Bedevilled (2010)

Halloween Reviews 2020

Director: Cheol-soo Jang

Writer: Kwang-young Choi

Stars: Seong-won Ji, Yeong-hie Seo, Min-ho Hwang, Min Je, Ji-eun Lee, Jeong-hak Park 
A beautiful but ice-cold loan officer (Seong-won Ji) returns to the island where she grew up and becomes reacquainted with her childhood friend, Bok-nam (Yeong-hie Seo), who has been begging her to come visit. 
The reason becomes clear--she longs to escape with her daughter from her debased existence as the slave of the small island community, raped by her husband and brother-in-law and reviled by the gaggle of old women they support. 
There are many shades to this drama that can be overshadowed by its more sensational aspects. 
The potential dangers of the unrestrained male id. 
The ways the sins and tragedies of the past can poison the future. 

The desire to forget and deny the place and the people in one’s past. 
Seo Young-hee gives a tour-de-force performance; she shows us an essentially sunny and good-hearted woman, and then allows us to feel the tragedy as the last vestiges of hope and humanity are squeezed out of her. 
Despite all the physical abuse heaped on her, a more cruel betrayal sets the stage for a devastating finale. 
A very moving film, but not a pleasant watch. 


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