After the recent movie reviews of European movies, now it’s time to turn back to Korean movie, where the quality and production value are always one of the best in Asian Cinematography. This time, it is Slow Video, a comedy film directed by Kim Young Tak and starred one of the most prominent actors in South Korea: Cha Tae Hyun, who has been featured in many acclaimed films in the country like The Sassy Girl. Let’s take a look at whether this movie is a gem or just some decent one.
The basic premise is about Yeo Jang Boo, a man who achieved dynamic visual acuity, that enables him to see things in slow motion and be able to react to fast objects instantly. However, his special ‘power’ prevents him from running and he has to wear sunglasses for most of his life to prevent dizziness. One day, when he works in a CCTV Centre near his neighborhood, he finds his first love Bong Soo Mi. Although he is terrible socially, he strives to get her heart, but will he succeed?
Indeed, South Korean love comedy films have that unique flair in them. It is kinda like a special trait that is not usually seen in other movies, even from Japan or Taiwan. Sometimes, a film follows a formula, while others follow their own inspirations, Slow Video is the latter, with a little of the former. Slow Video itself is a weirdly lovable film that features a strange protagonist who, though he has a special ability, is essentially just a normal unsociable person. The film does not depict him as a superhero or someone handsome, but more of an anti-social guy who falls in love with a girl he sees on the CCTV screen. I have never read a plot like this before, and the multiple usages of CCTV as a plot device are pretty clever and also subtle enough to invoke the feeling of pure love with comedic moments.
The two actors are pretty suited to each other, where they are different in many aspects and yet they match up with each other somehow. I love how the protagonist has a quirky personality that creates many humorous situations. All the comedic moments felt genuine and not being pushed or forced. The narrative is very simple, but it is precisely this simplicity that we are able to focus more on the characters’ interactions. It is a combination of cute, funny and simple love that makes the movie such an enjoyable watch. The pacing is also almost perfect, except for the late middle portion where it can seem to drag a bit too long. Music wise they are using pretty standard K-Pop or some slow ballads that are quite a cliche in such film genre from the country.