Thursday, 21 August 2008

M (2007)

Korean title: 엠 (Em)
Directed by: Lee Myeong-se

What's popping:

Be warned, this is one really quirky thriller. It doesn't unfold conventionally and may just turn off the average moviegoer.

After sitting through all the twists and turns, there was no "light bulb" moment for me. In short, after watching the film, I still can't quite understand what the heck happened.

What made me sit through it? The charismatic lead Kang Dong-won. Before this, I have not seen any of his works, but one thing's for sure, his screen presence compelled me to finish this at times meandering movie.

Kang plays a novelist named Minwoo who's working on a follow-up novel to his recent bestseller. However, things aren't going well - he's plagued by nightmares, hallucinations and feels that he's being followed.

The Doctor perscribes him Prozac and all hell breaks loose. Well, that is to say viewers are taken for a ride in his extremely convoluted mind where there's no separation between fantasy and reality.

Consultation: 'What did you just say Doc? How many times
in a day
do I take it?'

Very much like Minwoo, viewers will be wondering whether what happens is only a dream or reality. In all the confusion, there are some things that are real.

A sweet young lady named Mimi (Lee Yeon-hee) who has a crush on our tortured protagonist and his worried girlfriend (Kong Hyo-jin). Oh, and then there's that bar called Lupin, which probably is only a figment of our protagonists' imagination.

Yes, it is quite a chore keeping up with the pil-popping Minwoo. All that Prozac probably caused his condition. Also, the issue with his first love doesn't quite anchor the film as it should.

Director Lee Myeong-se immerses the movie in an aura of mystery with dark and sombre sets, as well as quirky details.

Lonely: Minwoo (Kang) drowns his sorrows in wine.

Take for instance that time when Minwoo was having lunch in a private room with a publisher. A table/portable fan was switched on and when the oscillating fan was directly pointed at the person who was speaking, his speech was "chopped up" by the blowing wind.

M is a head-scratching flick and after finishing the movie, my only comment when Orchid asked me how the movie was was "Weird".

The plot:

A novelist who is working on a deadline suffers from paranoid delusions. Why is that girl following him around? Why does the smoke-filled Lupin bar only appear at night? Is his repressed memories getting the better of him or did the Doctor give him the wrong perscription?

Who's that girl?: Is Mimi (Lee) real
or imagined?

Watch it:

The DVD was just lying around at home (cue Twilight Zone, I'm not on Prozac). Don't know who lent it to us :-P.

Purchase the movie here

Pics credit: HanCinema


Orchid said...

woi...i bought it with my hard earned cash ok! that's why it was lying at home.

Liz said...

Ha ha ha ha ha..I didn't know that. So it's ours? Ha ha ha *ROTFL*

Jinnie said...

this is a good movie for me..
i cried when the movie ended.
Not an easy understanding movie for most people. ^^

Somesort of a memoir that he cheerish once that he swept out from his life and memory until one day it recalls and all the passion and love flush back to him and only ended up knowing the person he loved was already dead.. it was hard for him, for them both. A first love story.

it's also trying to say what has gone cant be erase from your memory. it will somehow flush back to you. Even you cant grab hold onto it.. at least there's a memoir of us together in us. A story to ask everybody to grab hold on all chanced to the one you love.

Rachel said...

I'll have to watch it online soon. It's actually on my list of movies to check out. Wish I could get a Region 1 or 0 copy. ergh

Liz said...

Thanks jinnie for the comment! But I think you just gave the spoiler away :-P.

For those who'd rather watch for themselves what goes on, please read the comment after you've watched the show.

Now everyone's gonna read the comment right? Sigh.

peepoo said...

i didn't understand the movie either...a common thing for me with many other k-movies! maybe i'm just shallow but a movie loses it's luster when it tries too hard to be too artistic, obscure or in this movie. towards the end, i kind of get the idea that LYH is his first love who passed away but her soul doesn't know that she's dead? i don't know...still confused! :P


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