Sung-soo KimSouth Korea136 minutes2016ColourKorean
A shady cop finds himself in over his head when he gets caught between Internal Affairs and the city’s corrupt mayor, in this scintillating crime drama from Korean maestro Kim Sung-soo (Musa: The Warrior).
Korean maestro Kim Sung-soo (Musa: The Warrior) returns to the Festival with this epic crime drama about the creeping corruption that threatens a modern metropolis — and jeopardizes one man's beleaguered soul.
Detective Han (Jung Woo-sung of The Good, the Bad, the Weird) has been engaged in shady activities ever since his wife was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Faced with accumulating medical bills, Han has decided to hand in his badge and work for Annam's Mayor, Park Sung-bae (Hwang Jung-min, last seen at the Festival in Veteran). Mayor Park wants to push through a multi-million-dollar development contract, and will go to any lengths to ensure expediency so long as Han does the dirty work. But Han's involvement in two sticky cases, the disappearance of a high-profile witness and the strange death of a fellow officer, garners him sudden unwanted attention. And as Internal Affairs possesses evidence of Han's misdeeds, he has no choice but to covertly work for both sides — and place himself in twice the danger.
Following Biteu, City of the Rising Sun, and Musa: The Warrior, this is the fourth collaboration between Kim and Jung. Sinking his teeth into one of the meatiest roles of his career, Jung performs a true feat, finding the darkness and light in Han as he makes a perilous journey through his city's underworld.
Balancing breathtaking scale with intricately sculpted characters, Asura: The City of Madness is an absorbing, superbly crafted work of entertainment.