The Berlin File (2013)
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Critic Reviews for The Berlin File
There is something sharp, exciting and more original tucked within "The Berlin File" - and it is in moments a sleek, crackling film - but it all feels somehow misshapen.
As soon as "The Berlin File" takes flight with its exhilarating action set pieces, memories of any muddles evaporate amid the tension and vivid engagement with settings, from courtyards to fields.
The Berlin File benefits from gritty surroundings that add a cold war realism to this otherwise confusing tale of conflicted loyalties and secret agendas.
The story feels fairly perfunctory - not to mention unnecessarily knotty - but the well-connected leads do their best to ground it.
[A] formulaic but solid Cold War-style spy thriller, with North Korea pinch-hitting for the Soviet Union.
Audience Reviews for The Berlin File
Ryoo Seung-wan pulls out the agents and crosses them in The Berlin File.
Running nearly 2 hours, there is more than enough to follow when it comes to the story. While the pacing of the film isn't necessarily fast, plot details come and go often enough to easily throw things into a bin of shredded paper. In short, the story requires attention to grasp, especially in the first half. Fortunately, things become clearer by the film's final act.
The action is nicely done with the highlight happening at the end. It is a good mixture of realism and stylization.
Jung-woo Ha, Suk-kyu Han, and Ryoo Seung-Bum share the screen as the three major leads. Gianna Jun, as eye catching as she is, ends up overshadowed by the other three.
The Berlin File agreeably fits into the action crime thriller genre and is therefore a recommendable Korean picture.
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