Apr 172011
Authors: Jason Berlinberg

“I Saw the Devil” delivers shockingly violent action sequences bound together in a Korean Art House film that walks a fine line between pointless torture and gripping revenge thriller.

The movie stars Min-Sik Choi as a ruthless psychopath who commits obscene serial murders on defenseless victims. Unfortunately for him, his latest victim is the fiancé of Soo-Hyun (Byung-Hun Lee), a police agent within the South Korean intelligence agency.

Soo-Hyun vows to take revenge on his fiancé’s killer, tracking down all the possible suspects and making the killer pay no matter what the cost.

As a caveat, this movie is not for those with a weak stomach; it reaches depths of violence and torture that are reminiscent of the “Saw” franchise.

That being said, “I Saw the Devil” establishes an intriguing story beyond the violence that is set around an engaging cat-and-mouse thriller. It boasts the uncommon ability of having a dynamic storyline to keep the audience guessing as its tale unravels.

The film is very similar to 2007’s best picture winner “No Country for Old Men” in that it portrays a conflict between pure good and unfathomable evil.  Through this struggle, “I Saw the Devil” displays how a man can transform into the very monster he is hunting.

But when comparing these two films, “No Country for Old Men” provides a more fluid script, better-rounded characters and stronger lasting appeal.  If you haven’t seen it yet, shame on you.  

Be sure to check out both of them, as it looks like mainstream movies are soon to be in their annual spring slump.

You can see “I Saw the Devil” and other great independent and foreign films at the Lyric Cinema Café located on Mountain Avenue in Old Town.

Movie reviewer Jason Berlinberg can be reached at verve@collegian.com and can be followed on Twitter at twitter.com/jasonberlinberg.

 Posted by at 3:13 pm

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