It’s about damn time, had been meaning to give this one a try because I actually got a few people recommend/request it to me. Regrettably I had some trouble finding a way to watch it though and so I had to put it on the back burner for awhile. Then to my surprise I find out that not too long ago Netflix had picked it up. I immediately jumped for joy and well…I am now proud to say that I finally got around to it. 🙂
So what is this movie about and why was I full of such enthusiasm? I guess it’s because I heard it was supposed to be a smart disaster movie, something I feel comes few and far between. Fortunately, this was just as good as I had hoped maybe even a tad better. What you have here is the story of an everyman named, Lee Jung-soo, who on his way to his daughters birthday gets caught up on a freak accident. As a result of poor construction a tunnel ends up caving in on him. Making this a tale of survival while at the same time throwing in some social commentary into the mix.
To start I wanna first give a warning to any people who may suffer from claustrophobia because this movie may raise your anxiety levels. Even I had sweaty palms at a couple of points in the movie. O.O” That is because when I say that the tunnel collapses around him I mean it. This guy doesn’t even have room to stand, that’s how dire the situation he is in is. Luckily the film does cut back and forth with the rescue efforts on the outside to give you some breathers. Regardless it’s a hard watch due to there being an unbelievable amount of tension in not knowing if he can make his resources last. The poor man has to worry about his food supply, his water supply, and if he can save the battery life on his phone. Meanwhile trying not to panic and give clues as to where in the tunnel he might actually be.
All stuff that would be interesting on it’s own but yes there is more. This could have been a one man show but you do have other characters. In particular the other real standout is Dae-kyung. The no nonsense kinda guy who is in charge of all the rescue efforts. It’s through him that we get the logistics of how things turned out this way. He is also another one we root for because from early on we know that there is no way for Jung-soo to get out of this himself. Plus we do we get to learn enough about his character to like him through phone communicaions that the two share, which was a cool dynamic. Those parts were the best when it came to the acting because the emotions were able to cut loose. You could hear the worry and dread in Jung-soos’s voice but at the same time the assertiveness in Dae-kyung’s. Oh and you learn some cool survival tips in those exchanges too.
As for other characters we don’t get to focus much on them other than a little bit of the wife with snippets of the daughter. Just enough to relate to them and feel for them. Specially the hell his wife must be going through knowing that her husband’s odds aren’t so good. However it is heart warming how she sticks close by as all this is happening. Lending the little bit of hand that she can here and there.
Which now brings us to that social commentary aspect I mentioned earlier. This movie managed to show some of the darker aspects of humanity in here as well as the good. Earlier on you had a part with some reporters and lets just say that their actions were despicable. Showing the “views matter most” mentality that some of them have. But aside from that this movie also asked some tough questions. Like how much is a man’s life worth? A question that at first may seem callous because it’s brought up by business people. But as the story unfolds and that question moves from being about monetary value to about the lives of the rescuers, things do get more interesting. It’s not such a ludicrous question when you realize that yeah these rescuers are putting their lives at risk all for one person. I mean as an example ask yourself, if 3 people died to save 1 man is it worth it?How about 5, 7,10? It’s something interesting to think about right? Even if you believe that that person should be saved it will be hard to answer.
Then in terms off negatives, I do think some of those business people that brought the money problem up were portrayed to be too evil-ish. I think they could have taken a step back on that. Also , I woulda shaved like 10 min off. I just think 2+ hours is a bit much for this type of movie. Other than that everything was solid, from the effects of the accident down to the performances. You can tell a lot of care was put into the tinniest of details here.
So if you want something that is both thrilling and will make you think then check this movie out. Just beware that it may give you a newfound fear of tunnels. With that I will see you next time. Feel free to share your thoughts if you have seen the movie or plan too. 🙂