After the statute of limitation expires on the murders he has committed, Lee Du-seok publishes an autobiography describing all his murders in great detail. Detective Choi, who investigated Lee’s murders 15 years ago starts the chase once again and Han Ji-soo, who lost her daughter to Lee, pledges vengeance. Meanwhile, another killer appears, casting doubt to whether Lee is the real serial killer. The key here is how well the story juggles the truth and how solid the description of the characters’ tangled relationships is. Korean cinema has brought a lot of talent forward and they have made some incredible movies over the last 10-20 years. This just continues in that same line.
Korea has this law where if they can’t solve a case for 15yrs they dismiss it. And even if the person that committed certain crimes is revealed, the authority can’t do anything about it. In Korea they changed the law to more then 15yrs. But anyways it’s about what if that person that committed an atrocious crime such as murder reveals himself to the public. And a cop is right on his tail to get even with the guy, because he has a major beef with the culprit. I thought it was going to go in that “Law Abiding Citizen” sort of direction but am glad that it’s actually far from it. To be fair, the story structure wasn’t half bad. Everything was accessible and easily entertaining. However, the problem lies in the plot draped over the structure. The whole story was pivoted on ideas and themes that have been honed in once and again by the genre—statue of limitations, family relationships, revenge, that innocent lover, foul-mouthed detectives seeking redemption—and all of them tie together in a rather unoriginal manner.
Similar to Park Chan Wook’s Sympathy for Lady Vengeance, the events that unfold here include that of the impact to family, and how family decide to take it upon themselves in vigilante style to execute their brand of justice when the law gets paralyzed. In between the more emotional, dramatic moments where their pain get experienced with Lee’s sheer audacity of a public appearance and confession, director Jung felt it was perhaps appropriate to inject extremely light comedy to diffuse heavier moments that were dangerously close to stagnating the narrative, with a wee bit of action for good measure as well. Something’s not quite right, and there’s more than meets the eye of course, when yet another man comes out to claim notoriety and responsibility to the serial killings, throwing everything you’d assume into disarray.
The decision to cast TV star Park Si-hoo in the role of Doo-seok adds to this further, certainly for those who are aware of his television career and/or his large fan base, and though recent real-life rape allegations against the star were not related to the film in any respect (and all charges against the actor were subsequently dropped), they nonetheless add another level of thought and even serious contemplation to the dissections of celebrity adoration within the narrative. The twisting plot and the two leading actors keep the movie moving along, but ‘Confession of Murder’ ultimately does not reach the levels of cinematic intensity set by ‘The Chaser’. Shame, too, because this had all the ingredients to surpass it. Guess we will have to wait a tad bit longer.