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DVD Review by David Blackwell

DETAILS: 122 minutes, first look at Lady Vengeance, director's commentary, original theatrical trailer, photo gallery, Tartan Asia Extreme previews

STUDIO: Tartan/ Palisades Pictures

RELEASE DATE:   11-22-2005

SYMPATHY FOR MR. VENGEANCE is brutal. It takes no prisoners as it will offer no happy endings once the tragic chain of events begins. Ryu, a deaf mute, has a sister who needs a kidney transplant. When he loses his life savings meant to pay for the operation after trying to buy a kidney off the black market, the events take a bad turn as a kidney is finally available and Ryu is fired from his job. His communist girlfriend hatches a plan to kidnap the daughter of the guy Ryu used to work for. Once they kidnap the girl, a the chain of events begin which leads the father and Ryu to seek vengeance against each other. OLDBOY has elements that SYMPATHY FOR MR. VENGEANCE lacks. It is a darker and more brutal tale than OLDBOY. It can be hard to watch once one brutal thing happens after another. Once you're on the train, there is no stepping off until the end of the movie.

VIDEO: 2.35:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen)

AUDIO: Korean 5.1 Dolby Digital, Korean 5.1 DTS, Korean 2.0 DS

The video and audio aren't as good as OLDBOY on DVD, but Tartan does a great job compared to transfers from other DVDs of the movie from around the world.

Subtitles: English, Spanish (movie only)

SPECIAL FEATURES: For extras material, it is light for a Tartan DVD release. An audio commentary (director Chanwook Park and guest) is included in addition to the original theatrical trailer and a photo gallery.  You learn some useful info and trivia from the director.  In way of previews, there is a first look at LADY VENGEANCE (which has been previewed on many recent Tartan DVD releases) and Tartan Asia Extreme previews for OLDBOY, H, and SPIDER FOREST.

FINAL ANALYSIS: If you're a fan of OLDBOY, check out SYMPATHY FOR MR. VENGEANCE. See the film that came before Park's masterpiece (OLDBOY. On September 26th, the Vengeance trilogy will be complete with the release of LADY VENGEANCE.

this review is (c)5-26-2006 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission (except for excerpts and a link to the review). Look for additional content at http://enterlinemedia.livejournal.com and send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com