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'Kidnappers' Needs Education to Be Funny

2006/11/02 | Permalink | Source

By Kang Seung-woo
Staff Reporter

The first and most important mission of comedy movies is to see that the audience bursts into laughter.

But it seems that local directors are often obsessed with the idea that they should also include a new perspective or message at the end of their comedy films.

If their attempt is unsuccessful, however, viewers can get easily lost in between hilariousness and seriousness and the movie can flop.

The new film " Chanhokhan Chulgun" ("A Cruel Attendance") seems to be a victim of such an obsession.

In the first half, the film succeeds in cracking hilarious jokes from humorous situations, but the remainder of the film bores the audience with the theme of "the importance of family".

The film, directed by Kim Tae-yoon, is centered on the irony of a kidnapper's daughter being kidnapped.

The main character is Tong-chul (played by Kim Soo-ro), who finds himself in trouble after his failed stock investment, he loses a lot of money and he is fired from his company.

He makes every effort to return to a normal life with his family, but things are already worse than he can manage.

Tong-chul, along with hapless Man-ho (Lee Seon-gyeon), impulsively kidnaps a high school girl, Tae-hee (Ko Eun-ah).

However, Tae-hee and her father (Oh Kwang-rok) cause problems for the clumsy kidnappers. And, on the same day they kidnap the girl, Tong-chul's daughter is also kidnapped.

Unlike the half-baked kidnappers, the seemingly professional other kidnapper takes advantage of Tong-chul's poor situation in that he can not call the police, throwing him into a predicament.

The ironic situation produces many hilarious moments thanks to the veteran actors.

Kim Soo-ro's comic abilities, which he demonstrated in his previous works "A Bold Family", "S Diary" and "Vampire Cop Ricky", also work in this film.

The film takes an unexpected turn after the first half and sends the audience in a totally different direction. What awaits them is a tragic story with a predictable and instructive lesson.

In the latter parts, the film emphasizes the importance of family.

However, the sudden change creates a huge gap in the story. The audience may have a difficult time linking the parts together and may end up thinking that the movie should have focused more on its first and most important mission.

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