The importance of being earnest
To be quick, BONG Joon-ho’s latest movie is artistically still above the average of Korean contemporary genre cinema but it doesn’t prevent Mother
to be a bit frustrating. I found very audacious the choice of BONG to treat his “Mother determined to save her child” pitch in a manga-like way close to his previous The Host
. Just like The Host
, the movie benefits from BONG’s ability to handle well its shifts in tone through editing and is shot in a masterful but never flashy way. But, whereas this “manga” choice didn’t affect much The Host
, it diminishes here Mother
’s impact. In a word like in a hundred, the character of the son is only used as a pretext for tons of (funny) jokes and never manages to exist in a deeper way. As a consequence, his relationship with his mother isn’t credible for the viewer. Nevertheless, the movie works a bit better at the end when it takes a more serious tone. But it’s too late.