Oldboy

The 2003 movie Oldboy is the second in a trilogy known as The Vengeance Trilogy. While not my favorite of all three movies it is probably the most well know. This is the story of Oh Dae-Su, who is imprisoned in a hotel room for 15 years and then released with no explanation as to why he was confined and released. When he is released falls for a young chef, but then must learn who his captor is and figure out why he was imprisoned or his new love interest will be killed.

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Rating: 8.7/10 (3 votes cast)

The Bird People in China

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The 1998 movie The Bird People in China (also known as Chûgoku no chôjin) by director Takashi Miike, is about a young Japanese businessman sent by his company to evaluate precious Jade found in a remote Chinese village. One his way there he meets a yakuza who was sent to tail him to protect his bosses interest in the company. When the men finally arrive their mission becomes sidetracked by their interest in a mysterious young village girl and the secret that makes men fly like birds.

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Rating: 5.7/10 (3 votes cast)

The Twilight Samurai

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The 2002 film The Twilight Samurai (also known as Tasogare Seibei) is a Japanese film that takes place in mid-19th century Japan (a few years before the Meiji Restoration). It follows the life of Seibei Iguchi, a low-ranking samurai employed as a bureaucrat. While he is poor, he is also very content. He comes to realize true happiness in life with his daughters, senile mother and an old childhood friend. While the film is based on a samurai, it severely lacks action scenes and instead chooses to focus on the emotions of a samurai.

The movie was directed by Yoji Yamada and won many Japanese film awards. It even received a nomination for the 2002 Academy Awards for best Foreign Language Film (although it did not win).

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Rating: 9.7/10 (6 votes cast)

3 Iron

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Sometimes more can be said by not saying anything at all. I think that was the premise for the movie 3 Iron (aka Bin Jip). In this story a young man breaks into the homes of vacationers and essentially lives their life for the night. He is even kind enough to repay them for their unknowing hospitality by doing their laundry and fixing things that are broken around their house. Everything takes a turn for him when one of the homes he breaks into is actually occupied by a beautiful woman who is hiding in her home from her abusive husband.

There is very little dialog in this entire film. That is part of the allure that drove me to watch this film. I was not let down one bit. This movie absolutely moved me!

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Rating: 9.0/10 (6 votes cast)