Thursday, December 02, 2010

Gratuitous Lee Byung-hun


Well this was a pleasant surprise! I clicked on this link over at BD about a Korean horror film called I Saw the Devil which I remember hearing good stuff about at some vaguely remembered point in the past. The film's apparently going to play at Sundance, and BD has the first batch of hi-res images from it. Anyway I take note of the lead guy, who is attractive. Taking note means, by the way, spending an hour or so looking up pictures of him and falling in lust.

As the title of this post says his name's Byung-hun Lee and he might be familiar to you as having played Storm Shadow in the G.I. Joe movie - and if you can remember anything about that movie then I'll grant you three wishes, but now that I spent all this time ogling this dude my memory of his shirtless fight scene has been mostly recovered.

He was also in Park Chan-wook's third of Three.... Extremes called "Cut" which I also only vaguely recall - something about somebody strung up with piano wire to a piano, I think? That entire film lives and dies by Fruit Chan's awesome Bai Ling-starring "Dumplings" segment. Lee was also in Park's first major film JSA, which I haven't seen in ages either but recall liking very very much.

The director of this new flick of Lee's, Ji-woon Kim, made A Tale of Two Sisters in 2003, one of those Asian horror movies that got a lot of good attention (and got remade here in the US) back in that big wave of them at the start of the previous decade, but I've never seen it. And Kim and Lee have actually worked together before, in A Bittersweet Life and The Good, The Bad and the Weird, the latter which I recall also hearing good stuff about. Plus Lee looks really sexy and insane in it.

And finally, Lee was also in the 2008 cop-thriller I Come with the Rain, the existence of which I'm only familiar because Josh Hartnett took off his clothes in it a bunch and I dutifully documented back in the day. And they did a shoot together for Korean Vogue where I greet each picture with the refrain, "Why won't you kiiiiiiissssssssss?"

Alright, that's way more info then any of you were really looking for in this post, I'm guessing. What you want are the rest of the pictures. I can handle that. Man alive can I handle that!



HenryK said...

You are soooooo going to love "I saw the devil". I´ve been reading this blog now for a while and I think that it will be on you top 10 of the year for sure: original & violent ways to die, sexy actors, funny dialogues, a sick plot... In my opinion, the best Korean film since "Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance" (and there has been a lot of good staff in South Korea since them...)

Jason Adams said...

Ack I want it now! NOW. Still not sure when it'll play here in the US though, Magnolia seems to be sitting on it.

Any other SK recs HenryK? I've been lousy keeping up with their scene the past few years, save PCW's output of course.

HenryK said...

Well, I loved the usual: Bong Joon-ho´s "Mother", Sang-soo Hong´s everything ("Night and day" specially), "Poetry" by Chang-dong Lee, etc.. But none of them is a real discovery (they are the "important" exports of SK cinema along with PCW).

In this sense, "Breathless" by Ang Ik-June was a very small movie that it was specially good portraying violence, and "Crush and blush" by Kyoung-mi Lee is also a small and great black comedy-soap.

I have to say that I´m currently living in Barcelona and they´re not releasing a lot of SK cinema, so probably I´m missing some of the greatest movies of the last years!

PS: It is not Korean but from Japan, but I think that you´ll also enjoy Shion Sono´s "Cold Fish". It is a sick story from the guy that made "Suicide club" (not that I´m a huge fan of that, but this one is spectacular). Here´s the trailer:

billybil said...

Abs like that are ridiculous, aren't they?

Simon said...

Good god, you must watch GBW. And everything else he's in ever.