The Silenced (DVD) (First Press Limited Edition) (Korea Version) DVD Region 3
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YesAsia Editorial Description
This edition includes a 36-page photobook, postcards and special features (behind-the-scenes, cast interview, premiere and trailer).
|Product Title:||The Silenced (DVD) (First Press Limited Edition) (Korea Version) The Silenced (DVD) (首批限量版) (韓國版) The Silenced (DVD) (首批限量版) (韩国版) 京城学校：消えた少女たち(DVD) (初回限定版) (韓国版) 경성학교 : 사라진 소녀들 (DVD) (초회한정판) (한국판)|
|Also known as:||京城學校：消失的少女們 京城学校：消失的少女们|
|Artist Name(s):||Park Bo Young (Actor) | Uhm Ji Won (Actor) | Park So Dam (Actor) 朴寶英 (Actor) | 嚴智媛 (Actor) | Park So Dam (Actor) 朴宝英 (Actor) | 严智媛 (Actor) | Park So Dam (Actor) パク・ボヨン (Actor) | オム・ジウォン (Actor) | パク・ソダム (Actor) 박보영 (Actor) | 엄지원 (Actor) | 박소담 (Actor)|
|Director:||Lee Hae Yeong 李海英 李海英 Lee Hae Yeong 이해영|
|Place of Origin:||South Korea|
|Picture Format:||NTSC What is it?|
|Region Code:||3 - South East Asia (including Hong Kong, S. Korea and Taiwan) What is it?|
|Shipment Unit:||2 What is it?|
|YesAsia Catalog No.:||1047044339|
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YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features
Professional Review of "The Silenced (DVD) (First Press Limited Edition) (Korea Version)"
The setup for The Silenced certainly sounds familiar, revolving around a newcomer investigating mysterious disappearances and strange goings-on an a all-girl boarding school, conjuring visions of the Whispering Corridors franchise and a hundred other conventional modern Korean ghost films. Thankfully, the third feature from writer director Lee Hae-yeong does at least in part go down a different route, showing some of the inventiveness and defiance of conventions that characterised his award-winning 2006 debut Like a Virgin and his 2010 follow-up Foxy Festival. Unusually for this kind of genre mystery, the film had a strong showing at awards ceremonies, winning a number of nominations and prizes at the Grand Bell and Blue Dragon Awards in Korea.
Set in 1938 in Japan-occupied Korea, the film stars Park Bo-young (A Werewolf Boy) as Joo Ran, a young woman from a rich family suffering from a debilitating health condition, who is sent to a remote rural school in order to recuperate. Although she begins to feel stronger after settling in at the school, thanks in part to her new friendship with classmate friend Yeon Deok (Park So-dam, Steel Cold Winter), she soon starts to realise that something is not quite right, with several girls having gone missing of late, including one who strangely enough has the same name as her. Suffering from terrifying hallucinations and suspecting that the headmistress (Uhm Ji-won, Foxy Festival) may have something to do with the disappearances, Joo Ran starts an investigation, leading her to uncover a series of dark secrets.
The Silenced starts off treading a very worn path and very much in the manner of a traditional Korean ghost film, with an instantly recognisable school setting and young female cast, the usual mysteries and creepy visions, along with themes of bullying and isolation. Thankfully, although it does stick to this for most of the running time in terms of its structure, the film is a quietly impressive example of good storytelling, Lee Hae-yeong hitting all the right beats and subtly invoking slow-burn tension, using the Japanese colonial time period for an air of oppression and mistrust. Though the journey is familiar almost to a fault, the film does have a pleasingly different resolution, and while some may well see the last act twists coming thanks to some fairly obvious clues early on, there are a few welcome surprises en route to its satisfying conclusion.
Lee is clearly aiming for atmospheric chills rather than cheap frights, and the film performs well in this regard, feeling doom-laden and eerie throughout its efficiently short running time. There are a few scares thrown in here and there, and while none of these are particularly creative, they do provide the jolts required to maintain a sense of threat. Some great production values really help in this regard, and the film is a handsomely made affair, Lee doing a great job of shooting the local countryside and the ominously grand school for maximum disquieting effect. Special mention should also go to some very accomplished and unnerving use of lighting, for which Kim Min Jae deservedly won for a Grand Bell award for, and which gives the film's locations a wonderfully understated gothic and shadowy look.
Although the film can be a little confusing in places due to its character all wearing the exact same clothes and having very similar hairstyles, deliberately so, uniformity being a key theme, the cast are generally impressive, Park Bo-young showing more range than in the far more melodramatic A Werewolf Boy and making Joo Ran an engaging, if generic protagonist. Uhm Ji-won also does well and adds pathos to her ambiguous role, as does Park So Dan, who won Best New Actress at Busan Film Critics' Awards and was nominated at the Grand Bell Awards for performance.
Despite never really offering anything really new, The Silenced is nevertheless a very enjoyable piece of genre filmmaking, and another interesting offering from Lee Hae-yeong. While not at the level of the classic A Tale of Two Sisters, it's definitely one of the better films of its type from Korea in recent times, and even those understandably tired of the form should enjoy its well-judged menace.
by James Mudge - EasternKicks.com
Customer Review of "The Silenced (DVD) (First Press Limited Edition) (Korea Version)"
See all my reviews
December 12, 2017
This customer review refers to The Silenced (DVD) (Korea Version)
Another dark ominous domicile
In 1938 at the time of Japanese occupation Ju-ran (Bo-young Park) enters a large gothic type ‘cathedral’ for convalescence at Kyeongseong sanatorium, to cure her ill health of TB. Ju-ran’s father sends her there fearing the disease after her mother had died. The institution is sponsored by a Japanese military academy and run by an amiable but oddly reassuring headmistress (Ji-won Uhm) who instructs the girls in good morals, physical exercise and to take peculiar daily medications to cure their ills, and when returned to good health two are frequently selected for the academy, bestowed upon them by Japanese military benefactor Kenji (Hee-seop Shim). Ju-ran is also given a Japanese name of Shizuko, as also other ‘inmates’ having alternative Japanese names. Ju-ran, a modestly quiet girl depressingly self uncertain of her health, is befriended by Yeon-doek (So-dam Park) an aspiring athletic at the school’s outdoor gymnastics, who due to Ju-ran’s fragility and ‘weirdness’, wishes to encourage her health. Another girl Yuka (Ye-ji Kong) harbours grave misgivings of the disappearance of a boarder also with a Japanese name Shizuko, who was recently ‘selected’. Yuko becomes curious why Ju-ran is also named Shizuko and also oddly impervious to pain. Yuka criticises Yeon-deok’s sudden indifference of Shizuko when befriending Ju-ran. Shizuko, Yuka and Yeon-deok had become close friends to the point of love and Shizuko’s sudden disappearance disturbs Yuka how Shizuko was also unable to feel physical pain (like Ju-ran’s now duplicate symptoms) and that something is very wrong about the ‘selection’ process. Due to this Ju-ran becomes the object of bullying at a private ‘secret garden’ meeting place. Why is Ju-ran odd and impervious to pain? Reasons somewhat connected to the absent Shizuko?
Later in a classroom a girl Kihara (Bo-bi Joo) is stricken by an angered fit when Ju-ran innocently asks a negative question of the whereabouts of Shizuko. Kihara lunges at Ju-ran and attempts to strangle her, then suffering an horrendous fit. Ju-ran later encounters Kihara who apologies for her misdeed but cannot understand why she’d done so. With contestant medication administered by the headmistress, Ju-ran begins to get further odd side effects - hotness, heaviness in her chest and lesser feelings of pain - all familiar to Yeon-deok and Yuka; the same symptoms of Shizuko before disappearing. Also Ju-ran begins to see apparitions of Shizuko and other girls begin to go ‘missing’.
See all my reviews
December 12, 2017
This customer review refers to The Silenced (DVD) (Korea Version)
Ju-ran’s hazardous experience
As mystery deepens Yeon-deok, eavesdropping a heated conversation between the headmistress and Kenji, discovers a dark secret of what’s really happening to girls at the sanatorium, that horrifies her to the soul’s core.
By the introductory overhead camera shots of the mountainous Kyeongseong forest and Ju-ran entering the opulent decor of the large sanatorium boarding school - its wide view dark wooden floors menacing and desirous at the same instant - you’re in no doubt that a rich, nostalgic K-horror awaits. Nostalgic by K-movie motifs of Whispering Corridors red gob stopper ‘treat’, an early indicator of the ‘Yeo-go-kuei-dam’ school horror series and by the visually rich gothic atmosphere, The Silenced is logical horror shifting genre type. But even though considering the Japanese occupation setting, I never suspected such an excessive outcome (not Yonggary...but). On the onset all this could suggest a haunting psychological out-of-comfort zone theatric by Ju-ran’s depressing ill health. But the ritual display of ‘flower’ medication and Ju-ran’s suspicions running riot due to her unusual medicinal ‘side effects’, an increasing biohazard picture ensues. The ‘ghost’ elements are progressive and logical considering what such medication would be doing to the ‘selected’ girl’s psychical minds, the supernatural juxtaposed by chemical nerve invasion. There are interesting subtle aspects, too, by Ju-ran and Yeon-deok’s relationship that amidst a strange environment the two girls, when naturally relating to one another at the lake scene, Ju-an’s ‘ill health’ is somewhat ‘cured’ - she doesn't cough up blood suddenly - to display that maybe the rich natural environment and friendship, the sense of freedom/belonging shifted Ju-an’s ill fixed mind towards happiness and true health.
But that sweet subtlety is fleeting as an inevitable darker end awaits, and if having no idea what’s to come, will surprise, shock (and most likely bring natural mirth to certain bits) by the excessive conclusion. The Silenced is a very good movie - if you like mystery K-horror types (Whispering Corridors, Yoga, Two Moons, The Cat and the like) you’ll like this. Albeit awarded honour as been bestowed, much rightful credit to the acting and screen play. The Silenced is an ominous theme that leans to satire and symbol (Ji-won’s ‘hanging’ motif suggestive of the Christ tabular motif in ‘Haunters’) and screen writer Hae-young Lee who gave us ‘Arahan’ its good to get.