Monday, November 30, 2009

Under 250: Thirst

Stephanie Meyer hasn't killed the vampire story just yet. Director Chan-Wook Park (Oldboy), brings his trademark style to the bloodsucking mythology with Thirst, the tale of a priest who, in trying to do good, is accidentally turned by a bad blood transfusion. Father Sang-hyeon (Kang-ho Song) finds himself walking the line between feeding sinful desires of the flesh and filling the ever increasing needs of his spirit. It's a clever juxtaposition, and one that heightens the dizzying, brilliantly paced storytelling at work in the film. Effortlessly navigating through heavy dramatic tension, buckets of blood, eroticism, and dark humor, is a genre bending romance, epic in its scope and intimate in its telling. Kang-ho Song has an undeniable charisma, and you believe and side with him even as he falls deeper into depravity. This is no horror film, this is an exercise is methodical sadism and one that puts the relationships constructed in Twilight thoroughly under the lens. Thirst exists where escapism and brutality meet, and the tale is brilliantly told in stunning, truly beautiful cinematography. Park knows how to use color and angles in a way that clearly establishes him as one of the finest directors of our time.

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