Blu-ray Review:The Man from Nowhere (2010)

the man from nowhere blu ra Blu ray Review:The Man from Nowhere (2010)

The Man from Nowhere (Ajeossi) is a revenge flick out of South Korea that at first glance, eerily resembles The Professional but differs in many respects.  Actor Won Bin, who previously played a mentally challenged young man in the awesome movie Mother (I highly recommend seeing that as well), is a mysterious loner named Tae Sik who runs a pawn shop.  His neighbor, a little girl named So Mi, often comes by and visits him when her flaky  mom is busy doing drugs or whatever.  Tae Sik obviously has some sort of dark past that causes him to behave without a lot of emotion so he acts as if the little girl is just short of a nuisance to him.  But something drastic happens to change all that and, following a Taxi-Driveresque head shaving scene, we get to see exactly who Tae Sik really is… and what he’s capable of.

Like many Korean films, this movie really knows how to make the audience feel something whether it is pity, anger, shock or relief. It has a lot of gorgeous cinematography juxtaposed against themes like black market organ harvesting and the mafia using children as “ants.”  It constantly barrages the viewer with conflicting images of beauty and ugliness over and over.  There is also some pretty thought-provoking dialogue so if you can stand subtitles, I definitely suggest keeping them on.

The acting is mostly believable, especially from the little girl Kim Sae-Ron. You can’t help but feel sorry for her character because her mom’s so screwed up and at one point she gives this speech that is so moving it harkens back to Paikea’s tear-jerking monologue from Whale Rider.

But let’s not forget the fact that this movie is, at its core, an action flick and a thriller. There are numerous fight scenes and some interesting twists that make this film pretty interesting to watch. I’m not going to discuss the action any further because that would venture into spoiler territory.  I’m just going to say that I really enjoyed this film.  It kept me glued from beginning to end so I’m giving it a firm B+

The Man From Nowhere Trailer

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