I kept wondering throughout "Tunnel 3D" whether this film was inspired by some sort of real life incident. It's not that the movie is realistic in any way, don't get me wrong. It's just that the characters keep going on about how they need to make the the tunnel a monument to remember something and I'm just thinking, remember what? Was there some major tunnel related accident in South Korea in recent years that I hadn't heard about?
Because there certainly wasn't anything memorable about this movie. You know how teenagers are dumb and stupid, especially rich ones? Well of course you do you've probably seen at least one horror movie in your life. "Tunnel 3D" is exactly the same as any of those other movies. Its teenagers are all creepy leering jerks who inevitably get stuck in the tunnel and start dying one by one. It doesn't really matter why. I mean it does matter why because like all horror movies "Tunnel 3D" is working up to the point of solving the mystery but the revelation isn't a particularly impressive one.
In many ways it doesn't even make that much sense. You'd think the heir to a mining company would know stuff about tunnels beyond the fact that they're that place where you dig stuff up to make products for the modern consumer economy. Then again his dad isn't much better. I'd think it would be pretty bad for public relations to shut down a rescue operation for financial reasons. And why would a compensation claim increase if the survivors were alive anyway?
So, never mind the internal logic. Any potential interesting story here about sleazy practices in the mining industry are immediately undone by the goofy, unconvincing tone "Tunnel 3D" takes toward actually explaining any of that stuff. That leaves a horror movie about teenagers trapped in a tunnel. And so what if the metaphor doesn't make any sense, if the movie's scary, that's enough, right?
Unfortunately "Tunnel 3D" instead decides to be about as generic as possible in horror movie terms. There's a few unimpressive fantastical sequences, but nothing genuinely scary. I watched in 2D, but I can't imagine the 3D effects would have been much to write home about either. I don't think I felt any kind of legitimate fear at any point. It was just, uh-huh, that's nice, let's get on with it, I've already figured out most of this plot let's get to the few parts I haven't.
It's all just so incredibly perfunctory- like director Park Gyoo-taek was determined to get all the most generic parts of the horror movie in here because those tropes are what make up the backbone of the genre. Well they don't. Decent metaphors are what matter to people like me, and those are completely fumbled here. Everybody else would be satisfied with having parts of the movie that are actually scary, and those too are almost totally in absence. "Tunnel 3D" is just a huge mess, and I frankly can't imagine why anyone would want to watch it.
This review was written by William Schwartz as a part of HanCinema's PiFan (Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival) coverage.
Staff writer. Has been writing articles for HanCinema since 2012, having lived in South Korea since 2011. Started out in Gyeongju, then to Daegu, then to Ansan, then to Yeongju, then to Seoul, lived on the road for HanCinema's travel diaries series in the summer of 2016, and is currently settled in Anyang. Has good tips for utilizing South Korea's public bus system. William Schwartz can be contacted via firstname.lastname@example.org.
"[HanCinema's Film Review] "Tunnel 3D""
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