Y for the Yellow Sea

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We are at the fag end of the A to Z listing and the first thought that came to my mind was “You, Me and Dupree” but I have done quite a few Hollywood flicks so refrained from doing the same. I have missed out quite a few movies from quite a few countries and as I kept racking my brain, I was hit with The Yellow Sea, a Korean Movie with a lot of angst, pain and pathos, a reflection of our depressing society that almost drives us off the ledge.

The Yellow Sea is the second chase movie by the director Na Hong Ching. The basic difference between his first and this movie is that this one is a noir shot on large canvas and superbly brings out the violence in humans which, just creates more chaos than solving anything.

Gu Nam is a Chinese taxi driver with Korean descent who is hopelessly in debt because of his gambling addiction. His wife goes to Seoul to provide some monetary relief but unfortunately she just disappears. Lovelorn, lonely, dejected, broke, he is saddled with a daughter who he can’t take care of and sends off to his mother’s place. To add to his troubles are his neighbours and friends who chide him for losing his wife to perhaps another man. Fuelled with a mix of loathing, jealousy and insecurity he takes up a contract for killing a man in Seoul because it promises to pay well and diminish all his troubles. Gu Nam smuggles his way to Seoul and as one day he anxiously waits for his target to arrive, the unexpected happens and he is chased by his own gang and the Korean police. Though Gu Nam is not the most likeable man, the audience starts to sympathize and empathize.

The Yellow Sea starts off slowly and gains pace as the movie moves forward ending in a feverish crescendo. There is a lot of gore and brutal violence and amazingly there are no guns. The movie is laced with whooshing knives, brandishing hatchets and a numbing pain caused by blunt animal bones.

Where the movie makes a mark is it provides characters with more than fifty shades of grey, breaking archetypes and absolutes and almost identifiable (if not the blood and gore) making even the worst of them likeable to us.

Here is the trailer of  the Yellow Sea

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