Abandoned by his mother shortly after immigrating to the United States, Gon is raised by the mafia and grows up to become a cold-blooded hit-man. Though usually flawless in taking out his targets, Gon makes a terrible mistake of killing an innocent young girl. Swamped by feelings of regret, guilt and shame, Gon no longer wants to be a hit-man, but his boss gives him one last mission.
So Gon finds himselfin South Korea, the land of the mother that abandoned him, on the trail of his last target. But in bitter irony, that target is Mo Gyeong, the mother of the dead child. Mo Gyeong is a risk manager at an investment firm who now lives in a fog of despair, caring for her senile mother while reliant on alcohol and drugs to get by following the loss of her husband and daughter. She is oblivious to her involvement in a much larger conspiracy until a man approaches her, claiming to know the truth behind her daughter's death. Gon agonizes and faces a life or death choice ― to follow the order to kill his target or to risk his own life at the price of redemption for his past.
Cast & Credits
The story is nothing fancy, nor original. In fact it can easily fall under the category "a dime a dozen". It's your typical action flick, with lots of bullets, knives and fists flying around, tons of red paint and zero emotions. If anything, both male and female leads' attempts to cry make for a good reason to laugh. Jang Dong Gun-shi, please don't cry! Ever again! You'll only ruin your image. Stick to what you do best, you were kind of cool in some of the fight scenes.
I can't say too much without spoilers, but the main characters are just not convincing enough. Their motivations, choices and reactions don't feel right.
The dialogues bounce between English and Korean, even though I can't see why that would be a plus for the movie. It felt more like showing off than a way to give authenticity to the characters. Heck, at some point they even throw in a bit of Spanish for the "Wow!" effect. Too bad it had the opposite impact, at least for me. On the bright side, if you understand English and basic Korean, you can give the movie a try even with no subs. You don't really need them, no food for though that you might miss here.
I guess guys could like "Crying Man". And girls, provided they are bored or have no choice (because of the guys LOL). Watch if you are a fan of action movies or of Jang Dong Gun (this being his comeback after 2 years).
Don't watch if you don't like violence and blood splashing on your screen! If you are looking for a profound, meaningful story, if you like complex characters or if you were just tempted by the synopsis, don't waste your time!
Unfortunately, the film spent too much time focusing on the back story of these emotionally torn characters instead of hard core action. The hit man, Gon and the mother, Mo-Gyeong are in their own private anguish yet entwined because he decides to protect her. Defending her from his boss is when the action in the movie amps up. It just takes awhile to get there.
The depressed finality in Gon makes him more brutal. The fight sequences were graphic and the pools of blood extreme. Jang Dong-gun did a good job with Gon’s merciless demeanor while fighting. His resolve made him an invincible opponent. The director highlights this once when they cut away from an impending fight only to show the aftermath of his skills. I was impressed by the assumption that the result of the fight had a foregone conclusion.
There was a big array of gangsters in this film. I didn't particularly like the swearing tantrums of one of the bad guys because it seemed overly dramatic and silly. The menacing nature of another underling was better suited to the general tone of the gangsters. My favorite baddie was Choaz, an ex-associate of Gun's. They had the more entertaining interactions in the movie. It was a relationship I would have liked to have seen more of.
It was interesting to see the dialogue switch between Korean, English and some casual Spanish. However, the characters overall conversations were lacking. This film focused more on telling the story through facial expressions and actions than by using words. I couldn't help but think the director was trying to make it like his other film, The Man from Nowhere. It didn't play as well though.
There were some fast paced action scenes when they did play out. There was an impressive shootout scene, a slice and dice knife fight and a great cat and mouse sequence that reminded me of the Hollywood Die Hard films. Above all else, I would watch this movie for Jang Dong-gun’s action scenes. They were pretty amazing.