Oldboy is an adaptation of the manga by Garon Tsuchiya and Nobuaki Minegishi of the same name, although there are many different parts of the film – including the latter part of the story. Winning the Grand Prix at the 2004 Cannes Film Festival, Oldboy is said to be one of the best Korean films of all time. Oldboy (2003) is actually the second part of Park Chan-Wook’s Vengeance trilogy after Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance (2002) and before Lady Vengeance (2005). But actually the trilogy is not related other than a similar theme that is revenge. Chan-wook is also known as the director of I’m A Cyborg But That’s Okay and Thirst who took over in the competition to win the Golden Palm at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival.
Fifteen years Oh Dae-su (Choi Min-sik) was locked in a mysterious room. During those 15 years, he always wondered who put him in the place and on what basis. One day, he was simply put in a suitcase and released on a roof of a building. Knowing that he was now a fugitive for being accused of killing his wife, how sad he was when he learned that his daughter had also been adopted abroad. Together with a sushi restaurant waiter he just met, Mi-do (Kang Hye-jeong), he tries to solve the mystery of his containment. When he finally met the kidnapper, Lee Woo-jin (Yu Ji-tae), he was given 5 days to answer the secret in return for Woo-jin to kill himself. If Dae-su fails, Mi-do will be killed.
Chan-Wook is able to insert elements of laughter without giving away the mood of the film. There is a bit of Games Online dan Offline contradiction given by Chan-Wook through the character of Dae-Su who is not only ferocious when beating his enemies, but on the other hand looks a little plain, innocent and silly. The protagonist’s character is central to this story, and his acting is able to arouse sympathy for the audience. The maturity of his character is also so pronounced, how Dae-Su is able to transform from a middle-aged man who looks stupid and innocent into a man full of revenge.
Lee Woo-Jin’s villain character, played by Yoo Ji-Tae, is the dream villain type of person: handsome, flamboyant and rich in wealth. If we think the character is one-dimensional, towards the end of the film will be another emotion that the audience has never thought. Mi-do (Kang Hye-Jung) is loveable and looks innocent. The characters are so easy for the audience to like, not the type of female character that is just a sweetener for an action film.
Choi Min-sik also played in the movie I Saw The Devil (2010) which was also on the theme of revenge. Oldboy or Oldeuboi reminds us a bit of the atmosphere of I Saw The Devil. In the sadistic matters of the scene, I Saw The Devil is still a little more gore, but when talking about the themes and issues raised, it seems Oldboy is far ahead. Oldboy is not a film for everyone, but it is not just an action film, but also offers a thrilling and thrilling drama-thriller. The action portion in this film is not too dominant, but the fight scene between Dae-Su and Mr. Park is one of the best fight scenes.
Oldboy’s main strength lies in its cool twist plot. How Chan-Wook is able to well and neatly uncover all the mysteries of Oldboy. Chan-Wook was not in a hurry to show the clues that became the basis of the Oldboy story, and all the instructions only actually made the audience more curious.
Oldboy is a drama-thriller with captivating visuals and sad music scoring that will make all emotions blend into one. The Oldboy twist is probably one of the best twist we’ve ever watched, the ending of this film is the climax of one of the most brilliant films.