Challenging and complex, both in its formalism and its thematic ideals, Ermek Shinarbaev's Revenge is a rigorous meditation on the grandiose effects of trauma, detailing the perpetual nature of violence and vengeance through the prism of a young Korean boy, who from an early age was raised to avenge the death of his father's first son. Spanning decades, Ermiek Shinarbaev's Revenge is an existential study of humanity's obsessive nature, being a film which manages to encapsulate the short-sighted effects of emotional-based decision-making through its story. Displacement and cultural conflict are larger themes built into this young boy's story, as Ermiek Shinarbaev's Revenge was one of the first films to exhibit the Korean diaspora in Central Asia; an inciting incident of sorts, which sets the stage for the young boy's obsessive desire for revenge. The aesthetic of Shinarbaev's film evokes an other-worldly quality, cranking up the contrast in a way that evokes the spiritual aspects of its thematic ideals. The way light interacts with the earth itself and the characters of this story are singular in execution; with Shinarbaev's muted dramatic style being perfectly counter-balanced by this impressionistic cinematic choice. Draped heavily in taoist philosophy, Revenge is not a comfortable or easy watch, yet it is a rewarding one once the credits roll, crafting a grandiose tapestry of the evil that lurks in every day life among humanity.
Love of all things cinema brought me here.