MEMORIES OF MURDER殺人回憶

SilkRoad - - ENTERTAINMENT 娛樂 -

KOREAN DIRECTOR Bong Joon-ho faced a conundrum when he made his second feature, Memories of Murder: since it was based on South Korea’s most famous crime case of the 1980s, pretty much everyone in the audience would already know the ending – that the killer was never caught.

So how do you make a detective movie that people would still want to watch, even when they know that the detectives are doomed to failure?

The way Bong handled this challenge was an early sign that he would become one of his country’s most acclaimed directors. The first half of the film plays out like a somewhat conventional (although extremely well-made) crime film. The police in a small village desperately pursue clues about an elusive serial killer as more young women are killed. A detective from the big city arrives and pushes for a fact-based, scientific investigation rather than the instinct- driven clue chasing of the village police force. As the mood of the film shifts between black comedy and suspense, the audience gets pulled in, and wants more and more to see the killer caught and punished.

But when events take an even darker turn halfway through the film, something shifts in Bong’s approach. The detectives begin to change. The inner strengths and weaknesses of each character are slowly revealed. What started as a plot-based narrative, which pulls the audience along each twist and turn of the investigation, becomes a character-based story. Although we never lose our fervent wish to see the killer caught, what we get instead is a nuanced portrait of a country in the midst of profound change – the film is set near the end of Chun Doo-hwan’s authoritarian regime – and a main character, memorably played by Song Kang-ho, who hides an unexpected depth of emotion.

韓國導演奉俊昊執導第二部長片《殺人回憶》時,要面對一個考驗。《殺人回憶》的故事改編自1980 年代轟動南韓一時的罪案,每個觀眾入場前早已知道結局:兇手從未落網。

於是問題來了:在觀眾明知警方緝兇失敗的情況下,如何仍然能夠拍出一部引人入勝、令觀眾願意購票入場觀看的偵探片呢?

奉俊昊處理這個難題的方式,早就顯示出他將會成為南韓的一流導演。本片上半部講述小村裡有年輕女子接二連三被殺,村裡的警察為了破案而到處搜尋線索,卻被神出鬼沒的兇手弄得焦頭爛額。這一部分雖然拍得極出色,手法卻有點傳統。故事發展下去,一位來自大城市的幹探接手案件,他對於小村警察那種靠本能和靈感查案的手法不以為然,極力主張根據事實,以科學方法進行調查。電影在黑色喜劇及懸疑氣氛之間游移,觀眾卻在不知不覺間被吸引進去,急欲看見兇手就擒並接受應得的懲罰。

當電影過了一半,劇情變得更黑暗的時候,奉俊昊卻在處理手法上作了一點改變。這時觀眾可以見到警探開始跟之前有點不同,每個角色的長處與缺點逐漸浮現;電影起初以情節帶動,用曲折的查案過程將觀眾吸引住,後來卻變成以角色人物為主的故事。雖然觀眾依然熱切期待見到兇手被捕,可是影片卻藉這個故事細緻地描繪了韓國正在經歷重大改變時的面貌(故事發生於全斗煥政府極權統治即將結束的年代),以及主角一直深藏心底、令人意想不到的強烈情感。此角由宋康昊飾演,精湛演技令人印象難忘。

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