The Dutch philosopher Baruch de Spinoza (1632-1977) argued that the divinity nature of an entity capable of ruling all others resided precisely in its character of being able to interfere with everything, after all, all beings and even all things have their bright, celestial side, and its dark portion, which is never given to chance, exists precisely because it obeys a determination of the Most High himself. For many thinkers who dwell on Spinoza’s work, it is very difficult to understand why God, who knows everything, who sees all things that have happened since the beginning of time, including those that have not yet left the human heart, shapes a creature in his likeness and image, but an imperfect creature, that sins, that steals, that kills and, not satisfied, despite knowing that man is weak, he is evil, punishes him for his faults, when, Name above all names, he should to interfere and separate the bestial fury from the human race — which always invents ways of reformulating itself and perpetuating itself for centuries of centuries. Is God also imperfect, sinful, criminal, and, to make matters worse, a sadist? A shallow explanation for such a hairy tangle of hypotheses is the shabby (and precise) free will: God gives man the gift of life; it is up to man to live his own life, God will not live it for him. It is as if our parents gave us a valuable gift and kept it in a glass jar, whose key only they have, and allowed us to enjoy such a gift only sparingly. Just as philosophy and God are in life, intertwined with the principle of the hegemony of our own will over what others expect of us — always based on discernment —, they are in death and in the way we face them.
“Hunting Time” (2020) may not go that far in its philosophical pretensions — nor is it obligated to do so — but, by the way, South Korean director Yoon Sung-hyun builds a drama with well-founded roots in terms of seeking explanations. for the most reprehensible conduct in man, extolling the crooked honor of a criminal who does not condescend to amateurs, on the contrary: he pursues them to the last consequences, not shying away from leaving a trail of destruction wherever he goes until he takes his mission to good term. To begin with, there are a few things to point out. In South Korea there is no such thing as ordinary citizens buying weapons at any time, much less keeping them at home, as seen in the United States. Weapons of any caliber are kept at the police station, and this is one of the reasons why shootings are so rare in the country — which does not necessarily mean that there is no violence there, carried out by individuals who are generally very skilled with knives, axes and scissors, as seen in productions such as “Parasite” (2019), the celebrated Oscar winner for Best Picture and Best Director for Bong Joon-ho. Despite being born and spending a few years of his life in America, Yoon attended film school in the land of his ancestors, that is, his script follows a hybrid logic, sometimes leaning towards the gratuitous violence of tarantine classics such as “Pulp Fiction: A Time for Violence” (1994), those of the “Kill Bill” franchise (2003) or even “Once Upon a Time… In Hollywood” (2019), either for the moderation of the style seen in productions no less visceral, but much less bloody, cases of “Trails of a Kidnapping” (2017), directed by Jang Hang-jun; “The Call” (2020), by Lee Chung-hyeon; or “Carter” (2022), brought to the screen by Jung Byung-gil.
The director opens his film showing a South Korea that survives the financial crisis that devastated the economy and generates daily popular demonstrations for labor rights. The atmosphere of abandonment, with long shots on deserted streets, especially at night, gives an exact idea of the dystopia that Yoon wants to talk about, when she introduces her characters. Jun-seok, the ex-convict played by Lee Je-hoon, tries to persuade his friends Jang-ho, played by Ahn Jae-hong, and Ki-hoon, played by Choi Woo-shik, to face yet another attempt to get rich. effortlessly, this time, according to him, without failures that would lead them to spend three years in jail, with the right to a lifetime of regrets and nightmares. Implicit in Yoon’s text is a certain innocence of its central character, who no longer recognizes his country and perhaps imagines that everything can get back on track before his friends give up on him — or not so much, since he knows that no one should be too far behind. willing to offer a job to a young man just out of prison. Even so, he makes others’ heads, using the argument that the police don’t mess with casino owners and vice versa. The problem is that now the road has a shortcut.
The director satisfactorily elaborates on the marginal nature of Jun-seok’s core, pulling out of his sleeve at opportune moments the interdependence of one for the other, forced to do each other kindnesses like taking part in the imbroglios that sooner or later will ruin their lives in the name of a friendship. dismal. Christopher Sean’s psychopath gives the narrative a sauce, until the end, something enigmatic, leaves the chance of a continuation in the air. And just like that, 135 minutes go by, all at once.
Movie: Hunting Time
Direction: Yoon Sung-hyun