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RUNNING WILD - Director's Cut


Director: Park Jin-pyo
Starring: Kwon Sang-woo, Yoo Ji-tae, Son Byung-ho
Rating: M18 (Violence)
Year Made: 2006




- Trailer
- Music Video




Languages: Korean
Subtitles: English/Chinese
Aspect Ratio: 16x9 Letterbox
Sound: Dolby Digital 2.0, Dolby Digital 5.1
Running Time: 2 hrs 24 mins
Region Code: 3
Distributor: Comstar Entertainment




JANG Do-young (KWON Sang-woo) is a hot-blooded homicide detective who has lost faith in the law. OH Jin-woo (YOO Ji-tae) is an elite prosecutor. Learning that they’re after the same target, they decide to team up. As they get deeper into the investigation, a huge conspiracy awaits them, in which YOO Kang-jin (SON Byung-ho), boss of the Kuryong Family is involved. Feeling threatened YOO blackmails JANG’s family and pulls to get OH off the case. Now the unavoidable battle begins between two men and the Kingpin of the criminal world.


Do you believe justice prevail in this world or the society around us?

Perhaps the answer is a no according to this gritty crime thriller directed by Kim Sung-su. Kim a protégé of the renowned Park Chan-wook whose vengeance trilogy (“Old Boy”, “Sympathy for Lady Vengeance”) is well known for its gore and violence shines here in his directorial debut. Roping in character actor, Yoo Ji-Tae and heart-throb, Kwong Sang Woo (best known as the faithful lover from “Stairways to Heaven” and “Volcano High”), “Running Wild” is about a prosecutor and a cop joining forces to arrest an influential triad member.

Kwong shedding off his clean-cut image turns in a tremendously heart-feel performance as a no-holds-barred, ill-tempered cop, Jang. Jang is a sad character to begin with, beneath his tough as nails image, he has a terminally ill mother in the hospital and a stepbrother who was mysteriously killed after being just released from jail. Apparently, Jang is a major breakthrough role for Kwong. Spotting a less than charming moustache and a shaggy dog hairstyle, there are many action and emotional sequences in the movie that requires Kwong to showcase his acting bits instead of relying on his usual lovey-dovey performances in romance dramas. You might argue that Kwong’s performance is overly exaggerated. But I guess if the script calls for it, Kwong has rightfully fulfilled the requirements or in this case, maybe Kim’s expectations.

Pairing off Jang is a prosecutor played by Yoo Ji-Tae, a no-nonsense firm believer of justice and a strict follower of the rules set by the judicial system. He is a workaholic who has little interest in salvaging his failing marriage and is deep set to nab his targeted criminals. So when these two characters meet, sparks fly and blood ensured.

To label “Running Wild” as ‘hard-boiled action’ is sort of over the top, instead it plods along with an uneven pacing, intermission with some typical combat gang fights. A reminiscent of the typical HK triad movies in the 80’s. And of course, you need to suspend your belief in the fact that Jang seems to possess extraordinary immortality powers despite sustaining countless injuries.

Unlike his master’s love for shock, Kim opted less on visual flair although at times, he relied on shaky camera moves to accentuate a sense of emergency. In a way, it is shot vaguely similar to the style of the hit HK crime hit thriller “Infernal Affairs”. It smells strongly of masculine masochism, on the other hand Lee wants the audience to connect to Jang’s inner world as well. The female audience might appreciate Jang’s more awkward, quiet side with his faithful partner played by Eom Ji-won in the movie’s more subtle moments.

This dvd which contains the director’s cut at 144 minutes delves deeper into the relationship factor of the characters. Although critics in Korea savaged it when it was first released in the beginning of 2006, “Running Wild” is still a recommended compelling crime thriller worthy of your time. Be intoxicated by Kwong and Yoo’s performances, “Running Wild” will slowly absorb you to the world of men’s evil sins.

After the credits rolled, tell me, do you believe justice prevail in this world or the society around us?


The music video for the theme song and trailer is the only extras included in this Code 3 DVD.


Both Dolby Digital 2.0 and 5.1 are available. However, there are only a handful of action sequences that truly make use of the surround speakers. Basically, the former is sufficient to bring out the movie on the whole.

The movie is shot mostly on dark tones with an intentional grittiness to it. The transfer here successfully brought out the sharpness of the colours although some of the night shots betrayed the lack of light sufficiency.



Review by Linus Tee



Alternative Opinion:

The movie review by our columnist

Other titles from Comstar:

. Merry Christmas

. You are my Sunshine

. My Girl & I

. Half Light

. Mur (The Wall)

. Mrs Henderson Presents

. Hidden

. The Descent

. Sympathy for Lady Vengeance

. A Season for Love

. Horror Theater Series 2

. Horror Theater Series I

. Capturing the Friedmans

. The Wig

. A Wicked Tale

. As It Is In Heaven

. When I Turned 9



This review is made possible with the kind support from Comstar


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