What better way to kick off 2021 than with a big old slice of South Korean killing machine goodness!!!
Signature Entertainment are looking to kick off 2021 in the same way they ended 2020… In Lockdown!!! Nah that’s just jokes. But Signature did drop a smorgasbord of delectable treats in the last month of 2020 with flicks like Chronical 2067 and Jiu Jitsu, they are kicking off the new year with an absolute banger with South Korean flick Deliver us From Evil. Equal parts Man on Fire and Leon with a smattering of Hard Boiled and grimy kinetic action sequences audiences have come to love since the likes of The Raid.
I hadn’t heard of this one but not being one to turn my back on the promise of a great Foreign language flick I was hugely intrigued. In all honesty sometimes this is how you discover an absolute gem. My days in the video store taught me this, with the likes of Infernal Affairs, Night Watch and Brotherhood then not long ago when Russian flick Why Don’t You Just Die fell into my lap. So let’s do this…
DELIVER US FROM EVIL
Director: Won-Chan Hong Writer: Won-Chan Hong
Cast: Hwang Jun-Min, Lee Jung-Jae, Jung-Min Park, Moon Choi
In-Nam (Hwang Jun-Min) is an ex black ops agent with a particular set of skills. Since leaving that life he has become a Hitman for hire and he is extremely proficient at what he does. After being contracted to find the Daughter of his murdered ex, he heads to Tokyo on the case. However Ray (Lee Jung-Jae) the brother of In-Nam’s last kill is hot on his heels and looking for bloody murderous revenge. What started as a somewhat simple rescue mission becomes a deadly game of chess as In-Nam the hunter has now become the hunted against a truly formidable foe. Add to this the fact that the girl he is out to rescue may bring about some revelations he was not expecting and you have a slick hyper brutal multi layered story that seeks to impress you visually and tug on the heart.
Deliver us From Evil does play as a standard by the numbers Man on Fire knock off at first, injecting scenes hugely reminiscent of Leon too. Once you really start getting into the Meat and the Cheese of the flick though, it really begins to shine. Hwang-Jun Min as In-Nam is outrageously compelling and no matter how dark the road he is forced to travel you can’t help but root for the guy. A little research and you find that this guy is a superstar in his home country and it’s easy to see why, even in scenes of little dialogue he demands your attention.
The fight choreography in Deliver us From Evil is another notch above what you might expect from this genre, sure gunplay is a must but some of the close quarter combat is as Fast, chaotic and Frenetic as it gets. Now I don’t want to give spoilers but it’s fairly obvious throughout the flick that we are leading to a showdown between In-Nam and Ray (Lee Jung-Jae) and I just want to put here that you could have made me wait six hours for this showdown and it still would have been worth the wait. For a movie full of sexy visceral action beats this one in particular is the sexiest, up there with the two brothers vs mad dog in The Raid fight sequence.
Quickly on that Lee Jung-Jar as the Villain of the flick absolutely steals the whole movie. What a character guy plays just superb.
I know that foreign language movies are not for everyone and I get that but I have to warn people that you truly could be missing some absolute gems because of this view. Do I think you may come out of this thinking ‘damn that makes my top 5 of the year’? No course I don’t but there is a lot of heart here, a real good story and some quality performances from our core cast. This is Director Won-Chan Hongs second movie and it’s a very clear indication of how great a director he could be. Very slick, Super Polished in places and Grimy Dirty in others, Cinematography moves with the story being told during fight sequences in a seamless manner what more could you ask for?. I guarantee you won’t forget this movie in a hurry.
It’s a 3.9 out of 5 for me. Let me justify this because I really wanted to drop a 4 on this but in the latter stages this movie begins to lose me with outlandish scenarios that don’t necessarily reflect the earlier styling so I drop it a bit but it’s still a recommend from me so check it out on Digital HD Jan 4th.
Signature Entertainment presents Deliver Us From Evil on Digital 4th January 2021