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Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance (Boksuneun naui geot) Reviews

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Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's all a little ultra-cool for me. Shakespeare was right. Revenge is a dish best served ice-cold, not cool.

Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune | Original Score: 2.5/4

September 8, 2005
Nick Schager

vainly attempts to imbue foulness with socio-political subtext

Full Review Source: | Original Score: 2/5

August 18, 2005
Manohla Dargis
New York Times
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There is so much talent on display in Park Chanwook's Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance, it is a drag that the film never rises to the level of its director's obvious ability.

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 2/5

August 18, 2005
Jeffrey M. Anderson
Combustible Celluloid

Even more brutal than Oldboy, but sadly less focused and with less intrigue

Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid

August 29, 2005
Felix Vasquez Jr.
Cinema Crazed

A disappointing, dull, and often tedious examination of different people seeking different forms of revenge...

Full Review Source: Cinema Crazed

April 29, 2009
Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Slightly more enjoyable than getting a kidney transplant.

Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews | Original Score: C

January 14, 2007
Gene Seymour
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Somehow you'd be more won over by his anti-revenge case if he didn't seem to be having such a good time making it.

Full Review Source: Newsday | Original Score: 2.5/4

August 25, 2005

The movie begins as a tragic tale of sacrifice and love... intense and understandably moving. It gets a little less interesting when it turns into a gore-fest.

Full Review Source: | Original Score: 3/5

September 30, 2005
Andrew Wright
The Stranger (Seattle, WA)

Park's worldview is grotty to such extremes that it becomes hard to recommend [this] in good conscience, no matter how virtuosic the delivery.

Full Review Source: The Stranger (Seattle, WA)

September 8, 2005
Ed Gonzalez
Slant Magazine

A daisy wheel of revenge-fueled gore speciously intercut with delusions of social commentary.

Full Review Source: Slant Magazine | Original Score: 1.5/4

February 14, 2005
Brendan Bernhard
L.A. Weekly
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Slowly degenerates into a gory revenge thriller that is never thrilling, but is often boring and frequently repulsive.

Full Review Source: L.A. Weekly

August 18, 2005
Harvey S. Karten

Poorly edited, though not as much gore as some say.

Full Review Source: Compuserve | Original Score: C+

August 13, 2005

There's no flow or rhythm, and sometimes it feels like scenes are missing.

| Original Score: 2.5/4

July 6, 2003
JoBlo's Movie Emporium

Two hours that didn't entertain much, thrill much or do much of anything...much.

Full Review Source: JoBlo's Movie Emporium | Original Score: 4/10

August 26, 2005
Shlomo Schwartzberg
Boxoffice Magazine

The end result is a forgettable movie, notable only for its copious gore and bloodletting.

Full Review Source: Boxoffice Magazine | Original Score: 2/5

May 22, 2005
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
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Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance is so badly told that it ends up dissecting a corruption that exudes from nowhere but itself.

Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly | Original Score: D

August 17, 2005
Andy Klein
Los Angeles CityBeat

Sporting one of the greatest titles ever, Park Chan-wook's 2002 thriller is similar to Oldboy in its subject matter but far plainer in its execution.

August 17, 2005
Frank Scheck
Hollywood Reporter
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This ultra-violent revenge thriller is far more notable for its baroque excesses than coherence or credibility.

August 23, 2005
G. Allen Johnson
San Francisco Chronicle
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So bloody, scatologically violent and consistently shocking, it seems to have no larger purpose than itself -- which is pretty grim.

Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle | Original Score: 1/4

August 26, 2005
Tom Keogh
Seattle Times
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Promises to be a stylish, resonant plunge into the dark waters of despair and revenge but ends up amusing itself with ostentatious shocks.

Full Review Source: Seattle Times | Original Score: 2/4

September 9, 2005
Geoff Andrew
Time Out
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February 9, 2006
Derek Elley
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April 15, 2009

May 28, 2003

July 8, 2003

AV Club
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September 26, 2005

Boston Phoenix
October 29, 2005

Sight and Sound
September 28, 2006

Sight and Sound
June 18, 2012
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