Missing on DVD

Monday, 31 January 2011 09:45

A young film director and an aspiring, sexy actress called Hyun-ah get peckish on a road trip, and stop off for some tasty chicken soup at a guest house. Unfortunately for them, their host is demented, and consequently the director ends up garrotted and gets a spade through his head, and the lady is drugged with chloroform and put through a number of demeaning, misogynistic rituals that probably will not end well for her.

Hyun-ah (Jeon Se-Hong) realises that her time left on this Earth will be short unless she can escape, but – caged like a dog - that seems impossible. Meanwhile, her sister Hyun-jung (Choo Ja-Hyun) senses something is amiss and starts pestering the disinterested local police and sniffing about for clues on her own. Unhinged kidnapper Pan-gon (Moon Sung-Keun) is considered harmless and his unspeakable acts continue under their noses.

Missing - out on DVD nowIt is a struggle to find anything positive to say about this Korean horror movie. For starters, though it claims to be based loosely on real events, this fact does nothing to prevent the story feeling like a poorly reheated version of countless other ‘torture porn’ films. The horror genre is awash with them right now, and “Missing” does absolutely nothing to raise its game enough to stand out (or even remotely match the better ones).

The direction by Sung-Hong Kim is insipid and only manages to build up some tension in the final 15-20 minutes, by which time the audience’s good will has most likely left the building.

The characterisation is typically pitched between bland and dull, and you really will not care who lives and who dies. Yes, there are a few very gory death scenes, but for the most part the action, such that it is, exhibits a distinct lack of inventiveness or flair. The plot does have one or two mild twists, but otherwise we are taken from the humdrum start to the predictable conclusion in a very straight line.

The DVD has a couple of “Missing” trailers, plus a trailer gallery for other Cine Asia releases. It seems poetic that the ‘special’ features are on a par with the quality of the movie itself. I strongly advise that anyone reading this review seeks out one of those other releases, rather than this lame effort!

“Missing” (2009) is out now, courtesy of Cine Asia. The main feature has a running time of 99 minutes approx, carries an ‘18’ certificate and the DVD retails for £15.99, or less from www.culttvstore.com

Last modified on Thursday, 10 May 2012 16:37

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