CHANNEL 4 4SEVEN E4 MORE4 FILM4 4MUSIC 4oD

Viewing your Watchlist and recommended content requires Javascript

  • 15
  • Action, Comedy
  • 1999
  • 101 mins

Nowhere To Hide

Nowhere To Hide

Synopsis

Hard-hitting chase thriller directed by the leader of the Korean New Wave Lee Myung-Se. A stunning visual feast, artfully playing with conventions of cinematic time and resembling a manga animation, this is a film dripping with Eastern promise

About

In a beautifully-shot early sequence, an unknown stranger is stabbed to death. The tone is set for the rest of the film. Drenched with startling colours, disjointed in its time structure and characterised by a lingering attention to indirect details (a girl playing at the scene of the crime, the reflection of the waiting assassin's face in a CD, rain pummelling the bonnet of the car he waits in) the sequence pounds on to a murderous freeze frame climax; teasing, dazzling and intriguing by turn.

Suddenly, the chase is on and a motley crew of ruthless, fascistic cops are on the trail, consistently eluded by the fugitive Sungmin (Ahn) - as smooth as polished ice and as bad as Lee Van Cleef. On the other side is the ultra-violent Detective Woo (Park), a man who has no qualms about torturing his captives. "Call a lawyer and say you were beaten, if I cared I wouldn't be a detective," he tells one bloodied heap.

The brutal police at first seem worse than the criminals, but soon reveal a tender, confused-big-kid side: a theme often movingly (especially thanks to Park's winning smile and fine slapped puppy impression) but sometimes clumsily dealt with - the film's one dud scene features drawn out soul-searching after a criminal is shot.

For the rest though, the viewer is led on a spectacular, frenetic trail through the Korean underworld; constantly assaulted and challenged by the ever-changing imagery and timescale of director Lee Myung-Se's unique brand of cinema.

Perhaps it will seem dated in a few years, but for now, who cares?

Cast & Connections

  • Actor: Lee Won-Jong, Jang Dong-Keon, Shim Cheoi-Jong, Choi Ji-Wu, Do Yong-Koo, Park Joong-Hun, Ahn Seong-Ki
  • Director: Lee Myeong-Se
  • Writer: Lee Myung-Se
  • Producer: Chung Tae-Won
  • Photographer: Jeong Kwang-Seok, Song Haeng-Ki
  • Composer: Cho Sung-Woo, Choi Young-Hoon, Kim Dae-Hong

In a nutshell

It is poetry in motion - a live action manga - and even though the visual bombardment sometimes jars and distracts from the action, it always looks incredible.

Latest from Film4...

  • Film4

    The Kingdom Of Dreams And Madness

    Director Mami Sunada spends a year behind-the-scenes at Studio Ghibli as the animation powerhouse finishes two prestige productions

  • Film4

    Hahaha

    Comedy-drama from South Korean director Hong Sang-soo. Two friends, one a film director and the other a critic, discover their lives overlap more than they thought

    On Film4: 7 Nov 1:00AM

  • Film4

    Hong Sang-Soo Season

    A series of films unreleased in the UK from acclaimed and prolific South Korean director Hong Sang-Soo

  • Film4

    Tower Heist on Film4

    Ben Stiller, Eddie Murphy & Casey Affleck lead an all-star cast in Brett Ratner's heist comedy

  • Channel 4 Blog

    Joe Cunningham's 11 recommendations for LFF 14

    Unfortunately I haven¿t been jet setting around the world this year to the various exciting international film festivals, but that¿s what makes the London Film Festival¿s compilation approach to progr

  • Channel 4 Blog

    Michael Leader's 11 recommendations for LFF 2014

    One of the best things about the London Film Festival¿s smorgasbord approach to programming is that, amongst the world premieres and gala screenings, there¿s an eclectic collection of exciting films o

Register with Film4.com

Personalise your Film4 experience

  • Set film reminders
  • Build your watchlist
  • Get film suggestions

or Register

Share