Reviews - Specialty Releases


Film Review: Blood and Ties

Overloaded plotting undoes this initially absorbing crime story.

Nov 7, 2013

-By David Noh


filmjournal/photos/stylus/1389248-Blood_Ties_Md.jpg

For movie details, please click here.

The happy life Da-eun (Son Ya-jin) shares with her eccentric but lovable single father Soon-man (Kim Kap-soo) is shattered as she begins to suspect him of the terrible kidnapping and murder of a little boy which happened 15 years ago and which continues to obsess seemingly all of Korea. As much as she tries to deny it, Da-eun finds herself inexorably burrowing into her dad's past to uncover whatever secrets he may be hiding. In the process, she discovers a myriad of truths which would perhaps have been better left unknown.

Blood and Ties
is a potentially riveting crime melodrama that becomes undone by severe overplotting. Director Kuk Dong-suk and screenwriter Bin Sun-hwa frontload their technically slick but overextended film with so many twists and contrivances that it becomes not only a chore to keep up with, but downright exhausting. As if two possibly kidnapped children, a heinous murder, both of Da-eun's parents being simultaneously comatose in hospital beds and a surfeit of last-minute confessions weren't enough, the statute of limitations in the murder case under investigation is almost up, with the clock ticking away and the denouement occurring, of course, at the essential, very last minute. As well-acted and initially absorbing as the story is, it is frankly all too much of a muchness in the end.

Son has a quiet loveliness in the role of Da-eun and makes an affecting, super-beset heroine who endures all manner of indignities, but after some initial, quite charming scenes of familial togetherness, Kim simply does not have enough layers or depth to suggest the deep-seated complexities of Soon-man's tortured character. At the crucial moment of revelation in the film, he breaks into some forced, maniacal laughter that seems a particularly lousy histrionic choice. Jo An is delectably pretty as Da-eun's perky girlfriend, while Kang Shin-il chews the scenery as the understandably bereft father of the dead boy.


Film Review: Blood and Ties

Overloaded plotting undoes this initially absorbing crime story.

Nov 7, 2013

-By David Noh


filmjournal/photos/stylus/1389248-Blood_Ties_Md.jpg

For movie details, please click here.

The happy life Da-eun (Son Ya-jin) shares with her eccentric but lovable single father Soon-man (Kim Kap-soo) is shattered as she begins to suspect him of the terrible kidnapping and murder of a little boy which happened 15 years ago and which continues to obsess seemingly all of Korea. As much as she tries to deny it, Da-eun finds herself inexorably burrowing into her dad's past to uncover whatever secrets he may be hiding. In the process, she discovers a myriad of truths which would perhaps have been better left unknown.

Blood and Ties
is a potentially riveting crime melodrama that becomes undone by severe overplotting. Director Kuk Dong-suk and screenwriter Bin Sun-hwa frontload their technically slick but overextended film with so many twists and contrivances that it becomes not only a chore to keep up with, but downright exhausting. As if two possibly kidnapped children, a heinous murder, both of Da-eun's parents being simultaneously comatose in hospital beds and a surfeit of last-minute confessions weren't enough, the statute of limitations in the murder case under investigation is almost up, with the clock ticking away and the denouement occurring, of course, at the essential, very last minute. As well-acted and initially absorbing as the story is, it is frankly all too much of a muchness in the end.

Son has a quiet loveliness in the role of Da-eun and makes an affecting, super-beset heroine who endures all manner of indignities, but after some initial, quite charming scenes of familial togetherness, Kim simply does not have enough layers or depth to suggest the deep-seated complexities of Soon-man's tortured character. At the crucial moment of revelation in the film, he breaks into some forced, maniacal laughter that seems a particularly lousy histrionic choice. Jo An is delectably pretty as Da-eun's perky girlfriend, while Kang Shin-il chews the scenery as the understandably bereft father of the dead boy.
Post a Comment
Asterisk (*) is a required field.
* Author: 
Rate This Article: (1=Bad, 5=Perfect)

*Comment:
 

More Specialty Releases

Kingdom of Dreams and Madness
Film Review: The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness

Venture inside the hallowed hallways of Japan's most prestigious animation studio in this insightful documentary. More »

Antarctica: A  Year On Ice
Film Review: Antarctica: A Year on Ice

Thrilling, award-winning New Zealand doc about the mysterious and forbidding continent at the bottom of the world is not your usual travelogue, but a surprising exploration of the human soul and human needs. Happily, adorable penguins and stunning visuals also get screen time. More »

Remote Area Medical
Film Review: Remote Area Medical

Doc offers in-the-trenches evidence of dire need in the U.S. health-care system. More »

Immortalists
Film Review: The Immortalists

Attention-grabbing subject meets colorful characters in this science doc. More »

ADVERTISEMENT



REVIEWS

Penguins of Madagascar
Film Review: Penguins of Madagascar

Frenetic vehicle for supporting players from the Madagascar films will entertain kids but prove a little wearying for their parents. More »

imitation game
Film Review: The Imitation Game

Terrific biopic about world-class mathematician and social misfit Alan Turing, who, in spite of a painful struggle with his homosexuality, helped the Allies break the code of the Nazis' Enigma machine. More »

Player for the Film Journal International website.


ADVERTISEMENT



INDUSTRY GUIDES

» Blue Sheets
FJI's guide to upcoming movie releases, including films in production and development. Check back weekly for the latest additions.

» Distribution Guide
» Equipment Guide
» Exhibition Guide

ORDER A PRINT SUBSCRIPTION

Film Journal International

Subscribe to the monthly print edition of Film Journal International and get the full visual impact of this valuable resource for the cinema business.

» Click Here

SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES

Learn how to promote your company at the Film Expo Group events: ShowEast, CineEurope, and CineAsia.

» Click Here