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The Isle (2000)

Cast: Kim Yu-seok, Seoh Jung
Director: Kim Ki-Duk
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Rating: Not Rated
Studio: First Run Features
Genre: Drama, Foreign, Korea, Erotica
Running Time: 89 min.
Languages: Korean
Subtitles: English
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Recalling both the erotic tension and the surrealist imagery of Woman of the Dunes, Kim Ki-duk's film is set near a remote lake where men come far and wide to fish on anchored rafts. Running a little bait-and-tackle shop is the earthy -- almost feral -- young lass Hee-jin (Seoh Jung), who sometimes sells herself for a price to horny fishermen. On one raft is the morose youth Hyun-shik (Kim Yu-seok), who Hee-jin has quietly taken a shine to after saving him from a suicide attempt. His ham-fisted advances are rejected, but after a second try at suicide, in which he puts fishing hooks in his mouth, she nurses him back to health. Soon, a freakily-intense relationship builds between the two in which the jealous Hee-jin starts to brutally dispatch with any competition. This film was screened at the 2000 Cannes Film Festival. ~ Jonathan Crow, All Movie Guide

From the pages of Film Comment and Cinema Scope to festivals in Berlin, Venice, and this year, Cannes, fans of Korean cinema are arguing, often furiously, about Kim Ki-duk. Jonathan Marlow talks with the director about, among many other things, how the "Kim Ki-duk style" plays in the US. Full Article >>

Special Features:

  • Interviews with the Director and Actors
  • Behind the Scenes footage
  • Music Video
  • Theatrical Trailer

GreenCine Member Reviews

MWhelan by JWhelan January 14, 2007 - 11:20 PM PST
0 out of 1 members found this review helpful
Beautiful imagery, powerfully acted with virtually no dialogue from either the two primary characters. Tense plot keeps this unusual and artistic film surprisingly watchable. Some people may find the exteme subject matter and graphic imagery very disturbing.

revenge of the lake prostitutes... by Sanjer November 14, 2005 - 1:26 PM PST
0 out of 5 members found this review helpful
... is what this film should be called. I really liked it, well worth a rental if you like messed up Korean movies, this is no exception. The script, dialogue is good... there is some strange fish mutilation which bothered me more than any of the realistic but of course fake human gore... funny how that is. The girls in this movie are pretty hot, but the lead role is kind of psycho, but very well dressed and groomed... interesting combination.

And now for something completely different. by squad June 17, 2004 - 7:16 PM PDT
10 out of 16 members found this review helpful
Tired of the conventional? Come dwell beyond the pale for awhile. Here humans and fishes experience the same, being hooked, suffocated, and discarded. There is only elemental pain and attempt to escape in sexual release, and death. The setting is a calm lake with pretty little floating fish shacks. The enterprise is simple enough with room service typical of any sophisticated getaway (food to sex). Were it not for the mad and sensual "fishwife" and her guilt-crazy beau, the setting was a meditation on the pleasures of a typical blood-sports outing. What could be more elementally satisfying than to catch your own food free from the cares of town plus, as I said, room service. Having in a previous "incarnation" been there and done that myself in the oriental style and here at home in the conventional sportsman style, I found the film true to experience, except of course the grisly bits. Even the prostitution rang true, taken as it were in a light hearted way. So the draw here was two-fold: fish camp memories, and a really bizarre twist beyond any imagined experience fortunately. No political correctness here, none. Leave your sensibilities at the door. God pity man and fish alike. Sometimes twisted is good, clearing your head as it were. This film does that in spades.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 6.45)
129 Votes
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