masterly master lee

a home for forgotten and famous korean pulp, its heroes, its heroines, and its pulpeteers

Tube 튜브 2003

tube.jpgThis is what happens if you put together Die Hard, Speed, Hunter (yes, the TV series), all John Woo movies but without the white pigeons, a gifted actress with a penchant for choosing the wrong movie and a script writer with a penchant for choosing the most implausible plot turn. Tube starts with a big bang at the airport and ends with a whimper. Three (!) terrorists make short work of several heavily armed SWAT-teams and take off with a valuable computer chip. We are introduced to Pak Sangmin as the really cool leader of the terrorists T and Kim Seokhun as Jay, his adversary, a significantly less cool detective. They respect each other, but they don’t like each other, since they are both responsible for the deaths of their respective girlfriends. And from there the story rapidly deteriorates: Jay is hot on the tail of T, but his bosses don’t want to know. T is really a nice guy, formerly on the side of the good guys, but exploited and abused by his corrupt political masters. Jay is helped by Kay (I kid you not), a variation on the prostitute with a heart of gold. She is a pickpocket. Kay saves Jay by giving him something made of metal which he put in his breast pocket… It is hard to believe but the cliches in the script are outnumbered by its implausibilities. Shoot-outs are just like the A-team (well, not exactly, nobody gets up and dusts his shoulders): the protagonists never get hit, no matter what. But beware if you haven’t been introduced to the audience, you’re liable to die a horrible death. The rest of the movie is like a game. The only way not to walk away from it is to try and guess what action sequence was stolen from what film. If T doesn’t blow up that subway, you’ll do it yourself. This movie gives pulp a bad name.

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