Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Blood is prettier than water

Movie • A TALE OF TWO SISTERS • 2003
A Tale of Two Sisters is another Korean movie. They have a knack for confusing me, even with the simplest of plots. Story-telling is a cultural thing, and I'm just not used to seeing stories told this way. Gobs of it was plain weirdness for what seemed like the sake of weirdness. Then suddenly, one line is delivered that sent tingles down my spine. Su-mi’s father says something toward the end that puts everything into perspective… mostly.
Su-mi and Su-yeon are sisters forced to live with their new “mother.” She and their father seem like an unlikely couple, and she apparently has a problem with these children. There is a lot of high-pitched yelling between the girls and their dad and step-mom; so keep your finger on the volume control if you don’t want a headache.
A Tale of Two Sisters is beautifully filmed, and every frame would make it into a frame on my wall if I had the space. But it seems a lot of the images are confusing to the story. I was never certain, even at the end whether the time-line jumped around or was the story in her mind… or her mind… or her mind… or his mind… or was it an explanation? Either way, if I hadn’t have watched it alone it would have been one of those great movies to discuss. What did this mean? What did that mean?
I recommend it to people who fancy subtitles and plot confusion. Come on, you can handle it.