Oldboy - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Oldboy Reviews

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May 20, 2017
Poetry through violence and rawness, disturbing but beautiful
May 16, 2017
well-made film with a very different story. Also, it features one of the most shocking and disturbing twists. Not that i lose sleep over it or anything... but it bothers me enough to make me hesitate renting the other two parts in the trilogy despite the fact that i do like the film quite a bit.
Not for the faint-of-heart viewers, or relaxing night on the sofa, AT ALL. But i say pick a night that you dont mind being shocked and watch it....
May 13, 2017
An incredible opus of classical music & some of the most graphic & unforgettable images of violence. An brain shattering story of a man who is imprisoned unexplainably for 15 years then to be released.

The film begins to unravel the past of the prisoner & the man who held him there. But this film is not for the faint hearted.

A complex & rich plot that demands your attention but is a film that will leave you panting such a energy bomb.
May 13, 2017
Park Chan Wook's Oldboy is a powerful tale of revenge full of bloody violence and a remarkable screenplay.
½ May 13, 2017
what a cinematic experience, movies like this are the reason I love the movies in the first place, movies that make you believe in things otherwise you´ve never believed were posible.
with such an ambitious story told in such a great way, with unforgettable moments, this is a must watch,not only for people interested in foreign language movies, but for every single person.
May 7, 2017
The revenge film to end all revenge films. Park Chan-wook is a master filmmaker. He's consistently making unconventional action choices, moving beyond simple fight choreography and blocking.
May 2, 2017
A fantastic study of smooth cinematography.
½ April 26, 2017
Watched less than half of it. Wierd and really annoying. I really don't care who imprisoned him or why.
½ April 11, 2017
Oldboy is sublime, and easily the standout film for me in the Vengeance trilogy. This brilliance is reflected in its widespread popularity. Winning the Grand Prix at Cannes, this film is by far bigger than Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance and Lady Vengeance. It fully deserves its popularity. Chan-Wook here made a masterpiece, with a dark and intriguing story, complex characters, and nightmarish yet breathtaking visuals. It fulfils the potential on display in Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance.

The film is mysterious and immersive from the start. Oh Dae-su, a drunk businessman and a bad father - who misses his daughters 4th birthday party -, is imprisoned by an anonymous figure. He remains incarcerated for 15 years, meanwhile building himself physically and plotting his revenge. The disturbing imagery and intensity of this scene set us up perfectly for what follows. Suddenly, after 15 years, he is released, and from then on this becomes a film full of twists. Oh Dae-su, a man sexually deprived and tortured by fetishised female figures on the TV, meets the young and beautiful Mi-do, and they start a romantic and intimate relationship. He then discovers that an old schoolmate, Lee Woo-jin, has been behind his imprisonment all along, exacting his own revenge. Oh Dae-su medalled in Woo-jin's incestuous relationship with his sister, the revealing of which led to her suicide. We then receive one of the most shocking plot twists ever. Mi-do, who we see having intense and passionate sex with Oh Dae-su, is really his daughter. Woo-jin has manipulated their lives all along, a parallel of the media Oh Dae-su was manipulated by during his imprisonment. Woo-jin gets his revenge, which is enhanced by the grovelling Dae-su chopping out his tongue in a symbolic gesture whilst begging Woo-jin to keep Mi-do in the dark. This plot-twist, though arguably perverse and contrived, is treated with such delicacy and subtlety. In Star Wars, Darth Vader is obviously Luke's father, but here we have no idea which way this film is going, and when we find out it is gut-wrenching. Chan-Wook's poetic and lyrical style hypnotises us and whisks us along, disarming our critical faculties. It is a genius and unpredictable twist, playing on our support for Dae-su's and Mi-do's partnership. It can only really work because of Chan-Wook's success in developing fully fleshed-out, complicated, and likeable characters, enhanced by their strong performances. It's still exquisitely shot, but there is much more than just style to this film. Where Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance fails is in its attempts to make us care about the story, but Oldboy succeeds with aplomb. Our acceptance to dive in, and go on a dizzying ride with Oh Dae-su, is essential.

Though for some too emotionally manipulative, overly gory, and shock value oriented, if you are able to let yourself become absorbed in this film then it is incredibly rewarding. Chan-Wook's mature handling of the plot means that we are never alienated by the subversive plot and its sickening twists. It proves that Chan-Wook can make narratively sound cinema, without having to compromise his bold aestheticism. If you don't mind cinema with sex, blood, and taboo subject matter, then this unusual slice of brilliance is a must-see. It represents the height of Chan-Wook's artistry and is the pinnacle of quality in this trilogy. Despite Hollywood's best efforts, a film this unique could never be reproduced.
½ March 25, 2017
i can see where The Raid got the inspiration from.

but yeah this one has better cinematography and plot.

what a fascinating movie.
March 20, 2017
Twisted yet brutally brilliant tale of revenge. Essential viewing.
March 18, 2017
Watched it based on a friends recommendation, the starting was mind-blowing but I realized I have read the manga the movie is based on & I had hated the ending of the book, so my expectations were low but they had changed the ending in the movie, it was simply fantastic & brutal, the most hard-core revenge ending one can imagine. Awesome direction, script, score , camera work and casting. The acting by all the leading cast was superb. Watch it for an unorthodox story of revenge which took 15 years to be prepared and served.
March 15, 2017
Really really good thriller. What the hell was that ending though
½ March 8, 2017
Oldboy is best described as the ultimate tale of vengeance and is complimented by it's unapologetic violence. It keeps you hooked, just like it's main character through many clever plot twists and mind blowing sequences.
March 6, 2017
not for the faint of heart
March 1, 2017
Inspired by the manga manga, "Oldboy" impresses the West, as it deals with violence and revenge in a surprising way, showing that even the smallest acts have their weight. We see here the story of Oh Dae-su (Choi Min-sik), a man full of regrets and sins who one day is imprisoned for fifteen years in a room, and when he leaves, he wants revenge, it seems a simple script, Make no mistake, inside this revenge we have several layers, twists, intrigue, suspense, action and of course, a touch of black humor. The photograph of "Oldboy" is very beautiful, all the colors are very defined, Dae-su's room is dazzling and at the same time despairing, the city is lifeless, we have that neon touch in dark scenes, even the same Being present, is an extremely clean photograph, and the soundtrack, well, it is a spectacle to the part, with orchestral musics "Oldboy" is sensational, mixing the violence when orchestrating a beautiful song - as in mechanical orange (7I) - all The times that your theme music plays, you delight and serve perfectly as a counterpoint to what is being shown the screen, and the last technical aspect that I would like to comment, what a fabulous edition, my congratulations. Yoo Ji-tae has a sensational performance, it's that villain that makes us all hate him, that is, he fulfilled his role, Choi Min-sik impresses at times with his expression caricats and scandals, but he lacks a dramatic tone And Kang Hye-Jeong does not have a dramatic or humorous tone, but is beautiful and concentrates all the attention on screen, this is the film that consecrates the career of the great director - the most popular in Western culture - Park Chan-Wook. The film does not contain an explicit moral, quite the contrary, it completely attacks and distorts what we know about morality, and its final message is troubled, loaded with oriental manias, "Oldboy" behaves very well, even in his scenes galletas de Action your trail and beautiful photography. It's a worthwhile movie, and it's the perfect gateway to Korean cinema.
February 24, 2017
Definition of shocking thriller.
February 15, 2017
Laugh and the world laughs with you,
Weep and you weep alone
February 12, 2017
This film is certainly one of the strangest I've ever seen. It is unlike anything I've ever seen, so it's a bit difficult to review without any point of comparison. I am glad I saw it, but would not watch it again.
February 6, 2017
Amazing! What a plot twist!
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