The Film tells the story about You-lim whose only daughter Eun-ah commits suicide after a rape by a group of male students. Because all of the suspects are minors, they can leave without the possibility of punishment by law. You-lim is so full of anger that she seeks out revenge on her own. Absolutely mesmerising in the role of Yoo-lim is Yu Sun, the TV actress demonstrating her versatility throughout the movie displaying a whole range of emotions. Sadly, that is where the good stuff ends. South Korean flicks are flicks I hold in high regards because 2013 has been a stellar year for them. Sadly, this one misses the mark.
This movie supposed to be tragic, but the stupid situations shown on the screen can only make the viewer laughing. Every scene in that movie is overplayed, and the simplistic and sometimes grotesque depiction of the shown events borders with amateurishness. When a woman raises the knife to kill her daughter’s attacker in a scene that continues for half length of the movie, while a policeman points his gun at the woman to prevent the killing, what do the movie creators think? That we are still in the era of the speechless movies? That we should accept that naive garbage? After the Kim Ki-duk’s movies one can only wonder on whether South Korea has no other great film directors. Maybe in Korea that movie is acceptable, but for the western viewer it’s a pure waste of time.
Opening as a compelling portrait of a teenage girl whose first crush turns into a gang-rape nightmare that triggers her suicide, “Don’t Cry, Mommy” runs off the rails with her grieving mother’s quest for vengeance. You know those adverts with the starving children? This is basically a 90-minute version of one of those, but instead of starving children, it’s about how youth get away with various acts of crime, including serious acts as rape. It’s nothing special but the message is powerful enough to string this poor attempt together enough for it to at least have enough coherence to decipher properly. There is Lee Chang Dong’s Poetry (2010), which was also triggered by the gangrape of a schoolgirl, but he juxtaposes the ugly crime with lyrical beauty in a film of quiet power. Then there is Park Chan Wook’s vengeance trilogy (including Oldboy), which explored the theme in far greater depth. It is smart enough to have you baying for blood – and then satiates that with generous doses of violent payback.
During an interview, Dong Ho stated, “Even though it was just acting, I still felt horrible at what my character did in the movie to actress Nam Bo Ra. I can’t help but be furious at those people who hurt others but don’t even know that they have done wrong.” He continued, “I cannot believe how people can do such horrible things and don’t even feel remorse. I realized how serious this problem is, and I hope it can change. After watching this movie, I hope people will say that this is a must-see movie, rather than a fun-to-see movie.” I thought it was a good attempt to let singers diversify their characters a little, instead of the usual knight in shiny armour, but yet again, there was no scene of him acting violent. The scenes were all showing him, acting quiet, cool and calm. The whole movie was just a mess. I can’t help but to exclaim my disdain for the film. Avoid.