Memories of Murder

Memories of Murder ★★★★★

Ever hear a creepy tale you wish you never heard? Memories of Murder is just like that tale which, as it unravels, makes you wish you never dived into.

If you're prepared to board your subconscious to a level where you don't mind being mentally disturbed and psychologically petrified for a couple of hours, then allow Joon-ho Bong to do just that.

As soon as you've settled down with a particular scene's mood, your mind is tested with a sudden shift of emotions in which you will frequently find yourself lost in how to process what you're currently being accustomed to. Joon-ho was very articulate in making sure the viewer doesn't get comfortable with the plot. If you ask me, this is a big risk which a lot of filmmakers prefer not to take. If the risk pays off, it resonates well with the viewer; if not, the viewer might never trust the movie enough to like it.

In this case, the risk paid off much better than I initially expected. Even the smallest of subtlety pushes you to think about character motivations probably more than you would question anybody's motivation in real life. Therein lies the brilliance of Memories of Murder. It's not merely the telling of a disturbing tale of the past, it's a lesson in storytelling.

Add to that the superb cinematography of Hyung-ku Kim and you have on your hands one of the films humanity should be proud of producing.

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