The first time I knew about this movie is January 31st. Then I searched it on the cinema in my city in case it is still showing. I got my hope high to see it is still showing in other city but unfortunately the cinemas in my city didn’t air the movie for long. When I emailed them about it, they said they could organized the screening if I have large groups to fill the theater. How can I? I just wanted to watch this movie alone. So I could only wish for some websites to upload this movie to watch at home.
My wish was granted. On February 14th, I didn’t need to wait for long, a website has uploaded the movie. I watched the movie in the morning to noon of February 15th. I really wanted to watch this movie, Why? First, it’s because the genre, Fantasy, Action, Drama. I red the reviews on several websites and it mentioned about the stunning CG effects and a strong story. These are all we could need for a movie with that genres. Not to mention the strong casts have been known for their strong acting performances. I also read that this movie surpassed 10 Million viewers in South Korea alone in short amount of time. But although that’s great as a premise, I don’t really consider box office record as something that assure the quality of a movie.
So what about this movie that attracts so many viewers?
First, the story.
Story of the death of an ordinary fireman named Ja-hong (Cha Tae-hyun). Gang-rim (Ha Jung-woo), the head grim reaper, Haewonmaek (Ju Ji-hoon), and Dukchoon (Kim Hyang-gi) are assigned as public defenders to escort Ja-hong in the afterlife and represent him in 7 trials in 49 days to find out how Ja-hong lived his life and where he ought to spend the rest of eternity, heaven, hell, or granted for reincarnation.
The story is based on a webtoon by Joo Ho-min, Along With the Gods.
I was curious about the concept of 49 days after death in Korea. The first time I heard about it was through the drama 49 Days. And along the way, I watched several dramas nudged on the topic of the afterworld in Korean myth. But none really based the whole story in the afterworld. This is another reason I was so looking forward to this movie.
Before discussing the movie further, just watch the movie first here
I wanted to dwell further on the story of the movie. But because it is a recent movie which is first released in South Korea in December 20th, 2017, it’s not even two months old. So surely there are many who haven’t watched. I think I will stop here first. Then I will add more about the movie in a few days or weeks as to not spoil the story for those who haven’t watched.
Now it’s time to discuss the movie.
It’s been a little over a month since I posted this and it gained over 1800 views. It might not seem plenty but for a blog like mine which rarely get views over a hundred it was quite much. Now I assume people have already watched this movie, I want to start reviewing it.
The concept of the afterworld is what attracting me to the movie so I start with that. In Korea, people believe in the concept of reincarnation, that if you live good live you will get the chance to reincarnate. This movie also mention about 7 types of hell and heaven. It’s quite similar in Islam there is a concept of 7 level of heaven and 7 level of hell. But there is never such thing as reincarnation, because the afterworld is described as our last home for eternity. While the world is actually just a test where our live spent there is short. The 7 types of hell or heaven in Korean myth have separate trials while in Islam, the trial is just one and it’s like another phase before decision on which level of hell or heaven someone is to enter based on their life’s deeds.