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Friday, February 17, 2017

U-NEUN NAM-JA / NO TEARS FOR THE DEAD (2014)

Korean writer/ director Jeong-beom Lee missteps in this action-thriller follow-up to his MAN FROM NOWHERE/’10. It starts well enough as Dong-gun Jang’s hitman extraordinare neatly dispatches everyone at a secret ‘Triad’ gang meeting in hopes of grabbing a FlashDrive loaded with Account Info & Codes to 100 mill in off-shore cash. But a sudden noise behind a padded door brings on a final Rat-a-tat-tat! And behind it, a little girl gets shot thru the heart. Turns out she was the mob accountant’s daughter and now a haunted, guilt-ridden Jang is assigned to track down the mother, who’s back in Korea, locate the missing FlashDrive . . . and leave no one behind. But instead of executioner, the assassin becomes her protector. And what a crowd to protect her from! After a deceptively quiet, get-to-know-you second act, Lee really lays on the action . . . too much of it. The pieces are often dazzling, but rarely connect into readable patterns; the helter-skelter randomness wears you down. A writing partner with more of a narrative bent might help.

DOUBLE-BILL: Lee’s second film, MAN FROM NOWHERE shows his promise in much better light.

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