"The Man From Nowhere": An Asian Cinema Masterpiece
Action Packed Korean Drama At It's Best
Asian cinema has been a long time passion of mine and Korean films, in particular, have been especially interesting. Last year's highest grossing Korean film was directed by Lee Jeong-beom. The Man From Nowhere stars Won Bin and Kim Sae-ron, but it is the peculiar relationship between the protagonist, Cha Tae-sik, played by Won Bin, and the antagonist of this film, Ramrowan played by Thanayong Wongtrakul that steals the show. Granted, Kim Sae-ron's character, So-mi, is heartbreaking and will keep you at the edge of your seat until the very end, but there is something very intriguing about the relationship that develops between these two grown men that are on opposite sides of the circumstances that move the story along. Although it is Ramrowan's sole duty to torment Cha Tae-sik, there is a deep mutual admiration and even respect between the two. At any rate, the dramatic fighting scenes between these two steal the show.
Without giving away too much, I'll just say that Cha Tae-sik's character is especially moving. His back story is enough to justify his harsh actions, but, like all heroes, he has a conscience. His co-actress is adorable and renders a heartbreaking speech that will give you a lump in your throat. The many facets of this film make it a non-stop action film and definitely one to add to your collection. If you enjoy American films like The Professional this is a must have.
At the 2010 Korean Film Awards, The Man From Nowhere raked in the trophies and Won Bin won the prize for best actor. If you haven't experienced Asian films, I highly recommend this one. Asian films in general offer a change of pace from the overdone American film styles that seem to suck you in with their exaggerated effects, yet have little in the way of content. The excellent cinematography, haunting soundtrack, and gritty realism all make this film a winner.
This film is obviously in Korean with subtitles and that may be a deterrent to some film lovers. My opinion is this; a movie just won't seem right unless viewed the way it was intended to be viewed, and if you aren't fluent in Korean, subtitles are the next best thing. If you've never tried it before, please do. The experience will be rewarding and it just might open the door to a whole new world of films just waiting to be experienced.