Why does Hollywood feel the need to take classic non-American films and rape them until they're deformed beyond all recognition? It must be nice to make millions of dollars by doing nothing more than crapping on various works of art from other countries. I'm apparently in the wrong line of business.
First off, Jesse Bradford sounds like a weasel and gives a mediocre performance. Just watch his reaction after Elisha Cuthbert lies to his teacher it's terrible. Cuthbert is your typical Hollywood actress under 30 years of age very hot, but couldn't act her way out of a paper bag. Watching her try to be "sassy" is incredibly painful because at times her mannerisms are overly accentuated to the point where she looks like she's got a bad case of hemorrhoids. As far as supporting actors go, the guy who played the runaway soldier was dreadful, and the old man near the end was even worse. Ji-hyun Jun's performance in the original was no fluke. South Korea has at least 5 times as much youthful acting talent than the States. That's no exaggeration.
This is your typical Hollywood remake that reenacts a dozen or so scenes from the superior original in unimaginative, idiotic ways (ala "The Departed") in an effort to pander to the dim-wittedness and xenophobia of your typical American moviegoer who would rather slit their wrists than read subtitles. This is evident in the dialogue, which is way too cringeworthy for its own good. Every single line is opaque, thoughtless, and overly simplified to the point of sheer stupidity. Here are some direct quotes from the film:
1. "Death, man
death sucks!" 2. "I like you and the last three days have been some of the most interesting (if not painful) of my life. But my brain is hemorrhaging and my career is ruined and I just think it's better if we part ways." 3. "Who would be intrigued by a hot, mysterious, passionate, possibly bipolar, violent, drunken, arrogant, rude woman?" 4. "Whatever she was going through it was beyond anything in my experience and beyond my ability to fix. I had no right to judge her. If I chose to stay with her (knowing the risks) all I could do was give her love and respect and see how the story would end." 5. "I'm sorry. He's just a guy my father made me go out with, but every second I was with him I was wishing it was you and that's why I called you tonight I couldn't take it anymore. Charlie, I need you." 6. "Hey kid, is this a subway platform or your own piece of drawing paper?" 7. "You know what? I know that you really don't want to hurt me." 8. "Yessss, I'm free and I'm loving it. Train where are you. Wooo hooo. Choo choo."
Hollywood translation: "We resent your lack of intelligence, so we are apparently forced to lower the quality of this film by providing superfluous exposition on the part of the characters for the sole purpose of explaining every little thing to you. You are incapable of extracting emotional content from subtle mannerisms, symbolism, or even the slightest bit of indirect communication. Yes, you are a moron, but if we talentless hacks want to make money, we simply need the characters to verbally and plainly explain every little emotion, lest you become completely lost."
Am I the only one who realizes just how much Hollywood hates its own fans? At least 90% of their films are devoid of any and all subtlety. This is even worse in the case of remakes, because they must knowingly suck every ounce of intelligence out of the original film. Wake up people. You can cut the patronization with a knife. These movies scream, "You are an imbecile!" And yes, supporting them does make you an imbecile.
Oh, but that's not all. If the insipid, moron-proof dialogue weren't bad enough, this movie drops one of the most idiotic psychological twists humanly imaginable. Our two lovebirds decide to take exactly one year off so Cuthbert can heal her wounds, but she shows up 24 hours late because she needed one more arbitrary day for healing. That's beyond ridiculous. Only a Hollywood executive could think of something this mind-numbingly stupid.
The only halfway decent moments in this movie use concepts from the original. There's not a shred of well-executed originality to be found in this steaming pile of excrement. The only positives I can think of are a few pretty camerashots. Hence the 2/10 rating. The only comfort I have is that this vile garbage went direct to DVD. A small victory in the neverending battle against the cinematic dark ages that we Americans currently reside in. Cultural naivety, ignorance, repetition, and incredibly low standards seem to be the favored cinematic ideals around here as of late. However, I must say that the original Korean film is still nowhere to be found at your local video store. One might expect a simultaneous DVD release along with the remake. Such is unfortunately not the case.
People wonder why I generally hate Hollywood cinema as much as I do, but I ask you my dear reader how can I not? I don't like to be patronized by a bunch of talentless hacks in corporate suits who insult my intelligence by making a movie like this and actually expecting me to like it. Maybe I'm missing something, because everyone else around me finds comfort in this masochistic, self-hating existence. My fellow Americans may be flamboyant cowboys in terms of foreign policy, but in terms of entertainment they are the equivalent of abused housewives who keep coming back for more. Whether its ignorance or sheer stupidity, they just don't know any better.
May Hollywood burn in hell for all eternity. God knows they deserve it.