HanCinema

HanCinema is not a Tomatometer-approved publication. Reviews from this publication only count toward the Tomatometer® when written by the following Tomatometer-approved critic(s): Panos Kotzathanasis, William Schwartz
Rating Title/Year Author
1987: When the Day Comes (2017) William Schwartz Throughout 1987: When the Day Comes we mostly see Investigator Park through the eyes of his victims- as a crazed psychopath who cannot be stopped and cannot be negotiated with...a fitting metaphor for the South Korean dictatorship as a whole. EDIT
Posted Feb 18, 2021
A Werewolf Boy (2012) William Schwartz In excellent subversive faction, it's the feral boy that really connects with the viewer on screen. EDIT
Posted Feb 18, 2021
Space Sweepers (2021) William Schwartz I was caught off guard by the sheer quantity of badly paced infodumping...there is yet more exposition and backstory well into the second half, every single time dragging the narrative to a crawl. EDIT
Posted Feb 18, 2021
A Special Lady (Mi-ok) (2017) William Schwartz There's a shocking failure to communicate that drives almost all of the conflict in A Special Lady to the point that I was rooting for Sang-hoon in spite of his clearly being presented as a jerk. EDIT
Posted Jan 11, 2021
A Dog's Courage (2019) William Schwartz What starts out as a story of survival turns into an odyssey, at the clear expense of a well defined moral message. EDIT
Posted Jan 11, 2021
The Call (2020) William Schwartz The Call is a movie that thrives on its effective use of mysterious atmosphere. Director Lee Chung-hyun makes that much clear from the earliest scenes, which contrast a modern-day social drama with a past day freak show. EDIT
Posted Jan 11, 2021
Five Marines (1961) Panos Kotzathanasis Strange war film, since it is, by no means, anti-war, but also does not go very far in its paeans for the army, particularly through the intense melodramatic aspect that highlights the fact that even heroes die. EDIT
Posted Jan 5, 2021
The Woman Who Ran (2020) Panos Kotzathanasis Hong Sang-soo directs a movie that, once more, focuses on the details of everyday life, even including the mundanity that is associated with the lives of the "unremarkable" EDIT
Posted Dec 20, 2020
Me and Me (2020) Panos Kotzathanasis Although Jung Jin-young did not seem particularly interested in communicating with his audience, "Me and Me" emerges as a captivating movie, particularly for those who are willing to leave their logic behind. EDIT
Posted Dec 15, 2020
BLACKPINK: Light Up the Sky (2020) William Schwartz BLACKPINK changes languages from English to Korean to Thai seemingly at random. But as I saw more of these discussions, I could detect a more consistent rhythm in the way they discourse, synchronizing their thoughts to one another. EDIT
Posted Nov 20, 2020
Fukuoka (2019) William Schwartz Zhang Lu's characters persist in the dreamlike world that can only really be described as existing in a foreign country. EDIT
Posted Nov 20, 2020
The Swordsman (2020) William Schwartz Writer/director Choi Jae-hoon has crafted a surprisingly ruminative and moody action flick about power and politics. EDIT
Posted Nov 20, 2020
An Old Lady (0000) William Schwartz More than being about sexual assault and elder abuse as hot button issues, An Old Lady is a character study. EDIT
Posted Oct 30, 2020
Between The Seasons (2018) William Schwartz Between the Seasons is a superb exposition of existential crisis as its characters ask themselves who they are, and what they want, and never really coming up with a satisfying answer. EDIT
Posted Oct 30, 2020
Deliver Us From Evil (2020) William Schwartz Crisp and beautiful as the movie's visuals are, writer/director Hong Won-chan never loses sight of the fact that every scene of this movie represents a tragic, senseless loss of human life. EDIT
Posted Oct 30, 2020
() Panos Kotzathanasis From the naivety and extreme lack of courage the protagonists occasionally show, to the mocking of the tactics of the court, the way gossip works and the beliefs of the common people of the era all provide moments of intense humor EDIT
Posted Oct 25, 2020
Beauty Water (2020) Panos Kotzathanasis The concept of beauty and how has come to dominate the modern world and particularly the contemporary Korean society is a very serious issue, and "Beauty Water" presents one of the most realistic depictions of its consequences EDIT
Posted Oct 25, 2020
Steel Rain (2017) William Schwartz While consistently excellent in individual sections, the ambiguous genre mix of Steel Rain does a lot to dilute the impact. EDIT
Posted Oct 1, 2020
Nobody's Daughter Haewon (2013) William Schwartz Excellent self-critical stuff, the kind of movie a person could use to remind themselves that breaking up with an ex-lover was probably the smartest possible move. EDIT
Posted Oct 1, 2020
#Alive (2020) William Schwartz #ALIVE plays its setting too safe, and while the end product is certainly watchable, it's ultimately nothing special. EDIT
Posted Sep 30, 2020
Train to Busan Presents: Peninsula (2020) Panos Kotzathanasis "Peninsula" is a film that aims to entertain and to sell tickets, and in that regard, it is easy to say that it succeeds to the fullest. In terms of context, though, not so much. EDIT
Posted Sep 27, 2020
The Wrath (2018) Panos Kotzathanasis "The Wrath" seems to include all the clichés and the faults of the category, but through its production values and the overall atmosphere, emerges as a true crowd-pleaser, a film that will satisfy all fans of horror movies. EDIT
Posted Aug 11, 2020
The Dude in Me (2017) Panos Kotzathanasis "The Dude in Me" is a very entertaining mainstream film that manages to retain its audience's interest for the whole of its duration through its rather interesting combination of genres. EDIT
Posted Aug 11, 2020
Swallowtail Butterfly (1996) Panos Kotzathanasis Swallowtail Butterfly is a beautiful film that suffers much from its extended duration and the fact that Iwai tried to include many more elements than he actually could. EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
Bewitching Attraction (2006) Panos Kotzathanasis Moon So-ri's sexy to the point of sultry presence, with her high heels, tight and occasionally see-through outfits, long nails, glasses/no glasses and occasional nudity becomes the focal point of both the cinematography and the narrative. EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
Time to Hunt (2020) Panos Kotzathanasis the aforementioned combination results into a film that looks like something between "The Terminator" and "A Bittersweet Life", and is the element that allows the viewer to forget how generic the main story is. EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
Man of Men (2019) Panos Kotzathanasis "Man of Men" does not avoid clichés, not at all actually. At the same time, however, Yong Soo has managed to work over them and to present a rather enjoyable film, particularly regarding its comedic part. EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
() Panos Kotzathanasis "Madame Freedom", despite its highly didactic tone, intense melodrama, and infuriating messages (at least for the viewer of today), is a very entertaining and well-shot film, which truly deserved the title "classic". EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
Piagol (1955) Panos Kotzathanasis "Piagol" is a very interesting film, equally competent in its direction, acting and production values, which demands from the viewer, though, to overcome its evident propagandistic purposes in order to fully appreciate it. EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
A Hometown in Heart (1949) Panos Kotzathanasis Yun Yong-gyu directs a genuine melodrama, about a boy whose life is in shambles, and every ray of hope seems to clash with his harsh reality, repeatedly EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
Beasts Clawing at Straws (2020) Panos Kotzathanasis "Beasts Clawing at Straws" features a great story, and equal cinematic implementation in one of the most entertaining and well shot movies of the year. EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
Nam-mae-wui Yeo-reum-bam (2019) Panos Kotzathanasis "Moving On" is a great indie family drama, particularly because it manages to work on so many levels and to present themes that are easy to relate to, in a global scale. EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
Youngju (2018) Panos Kotzathanasis "Young-ju" is hyperbolic and unrealistic, but at the same time captivating and entertaining, as it returns the melodrama to its original roots. EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
Too Far to Go (1979) Panos Kotzathanasis "Don't Go Too Far" is easy to watch, particularly for those who also enjoy stage plays, while the thriller elements give it the necessary cinematic elements. Furthermore, at 77 minutes it does not outstay its welcome EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
() Panos Kotzathanasis Kang Je-gyu did not have yet the command of the medium he presented in his next, blockbuster films, but his knack for popular cinema is evidently even here. The film is not exactly bad, but it could have been much better EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
Height of the Wave (2019) Panos Kotzathanasis The rather captivating unfolding of these three axes is a testament to the directorial effort of Park, who also uses the story to present a number of comments regarding human nature, particularly as it is dictated in the life in the islands EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
The 12th Suspect (2019) Panos Kotzathanasis "The 12th Suspect" is an interesting film that manages to make some very important comments, although the duality of its narrative somewhat faults its overall quality. EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
The Divine Fury (2019) Panos Kotzathanasis "The Divine Fury" is more impressive than substantial, but Kim Joo-hwan has managed to combine all those elements in a package that somewhat works, at least in terms of entertainment. EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
() Panos Kotzathanasis "Road" is a great film that manages to combine an interesting story with social comments, a rather personal approach and impressive visuals. EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
Drunk on Women and Poetry (2002) Panos Kotzathanasis Im Kwon-taek's narrative approach focuses on detail, regarding both the actual story and the overall visuals, with Jeon Il-seong's cinematography matching the actual paintings of Seung-up in beauty, without neglecting realism EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
Surrogate Woman (1987) Panos Kotzathanasis "The Surrogate Woman" is as meaningful as it is entertaining, and a great sample of the realistic Joseon drama, filled with social commentary. EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
() Panos Kotzathanasis "Jagko" is one of the "easiest" films of Im Kwon-taek, at least to the contemporary eye, since the Korean veteran has managed to combine meaningful commentary and entertainment in the best fashion. EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
Bad Police (2019) Panos Kotzathanasis The Dawning Rage could have been a much better film if Lee Jeong-beom had kept it simpler and had just focus on the dynamics of the relationship of the two protagonists Unfortunately, he decided to follow an unnecessary complex path EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2020
() William Schwartz The dull expository sequences of the film rather understate just how destroyed Mi-ra's world is and how that's warped her sense of self. EDIT
Posted Jul 9, 2020
The President's Last Bang (2005) William Schwartz Scenes of grotesque violence are handled oddly lackadaisically, with the occasional low-ranking character meekly suggesting that maybe this isn't such a good idea before reluctantly agreeing to follow orders anyway. EDIT
Posted Jul 9, 2020
Bori (2018) William Schwartz Stripped of sensational elements, Bori's own message is simply that the deaf lifestyle is different, containing remarkable nuance. EDIT
Posted Jul 9, 2020
() William Schwartz It is in this moment, more than any other, that we are reminded that Yong-gi is thoroughly a clown. EDIT
Posted Mar 4, 2020
For Horowitz (2006) William Schwartz It's the budding emotional relationship that changes Ji-soo's attitude rather than Kyeong-min's abilities. Where My Piano gets surprising is its general take on reality. EDIT
Posted Mar 4, 2020
Wedding Dress (2010) William Schwartz Wedding Dress is a story about making yourself happy to make other people happy. EDIT
Posted Mar 4, 2020
() William Schwartz While The Abductress isn't quite pornography I frequently felt while watching this movie like an explicitly soft-core take might have been an improvement EDIT
Posted Feb 28, 2020