese
Subtitles – English [.srt]
IMDB Links – http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0352465/

Quiz King (2005) (Korea)

34 year old Jin Man (Han Suk Kyu, better known for his macho roles in The Scarlet Letter and Tell Me Something) used to run a large labor union but now stays at home whilst his wife goes out to work everyday. He is a good cook and housekeeper and dedicates his life to looking after their young daughter.

However, when he gets caught out in a confidence scam and loses all the money he had put aside for his father-in-law’s operation, Jin Man takes desperate measures. Slipping on a dress he applies to take part in the TV game show “Quiz Show For Wives,” in the hope of winning the jackpot.

Quiz King (Directed by Yoo Seon-dong, starring Han Seok-Kyu, Sin Eun-kyeong) is a comedy, and the catchphrase for the movie reads: A male housewife’s delightful coming-out.

As can be inferred by the phrase coming-out, this movie comes with the premise that it is an embarrassing secret for a man to stay at home. The main character, Oh Jin-man, betrays this premise and appears on a TV quiz show to reveal his identity to the world. He suffers a brief period of despair when his wife leaves home because of her embarrassing husband, but the couple end up living happily ever after.

Han Suk-gyu is natural and comfortable in his role, starring as Oh Jin-man, a former elite corporate worker who has been a homemaker for six years. His sudden transformation, wearing mascara, fake eyelashes and high heels, is hilarious. Shin Eun-gyung stars as his wife, a master of ceremonies at a broadcast station.

Jin-man enters a mutual-aid union hoping to receive more interest, but when someone runs off with the money, he is forced to raise 30 million won. He decides to go for the prize money in a quiz show for housewives, and enters the preliminaries dressed as a woman. His identity is revealed, however, but the broadcast station realizes this could be a hit and allows him to enter the show anyway. An expert in both current affairs and homemaking, Jin-man wins for three consecutive weeks and becomes a celebrity.

Cast: Han Suk-kyu // Kim Su-mi \ Kong Hyeong-jin // Lee Ju-hyeon
Directed – Yun Seon-Dong
Genre – Comedy
Run Time – 107 min
Country – South Korea
Audio – Korean
Subtitles – English [.idx/.sub]
IMDB Links – http://imdb.com/title/tt0479716/