DVD Review by David Blackwell
DETAILS: 98 minutes audio commentary, 10 deleted scenes, 4 featurettes, theatrical trailer, previews
AUDIO: Korean 5.1, 2.0 Dolby Surround, 5.1 DTS
Subtitles: English, Spanish (film only)
STUDIO: Tartan Asia Extreme/ Popcorn Film/ Lotte Entertainment/ The Dream Pictures
RELEASE DTAE: 5-8-2007
If it wasn't for the twist and the mood created by ARANG, it would be just another formulaic South Korean thriller. One
quote on the back cover of the DVD declares it as CSI meets THE GRUDGE. It's more cop thriller than horror film. They were
trying to steal elements from SE7EN. ARANG is a film of sadness and a journey for a female detective who was raped as a teenager.
Detective So-Young is out to find the guy with the scar on his hand (because she wants to kill him), but she never does find
him. Instead, she is investigating a series of bizarre murders linked to a couple of murders in a salt village about a decade
ago. She is assigned a rookie partner. Each victim receives an email with a link to a web page and then they are visited by
a woman with black hair in a black dress right before they die.
What is it with black haired women as the threat in Asian Horror?! It has been overplayed by now. get over it. I do like
the twist on the theme that the female detective visits the dead woman in her dreams. The music score is one of the best elements
of ARANG. The film is almost worth watching just for the music.
SPECIAL FEATURES: The audio commentary is with the two lead actors, the producer, and the director. They talk about
the film while sometimes not taking things too seriously. THE MAKING OF ARANG is a 34 minutes featurette with more than one
chapter. BEHIND THE SCENES has interviews with crew members and show behind-the-scenes footage of the production. INTERVIEW
WITH THE CAST is really misleading since it is one cast member and a hairstylist/make-up woman as they recount strange happenings
on the set. INTERVIEW WITH THE MUSIC DIRECTOR is a short interview with the composer (he talks about the emotion of the music
and finding it) that is padded with stills and clips from ARANG (played to the music from the film). This featurete could
have been half the length.
The 10 deleted scenes mostly consist of extended scenes, little character mood moments, and a dropped subplot. Also included
is the original theatrical trailer and the usual Tartan Asia Extreme previews (and please get rid of that forced trailer before
the menu you can't skip).
FINAL ANALYSIS: I've seen better, but ARANG entertained me for 90 minutes. The DVD has plenty of extras.
this review is (c)5-13-2007 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission (except for excerpts and a link
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