Friday, May 04, 2007

Family Ties

Family Ties (2006; dir. Kim Tae-Young) 3
Three shorts of overlapping storylines provide a clever plotline for this drama, though the film is primarily an acting vehicle for the star characters. The complex family relationships of a young boy, his sister, and his later girlfriend provide ample material; in the dramatic tradition, things get a bit over-the-top at points. Excepting the exceedingly cheesy final sequence, this is an enjoyable production.

Tazza: The High Rollers

Tazza: The High Rollers (2006; dir. Choi Dong-hoon) 3
While the plot and characters of this gambling genre movie are certainly tired (young apprentice, aging master, comic sidekick, femme fatale, gangster nemesis, etc.), the directing and performances are strong enough to keep the action moving … mostly. The main character is a little dull, and the director took their time laying out the non-surprise ending. But the gambling scenes are spot-on.

D-Day (a/k/a Roommates)

D-Day (a/k/a Roommates) (2006; dir. Kim Eun-kyung) 3
It appears that producer Ahn Byeong-ki’s name is indeed capable of being attached to a horror film that’s not a complete dud—by wisely leaving the directing to someone else. There’s still a heavy reliance on jarring (or just loud) sound effects and visuals borrowed from other films, but the plot holds up: a bunch of students are cooped up in a college entrance-exam prep school and gradually go berserk.