Movie Review: Memories of Murder (2003)

Memories of Murder [Salinui Chueok] (2003)

Based on the real-life series of murders which occurred in South Korea, Memories of Murder is a fictional account of the investigations proceedings. Although suspenseful and sometimes creepy, it is not a slasher or horror movie. The serial killer takes second-stage to the detectives and their many struggles; including a lack of proper training, incompetence, and infighting. Director Joon-ho Bong continually changes the films tone throughout by masterfully intertwining offbeat, dark comedy with the grisly murders. This unorthodox injection of humor within such a morose story is remarkably effective without ever appearing forced or inappropriate. He also does well in avoiding prevalent serial killer movie clichés; like creating convoluted explanations for the killer’s action and having the killer send messages to taunt the police. Read more of this post


Shutter Island (2010) review

Shutter Island (2010)

Shutter Island is the fourth collaboration between Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese and although it’s not their best film together (The Departed), it is a very powerful and absorbing thriller. With a constantly twisting and turning story, nothing is what it appears to be, taking the audience along for a dark and wild ride. While the films premise is relatively simple, its journey and conclusion are anything but straightforward. Read more of this post

Let the Right One In (2008) review

Let the Right One In   [Låt den rätte komma in]    (2008)

Vampire movies come in a variety of styles; horror, action, comedy, and romance. Let the Right One In falls somewhere between horror and romance, but not in the sense of The Twilight Saga. Focusing on two preteens, childhood awkwardness and companionship take the place of romantic lust and passion. The outcome is a gratifying tale filled with tragedy, uncertainty, and hope. Read more of this post

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo review

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009)

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is the first of a trilogy based on the Swedish novels of Stieg Larsson. As I have not read the novels, I cannot comment on their transition to the big-screen. This film, however, is excellent as a stand-alone and is very well executed in nearly every aspect. I very much look forward to the rest of the trilogy which has already been filmed and released.

The story, set in Sweden, follows Mikael (Michael Nyqvist), a journalist facing prison after being set-up, and Lisbeth (Noomi Rapace), a hacker on probation with a mysterious and troubled past. Their paths cross in the quest to solve a 15 year old cold-case disappearance. Read more of this post

The Wolfman (2010) review

The Wolfman (2010)

The first question I ask myself when watching a remake/reboot is “what’s the purpose?” Does it approach the story in a way different than the original, improve any glaring faults or shortcomings, or change the setting to something more modern? Unfortunately The Wolfman not only accomplishes none of these, it’s also devoid of the original’s excellent atmosphere and suspense. Instead, adding only an obscene amount of gore and disappointingly mediocre CGI/makeup (considering its $85M budget). Read more of this post