masterly master lee

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

Archive for blockbuster

Shadowless Sword 無影劍 2005 review

shadow1.jpgThis must be my favorite pulp movie or at least one of my favorites. Shadowless Sword 무영검/無影劍 is extremely well-made fun, loaded with historical and contemporary references and with those rare actors who under the right direction gracefully bear the load of impressive action scenes and tongue-in-cheek acting. Read the rest of this entry »


D-war 디워 2007

dragonwars-poster.jpg“Since the dawn of what became a legend, the most unimaginable is about to occur . This summer, experience the absolute conquest of all mankind. Beginning with one search. For the one and only. The chosen one. Descended from the heavens above. Welcome to Dragon Wars.”

Yup, that about says it for D-war or Dragon Wars. Read the rest of this entry »

Typhoon 태풍 2005

typhoon.jpgKwak Kyung-taek made millions of friends with his 2001 smash hit Friend 친구 which had all of South Korea imitating Pusan dialect for the next year. With Typhoon he probably lost them all. Allegedly 15 million dollars went into making this melodramatic tearjerker Read the rest of this entry »

Hanbando 한반도 2006

hanbando.jpgThe man who brought us the reasonably enjoyable cop flicks Two Cops 투캅스 I, II, III, the overly nationalist action drama Shilmido 실미도 and the action blockbuster Public Enemy 공곡의적 is back. This time Kang Woo-suk tells a story set in the not-too-distant future in which North and South Korea are planning to reopen the Kyungui Railway that once connected the southern tip of the peninsula with its northern top. But alas, in an act worthy of Emperor Ming the Merciless (and about as plausible), Japan throws a spanner in the works Read the rest of this entry »

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. Read the rest of this entry »

Arahan 아라한 대풍 대작전 2004

arahan1.jpgSurely this is cinema as it was meant to be. It entertains, moves, astounds, engages our sympathy, and makes one want more. It is a loving tribute to classic Asian martial arts and fantasy movies and it produces that elusive belly-aching laugh. The actors are great and the casting is a sequence of strokes of genius. It is the third movie made by the two golden brothers of Korean cinema: Ryu Seungwan 유승완 and Ryu Seungbeom 유승범. It is Arahan 아라한 대풍 대작전. Read the rest of this entry »