A haunting score and beautifully atmospheric cinematography by Kim Hyung-gu round out the achievements of this unique and engaging Korean thriller.
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Suspenseful, surprising, and psychologically rich.
A powerful, slow-burning portrait of human fallibility.
As exciting for its narrative twists and turns as for its Korean textures and rhythms.
Uses dark humor, incisive characterizations and social commentary to infuse its familiar detective tale with a distinctive flair.
What distinguishes Memories of Murder, setting it apart from rank-and-file thrillers, is its singular mix of gallows humor and unnerving solemnity.
Becomes something of a rainswept Korean koan on both the nobility and futility of persistence in the face of obviously insurmountable odds.
It's an altogether remarkable piece of work, deepening the genre while whipping its skin off, satirizing an entire nation's nearsighted apathy as it wonders, almost aloud, about the nature of truth, evidence, and social belonging.
It takes enormous skill to pull off such a high-wire act without diminishing the gravity of the situation, but Bong and his first-rate cast are up to the task.
The script is as sloppy as Song's unkempt cop, sprinkled with intriguing ideas and imaginative details that, like the investigation, simply get lost in blind alleys.