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South Korea, 2004 (MIFF 2004, DOA New Crime Cinema)

Director: Bong Joon-ho

Memories of Murder (Sarineui Chueok) South Korea

One of South Korea's box-office smashes of 2003, Memories of Murder is the latest film from acclaimed director Bong Joon-ho, who dazzled MIFF audiences in 2001 with Barking Dogs Never Bite. Part atmospheric thriller, part low-key comedy, part detective story, part dissection of South Korea itself, Memories of Murder is set around the hunt for the country's first known serial killer.

The tone of the film is set during the opening scene, an investigation into the first grisly murder. A body has been discovered in a ditch beside an open field and the police arrive to investigate. Instead of conducting themselves in an orderly manner, the bungling cops mishandle the crime scene and destroy the evidence. When two murders follow soon after, the police become desperate and attempt to extort a confession from the town's simpleton'they even toy with the idea of using a shaman to apprehend the culprit! Not to be defeated, a 'cool' detective is recruited from Seoul to solve the crimes. By turns gripping and darkly humorous, Memories of Murder never fails to entertain, and reaffirms South Korea's reputation for producing some of the world's most genre-defying cinema.

D Bong Joon-ho P Kim Moo-ryung S Bong Joon-ho, Shim Sung Bo WS CJ Entertainment L Korean w/English subtitles TD 35mm/Col/2003/127mins

Bong Joon-ho was born in Seoul, South Korea in 1969. Films include: Incoherent (1996, short), Barking Dogs Never Bite (MIFF 2001).

See also...


Screened in Director's Fortnight, this film is, at once, a revelation (one of the few at Cannes this year) and a reaffirmation of filmmaker Bong Joon-ho's ability to mould humour, socio-political ... More »


“Vertigo-style flashback and shocking revelations elevate the film beyond mere thriller into high-octane Almodovar territory.” - Screen International ... One of South Korea's most exciting ... More »


An accomplished debut feature from South Korean director Bong Joon-ho. this twisted social comedy works as a dry and amusing human-interest cackle. An indolent university lecturer, scheming to bribe ... More »


"Beautifully directed, unsentimental and darkly funny." - Time Out London ... Bong Joon-ho (Mother, MIFF 2009; The Host, MIFF 2006), a true creative and commercial giant of South Korean cinema, made ... More »


Breaking News (Dai Sigin) Hong KongThe latest hard-boiled crime drama from acclaimed Hong Kong filmmaker Johnnie To (P.T.U., MIFF 2003) wowed audiences in its Official Selection slot at Cannes this ... More »


Infernal Affairs II (Wu jian dao II) Hong KongInfernal Affairs was a sell-out smash at last year's Festival, thrilling audiences with its hard-boiled action sequences, superb acting and intricate ... More »

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