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Bedevilled


South Korea, you devil.

Rod Lott October 3rd, 2012

Forced to take a vacation from her bank job after a series of stressful blow-ups, Hae-won (Seong-won Ji) leaves Seoul for a week's stay on a farming island where her childhood friend, Bok-wan (Yeong-hie Seo, The Chaser), lives with her extended family.

bedevilled

Although the island is rich in scenery, Hae-won learns quickly the place is hardly paradise. Bok-wan's husband is an abusive, philandering wretch — not the best environment for their cute, 10-year-old daughter, who's the only child around.

It's difficult to talk further about Bedevilled's story without giving away its twists in plotting, so I won't, other than to say an avoidable tragedy occurs, and with it comes a shift in viewpoint and briefly a shift in genre.

Through all this, debuting director Chul-soo Jang gets strong performances from his two leads that helps bring the story's power to a terrifying potential, but damned if that isn't diluted by his refusal to pick one of several endings and stick to it. He doesn't know when to quit, even when it feels like the film is winding down to a logical conclusion.

It's a great place to visit, but you wouldn't want to live there. So disturbing are several parts that I never want to go back, no matter how much Bedevilled excels as a thriller. —Rod Lott

Hey! Read This:
The Chaser DVD review   

 
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