Monday, 9 August 2010
The Good, The Bad, The Weird
Dir: Kim Ji-woon (A Tale of Two Sisters)
Cast: Song Kang-ho, Lee Byung-hun, Jung Woo-sung
South Korea, 2010
Seen: August 7, 2010 at The Bloor
Reason to see: I've been waiting to see this film for over 2 years!
It finally happened. After 2 years of waiting, I finally to see The Good, The Bad, The Weird. *And* on the big screen at The Bloor no less. The first time I saw the trailer for the film back in June 2008 I was blown away but the high production values, mischievous spirit, fantastic music and overall western goodness. I watched the trailer on repeat so many times in these 2 years that I feel personally responsible for it now looking slightly distressed. What's an amazing thing about the trailer and the film, is that even with a 2 year lead up and several disappointments along the way (namely not seeing it at TIFF in 2008), was that it still not only met but exceeded my expectations. Christmas came early for me this year, and in the form of this Kimchi western.
The Good, The Bad, The Weird is a South Korean western directed by Kim Ji-woon (A Tale of Two Sisters) and stars Jung Woo-sung (The Good), Lee Byung-hun (The Bad) and Song Kang-ho (The Weird). It takes a fairly standard western theme of searching for treasure and applies a frantic but ridiculously well put together plot that's driven by the fantastic performances of the sensationally charismatic leads.
The action in the film should please anyone that watches it, as it's entertaining and inventive at every turn. The shoot-outs, action sequences and chase scenes in the film are absolutely glorious, they have high energy, are well choreographed and continue to showcase and solidity the strengths of each of the key characters through the precision of The Good, the brutality of The Bad and with humour in The Weird. Every aspect of the film from the costume design to the music to the editing continue to drive home these characters, it's rare to see the realization of such a complete vision on the screen and for it to be done with such care and excellence.
One of the things that makes The Good, The Bad, The Weird stand a cut above, is that it's a crossover film. It's a film where fans of the specific genre will love it, in this case westerns, but also a film which everybody and their neighbour will enjoy because it's just that good. It has lots of homage-ness for the fans, but stands completely strong on it's own with a great story, fantastic characters and brilliant acting. We have seen more crossover film recently in Let the Right One In / Låt den rätte komma in (vampire), Moon (scifi) and Black Dynamite (blaxploitation), and I always hope to see more as they bring film lovers of all genres together in such an amazing way.
Entertaining and high energy from start to finish, the film is a sweeping epic that fires on all cylinders. The plot is interesting, the characters are compelling, the action is ferocious and the adventurous spirit runs you on a high for the entirety of the film. It was worth the 2 year wait and already can't wait to see it again and again.
I'd highly recommend seeing it on the big screen if you can. If not, it will be released on DVD on August 17, 2010 and you can check it out over at Amazon.ca and Amazon.com.
See also DVD Review of The Good The Bad The Weird.
Shannon's Overall View:
I loved it it just as much as I thought I would
I own it
I highly & widely recommend it, especially to western fans
See also: The Good The Bad The Weird DVD Review
7 minute late start (normal for venue which usually clears the popcorn before starting film) but zero preshow of commercials or previews
Return to Film Reviews
© Shannon Ridler, 2010
All content on Movie Moxie is written by Shannon Ridler, © 2006 - 2012