The King of Pigs

The King of Pigs

Yeon Sang-ho (2011)

96min
15 Certificate
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Review

Our Score
Though it is an animation from the Far East, this brooding, adult-orientated Korean film is like little else from the region, eschewing the hypnotic visual-lullaby style of Hayao Miyazaki and the cool, big-eyed, pop-culture overload of many anime. Instead, director Yeon Sang-ho goes for something darker and more ragged - the animation itself has an edgy, punk sensibility, and the violence is harsh by any standards. Indeed, it begins with a murder. Having killed his wife in a moment of madness, bankrupt businessman Hwang Kyung-min seeks out his childhood friend Jung Jong-suk, now a struggling writer. Together they reminisce about their unhappy years at school, where they were dismissed as "pigs" by the ruling elite of wealthy jock "dogs", and recall how they suffered in silence until dropout schoolmate Kim Chul ("The King of Pigs") struck back on their behalf. Revenge is never pretty in much of Korean cinema, and an early shocking scene that sees one of the bullies whipped in the face by Chul's belt buckle sets the tone for the gritty, unflinching revelations that follow in this bleak urban drama.

Summary

Two old schoolfriends are reunited after 15 years by a traumatic incident. The event forces them to reflect on some of the horrors in their own childhood, and the time when one of their friends resorted to brutal violence to fight back against the school's oppressive social structure. Animated thriller, with the voice of Ik-joon Yang and Jeong-se Oh. In Korean.

Cast & Crew

Jung Jong-suk Yang Ik-june
Hwang Kyung-min Oh Jeong-se
Kim Chul Kim Hye-na
Young Jung Jong-suk Kim Kkobbi
Young Hwang Kyung-min Park Hee-von
Director Yeon Sang-ho
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Other Information

Language: Korean +subtitles Colour Theatrical distributor: Terracotta Distribution Guidance: Violence, swearing. Available on: Available on DVD Released on: 25 Jan 2013

Drama

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