Tell Me Something

Starring: Suk-Kyu Han, Eun-Ha Shim and Hang-Seon Jang
Tartan Asia Extreme
RRP: 19.99
TVD 3553
Certificate: 18
Available 27 March 2006

Police Detective Cho is under investigation by Internal Affairs after money covering his sick mother's considerable medical expenses is paid into his account by a criminal. Rather than being suspended pending an investigation, Cho finds himself heading a team attempting to solve a number of gristly serial killings. Black sacks are being discovered around the city of Seoul which contain body parts that don't match. Cho learns there is a pattern to the discoveries. Another, more significant, clue leads him to a female museum curator who has dated all of the victims, and he is forced to protect her in his own house as the killer appears to draw closer...

This Korean release from Tartan Asia Extreme is essentially a police investigation which could sit comfortably on any terrestrial station if it wasn't for the gruesome body parts and the general short-sightedness shown for subtitled films. In other words, in wouldn't look out of place on late night Channel 4. It is only a horror in the loosest sense, having much more the feel of a police procedural.

That doesn't mean Tell Me Something is not entertaining. I enjoyed the fast pace, particularly in the first third of the film, and the characters of Cho and his right-hand man are suitably chalk and cheese but share a strong working bond. The calm, straight-talking boss and his older ever-eating sensitive slob of a sidekick.

I must admit to having identified the perpetrator pretty early on in the film, but it didn't spoil my enjoyment because the running-time seemed to ebb away as quickly as a lunch break. The film tag line ("Some Crimes Are Best Left Unsolved") is just simply crazy. Where's the justification of giving the end away before the film has even started?! The nonsensical reaction of Cho when he realises he's been duped is choosing to end the plot with the protagonist acting out of character for the first time. Rolling around on the floor in anguish is apparently preferable to stopping a plane leaving the country; watch the conclusion and you'll understand what I'm blathering on about. Also, Cho is told by his chief that he is under investigation, but if he solves this case it could get him off the hook. Is this how they do things in Korea? I doubt it.

So an enjoyable viewing experience if you can ignore the holes.

Ty Power

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