Mother - A Dark, Twisted Journey


                                  Mother opens on its title character, alone in a grassy field. She stops, looks around, sways a bit. Is she about to faint? No, dance. Lifting her arms, she begins to sway gently in the breeze: hips wiggle, arms wave. Mother is happy.
                                 As for the rest of us, we're intrigued. As well we should be: Mother is a an artful and a mesmerizing murder mystery from Korean writer- director Bong Joon-ho (Memories of Murder, The Host). You never know where “Mother’’ is going to go next. All you know is that you’re in the hands of a master with an appreciably bent sense of humor.

Plot
    A Mother lives with her 27-year-old son, Do-joon (Won Bin),is living in cramped quarters. She is the neighborhood  herbalist. Beautiful and strangely childlike, Do-joon doesn’t seem right in the head: he’s forgetful and seemingly naive. 
 
 
                  When her son is accused of a brutal murder, she must decide whether to defend him or leave him to the cops. The evidence against him is circumstantial but compelling. His mother, convinced he is being framed (perhaps by his best friend), begins an investigation to acquit her son. In doing so, she learns more about him than she'd bargained for. 
 
Analysis
              Mysteries are better suited to novels than motion pictures. This is because their complex plots are usually reduced to simple formulas within the confines of a two-hour limit. It is to the credit of director/co-writer Joon-ho Bong  that he avoids this trap. Mother has a narrative featuring more than one twist but it never feels rushed. Bong transforms each scene into a nail-biter in miniature, and he delights in showing how South Korea’s rigid social structure can’t help devolving into murder, madness, and all-around bad behavior.
 
                 The heart of “Mother,” Kim Hye-ja is a wonder. Perched on the edge between tragedy and comedy, her delivery gives the narrative, much of its momentum. Kim, 68, who is a longtime fixture of Korean TV dramas, makes a buzzing  mother — overattentive, overprotective, over-everything, her love for her son muddled with several combating emotions.
 
 
                  Mother is deftly plotted, applying Hitchcockian suspense. Mother also does not end predictably. Those familiar with murder-mystery movies will note that the apparent climax occurs almost a half-hour before the movie is over, indicating there is more to come. Mother concludes in a manner that solves all outstanding riddles and leaves the characters in satisfying states. Even if Hollywood attempted a remake, the studio's wont have the nerve to re-create Mother's conclusion.
 
                 Mother proves that you don't need explosion or special effects to make a film exciting. All that's required is a canny script and a trickster behind the camera. And Mother, definitely has both.
 
Trailer
 
 

8 comments:

Funny Gypsy said...

Sounds amazing! Can't wait to see it! :) Btw...can you do a review of "The Raid"? I just saw the trailer and I'm not sure if I should sit through 2 hours of violence if it doesn't have any other redeeming quality...(I'm also wondering how it got those film festival invitations...)

Arun said...

@Funny Gypsy, Thanks for your comment. I haven't watched "The Raid" yet. But, it is said to be a good action movie with plenty of violent stunt sequences. I think "Raid" is must watch for action movie fans.

Vetrimagal said...

Lovely intro to a movie, I do not know , where to access from?

I am feeling disappointed that i will not get to view this.

Chirag Joshi said...

thanks for the information
it seems like a different movie
will watch it soon

Vijay Shenoy said...

Well written... Quiet interesting indeed.

confusedyuppie said...

wow. rare for a murder mystery to get so many awards. mother seems promising

Arun said...

@Vetrimagal, Thanks for visiting the blog. You could download movies from torrent website.

@Chirag Joshi, Thanks for your comment, and do watch the movie.

Arun said...

@Vijay Shenoy, Thanks for your comment.

@confusedyuppie, Thanks for visiting the post. It's not the regular murder-mystery movie, and it really is a promising movie.