Thursday, July 10, 2014

New World (신세계) (2013)


Director:Hoon-jung Park
Writer:   Hoon-jung Park
Cast:      Jung-Jae Lee, Min-sik Choi, Jeong-min Hwang
Language:Korean

The boss of Goldmoon crime syndicate is dead and choice for succession is in between two of his underlings. The cops want to influence the succession using one of their undercover cops who has been on this assignment for ten years but wants out now.

It is Eastern Promises meets Infernal Affairs meets Donnie Brasco meets Godafther. One would expect with this many possible influences it will be uneven with jarring cliches. It is anything but. Stylishly shot with subtle performances to go with some great set-piece sequences, it is a really ambitious project. Normally I find East Asian languages to be not very subtle sounding but since this film has lesser amount of dialog compared to other films of this genre, it was really fine. Jung Jae-Lee gives a Michael Corleonesque performance and other male characters are also well written and developed. Twists are kind of predictable but the film is not really about them.

I was not at all surprised to see that it is part of a planned trilogy and I wouldn't be surprised if one of them is a prequel and the other a sequel to the events in New World. Something similar was done with Infernal Affairs but with not so good results. Lets just hope these guys make a better fist of it. 

Rating: 5/5