A Bittersweet Life – Dalkomhan insaeng – 2005
A Bittersweet Life is the movie that inspired me to open this blog. I tried to briefly explain it all in my first entry, and then for some reason, i just never got back to it. You know, they say things always happen for a reason, and so after stalling for so long waiting for the right moment to share this with you, something (or should i say somebody?) happened and made me change my mind. And so here it goes:
A Bittersweet Life is a 2005 movie by Kim Ji-Woon. It tells the extremely intense story of Kim Sun-woo, an enforcer and hotel manager. His mobster boss, Mr.Kang, has to go out of town for some time and asks him to look after his little girlfriend Hee-soo, jealous and afraid she might be seeing younger men while he’s away. Hee-soo does in fact have a boyfriend, but when Sun-woo finds out, he surprisingly shows mercy on her. This results into an act of betrayal towards his boss, and that’s where everything starts going extremely wrong.. Mr Kang is determined to kill him. Sun-woo is determined to fight for his life. and so a big masterpieced path of revenge is set.
This movie is undeniably inspired by Oldboy. It’s about vengeance, about somebody who has to go thru a lot of violence to save his life, about tragedy and betrayal. The protagonist is Lee Byung-hun, that we have seen before in Cut and Joint Security Area (also from Park Chan-wook).
It is also about preciousness in a world that is cruel, and wrong, and those little special happy moments that make it worth it. Sun-woo is alienated from society, and falls in love with the thought of a woman who he’s only met for one day. He never sees her again, but in order to preserve her beauty he is determined to fight everything he has ever known, and sacrifice himself. There’s so much violence and blood combined with a sense of distant poetic tragedy, and Kim Ji-woon does an immaculate job at showing it. All topics that deeply influence and touch me.
If i had to pick only one word to describe this movie, it would definitely be: INTENSE. Absolutely a must see. Especially if you have somebody in mind..