Save the Green Planet ! (2003, Jigureul jikyeora!)

US Koch Lorber Films DVD

Korean 2 disc edition

The text below is written 2015-11-05


Is this one of the most underrated movies in Modern Film History ? OK, it's a cult movie for sure but it should be hailed
and declared A Modern Masterpiece of Filmmaking, and this World Wide and not just among a few in South Korea.
If this film had been made in the USA it Would've been the most talked about film of the year, but now it's a secret among
cult movie fans shattered around the globe.
A Wildly inspired sci-fi thriller and almost unhinged so. Save the Green Planet is like no film i've ever seen before. Totally
unique and in the rare category of films - As Good as it Gets and this could be my favourite korean film of all time.

Jang Joon-hwan was a young talent that suddenly EXPLODED with this film, a volcano of mindblowing magma inspiration
that seeped into every true filmlovers soul - and then SILENCE before re-appearing over a decade later with a disappointing
mainstream fodder crime-action. The Pressure he must've felt after this beloved instant classic, the expectations, well, he's
back on the track at least and maybe he will find his form again in the future. But, the South Korean film industry has changed
a lot since the Golden Era of Korean and Japanese filmmaking, appr. 1995-2005 when young directors rocked the world.
The Filmcompanies for some strange reason allowed directors with new and imaginative ideas make their films and gave them
money to do it. Today, another story, today the Mainstream rules and NO crazy ideas are allowed.
It has to be indie productions then and without money to really do it. Save the Green Planet wouldn't have been made today.

Even though there's some really crazy ideas and unhinged stuff in this film, the film also, below it all, is a stringently made and
taut crime story and with 3 FANTASTIC actors in Shin Ha-kyun, Baik Yun-shik and Hwang Jun-min.
The Actors: Shin Ha-kyun is amazing and he shined also in Park Chan-wook's masterful drama Sympathy for Mr. Violence
in 2002 and Baik is always good as he was in Im Sang-soo's The President's Last Bang from 2005. But, maybe the unsung
hero or rather heroine of this film was Hwang Jung-min in the smaller part as Byung-goo's girlfriend. She's Hypnotic.

The Über Great Hwang Jung-min

She's psychotronic eccentric in her performance and unforgettable, not the usual cute filmstar. I've seen her in other films
from South Korea and i think she may be mostly an accomplished theatre actress (she could be seen 2012 in Im Sang-
soo's new version of the Housemaid in a small role). I'm pretty sure she would destroy most of the cutie-cute female film
stars acting wise if she got the chance. But You, Jang Joon-hwan, Maestro, gave her the chance to shine, Thanks, thanks.


Demented Lee Byung-goo (Shin Ha-kyun) who wears some alien-protection gear are pretty obsessed with his knowledge
that the industrialist and owner of a chemical company Kang Man-shik (Baik Yun-shik) really is an alien from the planet
Andromeda. Together with his chubby girlfriend Sooni (Hwang Jun-min) he kidnaps Kang and the eccentric police detective
Chu is investigating. Well, that's that, i can't tell more as this film should be seen by everyone and that ending .... WOW!
Either you love it or hate it. I Love it and it could be the most genius ending ever in world cinema.

Don't get fooled by the un-appropriate DVD sleeve - this is no comedy for sure. The US DVD came in 2 different sleeves
and the korean 2 disc edition from CJ Entertainment had DTS sound and a disc with extras that wasn't subtitled in english.
But first there was a Limited edition who sold out quickly and i had a couple in my shop. It was a paper box with an
anti-alien spray and an anti-alien piece of cloth.
The US DVD is in anamorphic widescreen 1.85:1 and extras are: Deleted scenes with an introduction from Jang (15 min),
interview at home with the sympathetic Jang (5:30), Making of featurette incl. interview with director Jang and photographer
Hong Kyung-pyu (14 min), Behind the scenes featurette (12:30 min), Jang speaking with his fans (11 min), Original Korean
trailer, US trailer and a Music video (King Joe)

 

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