PictureLike I said above, there is something of the Full Monty about Crying Fist and I would list the picture quality as one of them. The movie feels low rent with noise permeating the frame with abandon. But this is soft noise, not the pronounced grit you would find on, say, The Shield. This gives the picture a furry indistinct look almost reminiscent of the days of VHS (though obviously not nearly as bad). Contrasts, for example, can often seem over exposed with blooming ever present. Look at the scene where Yoo Sang-hwan is talking to his father on a communal garden step. Colours seem to be deliberately subdued, an underground car park in particular appearing altogether too beige to be natural. At least, they are until the boxing begins where the colours are all well presented and natural. Detail seems to sharpen up in these latter scenes too, where the lighting is more subtle. Sweat tears and blood, all, are rendered in heart breaking detail worthy of the wait.
SoundAs a character based piece, I expected little in the way of sound. I was right for those Bass freaks who pointlessly fast forward to the tank tapping scene in Nemo, or those who “chapter back” to the beginning of a THX trailer five times in a row. Those weaned on more subtle aural viscera are well catered for, however, with pleasing wrap around effects and clear even dialogue. As usual it is the centre channel that garners the most attention, and your satisfaction of Crying Fist sound will be largely determined by your centre speaker quality. This isn't to say there are no special audible fancy effects, though. Look out for the mega-phone feedback half way through, or the noise of tyres squealing in an indoor car park.
ExtrasThis Crying Fist pack is a wonderful thing to behold. A canvas effect box that feels like those old books you sometimes see in libraries or “ye olde” pubs listed in the Good Beer Guide. A very well made book accompanies the two disc set which has an arty flair and looks wonderful. The set even smells nice, for goodness sake! It is a shame, then, that none of the extras appear to have English subtitles as I get the feeling that there is a lot to admire, here. Shame I can't. Still, there will be folk out there who can, so please post a reply telling us all what the content is like?
VerdictA wonderful movie that, despite its flaws still works very well. If there isn't a lump in your throat, if not an actual tear on your cheek, by the end, then you have a heart of granite. Buy it, you won't be disappointed.
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