my Movie

Movie Details

Title:   The Host
Director:   Joon-ho Bong
Year:   2006
Genre:   Monster
Times Seen:   1
Last Seen:   09.25.06

Other Movies Seen By This Director (1)
- Memories of Murder

Notes History
Date Viewed Venue Note
09.25.06Alamo South LamarThis Screening is part of event: FantasticFest 2006
Speaking of really good movies, this was awesome. It's a Korean monster movie BUT... hold up a second, curtail your expectations based on that phrase. It's like a very serious modern-day Korean monster movie. The creature is all CG instead of man-in-suit and it's shot beautifully and the story is really that of a family trying to rescue a young daughter than any sort of global town-wrecking rampage.

The mosnter itself is a mutated fish-thing that lives in this river in Seoul and one day crawls up on the banks to start eating people. From there it actually becomes more about the government's response to the attack and what happens afterward. While funny, the movie is actually very sad. It's a strange line that it walks but it does it very well, alternating between the two emotions pretty rapidly... and then occasionally becoming Jaws levels of suspenseful fun whenever the monster attacks.

Actually what surprised me most is how much the movie tilts anti-bureacracy and government. The Korean govt. officials are portrayed with Kafka-esque levels of red-taped ignorance, and the American army and government are seen as downright nasty, using the event as an opportunity instead of taking care of the problem (gee, wonder where they get that). A lot of the suspense actually comes from these innocent family members as they struggle against the paralyzing web of government institution... which I didn't immediately suspect when I heard it was a Korean monster movie, ya know?

So this movie is I think the first film which I'd peg as Fantastic during this festival. I really liked Severance, thought Hatchet was really good, liked Unrest, Frostbite, and Apocalypto; Bug was great but this movie is fantastic.
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