On the Beach at Night Alone (Bamui haebyun-eoseo honja) (2017)

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Critic Consensus: On the Beach at Night Alone finds writer-director Sang-soo Hong working in a more personal vein -- without losing the singular sensibilities that have informed much of his acclaimed earlier work.

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A foreign city. The actress Younghee, stressed by a relationship with a married man in Korea, has given up everything, as the least courtesy she can show her sincere heart. He has said he'll join her, but she mistrusts him. She eats at an acquaintance's home and goes to a sea. She asks her friend, whom she thinks does not understand: "Is he missing me now, like I miss him??" Gangneung, Korea. A few old friends. Things are awkward, they drink, and she decides to startle them. She acts aloof, then cruel, but they like it. Left alone, Younghee goes to the beach, where things inside her heart manifest themselves, then fade like mist. How important is love in one's life? Younghee wants to know.

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Critic Reviews for On the Beach at Night Alone (Bamui haebyun-eoseo honja)

All Critics (41) | Top Critics (11)

Hong [Sang-soo's] work can frustrate, but his observant cinema can also be revelatory, a reason he has such a strong international following.

Dec 4, 2017 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

It's more than worth seeing for Kim's exposed nerve endings alone, and also for the way in which Hong's typically playful sensibility seems to tilt at times into a surreal, menacing strangeness.

Nov 20, 2017 | Full Review…

On the Beach at Night Alone" exemplifies all of the worst tendencies of Hong's films without many of his better qualities.

Nov 17, 2017 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

"On the Beach" feels more raw and personal than some of Mr. Hong's other work.

Nov 16, 2017 | Full Review…

It's a raw, open wound of a movie, in its hunkered-down way, and Hong doesn't always seem to be wholly comfortable handling emotions that aren't strictly mediated by social niceties.

Nov 14, 2017 | Rating: B | Full Review…
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Top Critic

Hong examines the turmoil of human interaction - the pain of honesty as well as the frustration of inexpressiveness.

Nov 13, 2017 | Full Review…

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