I’ve already listed Old Boy as a movie that makes you want to kill yourself, but with an American remake coming out soon, I felt it necessary to reiterate my warning.
I stumbled upon this movie, coming out in 2013, while I was looking through the movies Josh Brolin had made and is making. Remember Brolin? Yeah, he was the older brother in Goonies (yeah that guy). Then he was in a bad, but sort of fun movie called Mimic and didn’t do much else until No Country for Old Men (which I didn’t enjoy, but was amazing, and he was perfect in). And although it won’t be a perfect movie, I’ll most likely see the new movie he’s in called Gangster Squad and I’ll most likely enjoy it.
But a movie that is in post production and ready to be released in the theaters in 2013 is called Old Boy. Here’s the short Synopsis:
“An everyday man has only five days and limited resources to discover why he was imprisoned in a nondescript room for 15 years without any explanation. “
Ok, let’s stop right there. That seems intriguing, and if you have any intention in seeing it, first, don’t, but if you don’t listen to me, fine, stop reading beyond here as I am about to give away the ending. This movie is a remake of a Korean film of the same name which I, unfortunately, have seen.
Old Boy, the Korean original, came out in 2003 and became popular among foreign film enthusiasts because the intriguing premise and a few fun and interesting scenes. One of them being the long, no cut action scene with the imprisoned main character escaping through a long hallway with dozens of men attempting to stop him while he pummels them all to death or severe injury. It’s a scene that is both brutal and fascinating to watch because of the cinematography and physical acting required by everyone in it. The other scene is one in which the main character eats an octopus live because he’s so damn hungry.
You can find the clip on youtube simply by searching “Old Boy eats octopus”. The dude picks up a live octopus, bites its head off and then stuffs its tentacles in his mouth and starts munching down…while a tentacle is wrapping itself around his fist and another grabbing onto his nose. Oh yeah, and that’s REAL. No special effects here folks. I wonder what the directed said before this scene. “Hey, so, there’s the octopus, and…yeah, so, eat it.”
It’s hard to explain what actually happens in Old Boy while being tactful and subtle, but I’ll give it my best.
The name “Old Boy” is in reference to the childlike state the older man is in because he’s been kept imprisoned by someone for fifteen years. There are two aspects of his personality that develop while kept in his one room bedroom. He punches the wall with his bare fists everyday, for fifteen years, which gives him a mean hit that doesn’t hurt his hand at all when he bashes other peoples faces. The other trait he develops is a hypersensitive sexual desire towards women that is expressed in the movie by his fixation on women on his tv, and other women he meets throughout the movie. One of the first women he meets, the women in the youtube video watching him eat the octopus, he falls in love with and they quickly begin a sexual relationship.
He eventually figures out who had imprisoned him and is about to kill him, but the man who orchestrated his imprisonment and is apparently in charge of a large criminal organization, asks him “Don’t you want to know why?” So, instead of killing the man who kept him locked up for fifteen years, Old Boy let him live and now has to figure out why he did that.
Let me tell you why he did that so that you don’t have to waste you time with this movie.
The man who imprisoned Old Boy, we’ll call him “the bad guy”, was actually a high school classmate of his. The story now gets bazaar. The bad guy, as a young boy, had a one time sexual encounter with his sister. Old Boy, as a young boy, not knowing they were siblings, witnessed this and inadvertently spread a the rumor. The bad guys sister began to show signs of a false pregnancy and because she thought she was actually pregnant and the rumor, committed suicide. This is weird, creepy and bizarre enough, but no, it gets worse.
Blaming Old Boy and desiring revenge, he orchestrates an elaborate plan to kidnap and brainwash him for fifteen years. He is eventually released, falls in love with the woman who watches him eat the octopus and the rest of the movie goes from there. At the very end of the movie, the antagonist, bad guy, (whatever) explains why he did it. Old Boy had a daughter and sometime afterwards our bad guy kidnapped him and brainwashed him to fall in love with a very specific woman. That woman is Old Boys own daughter. He doesn’t recognize her because it’s been fifteen years, and they fall in love with each other because he brainwashed both of them to. Old Boy goes nuts after hearing this and begs him never to tell his daughter. He then cuts out his own tongue with a scissors so that he can’t either. Old Boy goes back to the woman he was brainwashed-to-fall-in-love-with/his own daughter and never tells her. The end.
Now…I’m not sure how much of that will be changed in the American version…but that whole creepy twist at the end is pretty much the whole point of the screwed up story, so I doubt they’ll change much. And that’s why, instead of watching the American version of Old Boy, I will be doing…anything else up to and including exploratory surgery on my eyeballs with a cheese grater.