The Front Line (2012)

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AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.


Movie Info

Toward the end of the Korean War, an uneasy ceasefire is ordered, but out on the Eastern front line of the Aerok Hills, in an expanse of land called the Aero.K, fierce fighting continues. A race to capture this strategic point to determine a new border between the two Koreas is the ultimate prize. At the Eastern border stands the "Alligator Company," known to be the best soliders on the front line. They are the only unit to have survived the worst battle of the war at Pohang. When a South Korean … More

Rating: Unrated
Genre: Drama
Directed By: ,
Written By: Park Sang-Yeon
In Theaters:
On DVD: May 8, 2012
Runtime:
Well Go USA - Official Site

Cast


as Kang Eunpyo

as Kim Suhyeok

as Shin Ilyeong

as Lee Sangik

as O Giyeong

as Yang Hyosam

as Nam Seongsik

as Hyun Jeongyun

as Cha Taegyeong

as Hwang Seonchil

as Choi Captain

as Regimental Commander

as North Korean Army Ba...

as Pohang Company Comma...

as O Giyeong

as Cha Taegyeong

as Choi Captain

as Kang Eunpyo
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for The Front Line

All Critics (15) | Top Critics (9)

We can be grateful that a Jang Hun comes along now and then to inscribe a human record.

Full Review… | June 19, 2013
The New Republic
Top Critic

A potent anti-war movie with breathtaking battle sequences.

Full Review… | January 20, 2012
New York Post
Top Critic

A war movie not quite worth engaging.

Full Review… | January 19, 2012
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

A movie that reserves its final sickening wallop for a grueling half-hour that leaves you as emotionally battered as the soldiers are forced to return to hell for one last senseless round.

Full Review… | January 19, 2012
New York Times
Top Critic

While its tone and humanity offset the futility of each side's need for one crucial hill, much of this intense, honorable film is too drawn-out.

Full Review… | January 19, 2012
New York Daily News
Top Critic

The action in The Front Line is bloody and tense, but the movie also reduces war to its simplest terms...

Full Review… | January 19, 2012
AV Club
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Front Line

In "The Front Line," the good news for Eun-pyo(Ha-kyun Shin) is that he will no longer have to suffer through the endless peace talks. The bad news is he is being shipped to Aerok Hill, which is a key battleground for where the boundaries will be set, to investigate a possible spy. Currently, the hill is being defended by a bunch of teenagers, with Yang(Chang-Seok Ko) being the only veteran from a previous war. At least, Eun-pyo gets reunited with Soo-hyeok(Soo Go), who he feared dead.

Some times it may seem like there have already been too many war is futile movies but then with the latest warmongering, it becomes perfectly clear again we can never have too many. One of the more recent, "The Front Line," which as uneven and episodic as it is, still has quite a few neat touches like the box and a massive dose of irony in its final act. Set in the final days of the Korean War, the movie is also about the last chances for any kind of reconciliation for the country, as the final barriers are about to go up.(Since this is told from a Korean point of view, I wanted to see what they called this war there but according to Wikipedia, it depends on who you ask. Oh well.) Even though the South are the protagonists, the movie does not denigrate the North as villains, either.

Harlequin68
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

½

When it comes to war films I surprisingly covered more war films that take place in other continents than my own. My reason behind this is after years of learning American history in classes and free time I find it more interesting learning the history of other continents. Thus which is why I was drawn to the Korean war drama Go-ji-jeon (The Front Line in English) while not outstanding, a good war drama.

The Front Line (or Go-ji-jeon in Korean) is a drama centered on the Korean War's final battle that will determine the border between north and south. The film plot main issue is finding its footing in what story to tell. It takes a while (around 1/3 of the running time to be more specific) for it get to the standstill battle over Aerok Hill and finally explore the soldiers mentality on the war and personal feeling knowing they could kill the enemy they're communicating with. It is exactly here at Aerok Hill when the film becomes formulaic almost crossing the line of being repetitive. At Aerok Hill we get an attack to obtain the hill, chat between the soldiers, looking in a secret box and sending supplies to whoever opens it. What makes the repetition worth enduring is what I said earlier is the human exploration of war. Like if soldiers should keep fighting even in a non advancing standstill? Will the enemy be more sympathetic taking your life if they know you better? The other welcome addition is a subplot involving a sniper. The sniper subplot won't provide as much action as one might expect instead providing more the dramatic content than anything else.

Director Hun Jang and writer Park Sand-Yeon do a decent job telling a story. They won't be applauded by their storytelling abilities, but will be respected for presenting both sides of the conflict without demonising or undermining the other. The acting is solid as a whole with no standout of any kind. The battle scenes were badly staged. Mostly the troops run up or down a hill, shooting as they go. To get some idea of the unreality of it all: at one point the SK troops lose the hill and retreat in disorder...but when we meet them next (only minutes later)they are all sitting around without their weapons chatting in a camp.

The Front Line is held back from its own formula from being great, but is a film that put the soldiers first over spectacles. It won't be the film one might expect as first glance though they might just find something they liked just as much.

Cinema-Maniac
Caesar Mendez

Super Reviewer

½

"The Front Line" is a Korean war movie that is a bit reminiscent of the movie "Taegukgi", with all the breathtaking sequences included. The only difference is that there is more doses of humanity in this movie. The characters from both the North and the South, are shown to have a huge desire for peace and a common hatred for the never-ending war. The ability of the director Hun Jang and the screenwriter Park Sang-Yeon to show the humanity of both sides without having to demonise the North is simply stunning.

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