I love Koreatown in the springtime…

Wherein I blog about all things Korean in Los Angeles

Breaking into Jail August 31, 2007

Yesterday at KCC I caught Jailbreaker (광복절특사, KCC called it Jail Breaker and Cineline calls it Jail Breakers), a comedy about two convicts who break out of jail only to discover they’ve been granted a special Independence Day pardon and they have to break back into jail to take advantage of it. I was trying not to go into this with high expectations since I’d been disappointed last week by Marrying the Mafia, but in this case I thought the movie was hilarious. Okay, it wasn’t Radio Star level in poignancy or anything, but on the other hand, it wasn’t trying to be. It succeeded in being exactly what it was trying to be: a funny comedy (sad how those two things so often don’t go together).

Since yesterday evening I’ve been trying to figure out whether this is a comedy that could have been written/made in the US. I still haven’t completely figured it out, but I’m thinking not. The reason is the relationship between the prisoners and the guards. Sure, a fair amount of beating and mistreatment goes on. I mean, it’s a prison, after all. But I didn’t get the impression that the prisoners and guards were enemies in the same way that they would have been in a US movie. I mean, they were but they weren’t. It’s hard to explain. I’ve never been to prison in any country, so I have no idea what conditions and relations are really like there, but it just didn’t feel American to me.

There are plenty of funny moments, and naturally in the end our heroes… No, I won’t give it away. But I will say the writers wrote themselves into a corner, and I had no idea how they were going to get out of it, so it was fun watching how they did. If you’re looking for something lighthearted that will make you laugh, you might give this movie a shot.

Next month KCC is screening The General’s Son trilogy. Check it out here. They totally need to pay me for plugging them (but they don’t).

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Radio Star July 26, 2007

Filed under: movies & film — Raven @ 8:51 pm
Tags: , ,

I really enjoyed this film, which I caught tonight at KCC. The basic setup is that in order to earn his bail money, a has-been rock star has to go DJ in a small town. The film is subtle and poignant, but also packs a lot of laughs. Seriously, I haven’t laughed out loud at a film that many times in a long while.

Apparently I’m not the only one who thinks this film is pretty decent, since it was featured at the 10th Shanghai International Film Festival (I don’t know if it won anything and I can’t seem to find out) and was one of Korea’s four entries at the 21st Fukuoka Asian Film Festival.

At the very beginning I wasn’t sure I was going to like it, but of course you never know at the beginning of a film. Few films get a 100% endorsement from me, but this one is close. So if you have a chance to catch it, do so!

Note to the ajooma in the back row: Please do not answer your cell phone during the movie. But if you absolutely must answer it, please don’t ask the caller to call you right back so you have to disturb us by answering it again! Thanks.

Also, someone (presumably someone from KCC) was taking pictures of the audience during the movie. I’m very curious to know what these are going to be used for (and also curious to know if they came out in the dark theater), so if anyone from KCC happens to drop by here, please let me know.