2014.10.10 Now Playing
Family, drama / 97/ Korean
Based on a true story, “Compassion” hones in on a prominent problem in Korean society: school bullying.
After outcast Jin-ah commits suicide, her death has a heavy influence on Ha-na (Lee Cheong-mi), who seems like she comes from the perfect family.
But this turns out not to be the case. Ha-na witnesses her father beating her mother and starts to hang out with the wrong crowd as a result.
After a while, Ha-na’s classmates start to target her and she becomes a victim of bullying.
Soon, Ha-na becomes determined to take her own life, just as Jin-ah did.
“Compassion” is the debut of Shin Sung-sup, a musical director.
“Most people don’t want to reveal their broken heart, but a wounded heart cannot be cured without compassion,” said Shin, of his film.
The director also added that he believes young people in Korea should try to overcome problems with the help of others instead of keeping their issues to themselves.
Dracula Untold (15)
Fantasy, action/ 92/ English
“Dracula Untold” focuses on the 1897 novel “Dracula” by Irish writer Bram Stoker. It is the feature-length film debut of Gary Shore and is written by Burk Sharpless and Matt Sazama.
Transylvanian Prince Vlad Tepes’s kingdom is threatened by Sultan Mehmed II, who demands a thousand boys, including Vlad’s own son, to join his army.
Vlad leaves for Broken Tooth Mountain with his wife in order to save their child.
On the journey, they encounter an ancient sorcerer, Caligula, and enter a Faustian bargain.
The prince receives the strength of 100 men and the speed of a falling star, which is enough to destroy his enemies.
Vlad becomes invincible, but he is tortured by an insatiable thirst to drink human blood. His desire leads him to embrace his destiny as the vampire Dracula.
Luke Evans of “Fast & Furious 6” stars in “Dracula Untold.”
Horror, thriller/ 100/ Korean
Manholes are common in cities; they are objects that are simple to spot yet are easy to be indifferent to.
This is the background of “Manhole,” a horror film about a serial killer.
A hearing impaired child, Soo-jung (Kim Sae-ron), is kidnapped by murderer, Soo-chul (Jung Kyung-ho). Soo-chul, who uses a manhole to entrap his victims before killing them.
To chase Soo-chul, Soo-jung’s older sister (Chung Yu-mi) jumps into the hole in the ground before it’s too late.
The story of why Soo-chul becomes a serial killer is also explored, which will make people think about how we often ignore the little things - just like the manholes we pass by every day.
This tale about a hearing impaired victim in a confined space will terrify viewers.
Salmon Fishing in The Yemen (12)
Drama/ 107/ English
The title itself of “Salmon Fishing in The Yemen” triggers curiosity.
The film, based on British writer Paul Torday’s book of the same title, is about an utterly ludicrous project that is being set up to fish for salmon in the Middle East.
Internationally acclaimed actor Ewan McGregor plays fisheries expert Dr. Alfred.
One day, it is suggested that he take part in a scheme going on in the Middle East, which is overseen by one of the wealthiest men in the area.
He turns down the offer in an instant, saying that it is an absurd and money-wasting project. However, he gets a threatening call from the prime minister’s office.
Against his will, he joins the team and meets Harriet Chetwode-Talbot (Emily Blunt), who is in charge of the group’s finances. The two fall in love at first sight and their romantic journey in the barren desert begins.
Emily Blunt, who made a name for herself in Korea by appearing as a sneering assistant in “The Devil Wears Prada” (2006), has successfully transformed herself into an intelligent and charming character in her latest film.
While the original book was more about political satire, this movie adaptation focuses on the romantic and hilarious moments that regularly crop up between the characters.
Kill Your Darlings (19)
Drama, romance/ 103/ English
“Harry Potter” star Daniel Radcliffe has grown up and is back in the public eye with thrilling literary drama “Kill your Darlings,” in which he plays gay Beat Generation poet Allen Ginsberg.
The film is the directorial debut of American filmmaker John Krokidas, who takes on an ambitious bid to depict a literary movement born in the 1940s at Columbia University.
Despite the fact that it is his first work, Kroikidas’s movie has already had the honor of being invited to prestigious film festivals such as the Sundance Film Festival, the Venice International Film Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival, among others.
Upon entering school, Allen befriends Jack Kerouac (Jack Huston) and William Burroughs (Ben Foster), who are not your typical hardworking, mainstream students.
Instead of sitting in front of their desks, the three find inspiration in breaking rules and refuse to allow their strong characters to be tamed.
Along the way, Allen comes across the extremely attractive student Lucien Carr (Dane DeHaan) and together they embark on a literary movement called a “New Vision” to search for something more creative.
But then something happens to Lucien, and nothing is the same ever again.
Whistle Blower (12)
Drama/ 114/ Korean
In 2005, one of the main broadcasting stations in Korea revealed the sensational news that a scientist’s stem cell research was fraudulent and unethical based on an informer’s tip.
At the time, the public revered Hwang Woo-suk not only as a pioneering scientist, but also as a national hero who had found cures to diseases considered incurable.
When the truth broke in the news, the nation was absolutely shocked.
Although “Whistle Blower” is based on the scandal, the movie stresses that it is a fictional story.
In the film, Park Hae-il plays Min-cheol, the chief producer of a news program, who hunts down Dr. Lee (Lee Geung-young) after getting an anonymous call from one of the scientist’s researchers. The informer imparts that the result of Lee’s stem cell research was manipulated.
The relationship between the film and the scandal has been a topic of discussion in the media.
The director, however, argues that the movie focuses on the struggles that Min-cheol faces in his battle for the truth.
The film’s major themes encompass political pressure, a power struggle within the press and the individual characters’ inner conflicts.