Unlike most revenge-oriented plots, which fill the viewer with a heroic feeling, Oldboy is filled with a special feeling: a feeling of condemnation and horror. Not only because of its tragic ending, but also because of the uneasy and irritating atmosphere that is felt in all moments of the movie.
In this movie, the decision to take revenge is not pleasant and attractive, but frightening. Thus, when we reach the end, we are shocked by the fact that the most insignificant and clichéd character of the whole movie is actually the most important of them all.
Oldboy starts by creating a turbulent, anxious, and unstable atmosphere, and gradually uses all the available factors and elements to enhance the effect, as if we were dealing with a mysterious and psychological movie. A captivating narrative that makes the final blow of the movie seems very effective. Although Chan-Wook’s inspirations are clear, from Hitchcock’s vertigo to Tarantino’s work, Chan-wook has combined them all with the characteristics of Asian cinema in such a way that the result is completely new and transformative experience.
As a result, the movie, which is at first a logic-free action, aims at your heart with its deep emotions. The first setting, the prison, is introduced as the symbolic space of the mind of “Dae-su Oh”. The prison motivates him to take revenge, and this is the goal and belief that grows in his subconscious.
In parallel, his instinct is gradually inflamed and strengthened until the desire for revenge and the instinct become a single and common element, ready to be satisfied. When he comes out of prison, we enter the second setting of the movie which is the atmosphere of modern and civilized South Korean society, which allows him to satisfy his instincts and take revenge. Even though Oldboy seems to be a deconstructive movie about morality, it takes a critical look at the problem of the intrusion of power into the privacy of the individual.
In this movie, the character of “Woo-Jin Lee” is a symbol of dominance and power, a person who relies on his power to change someone’s fate and make decisions for them. He also uses advanced listening devices and other equipment to learn all the details of his life that were once connected to him. He crosses all existing red lines and has sex with his sister in a situation that is completely contrary to society, and even more unscrupulously tries to put “Dae-su Oh” in a similar situation.
Woo-Jin Lee, as a symbol of power, takes revenge on the lower strata of society. But what he avenges are the very thoughts that dominate this class and that lead to the death of his sister. The death of his sister can be seen as the beginning of moral death in Eastern societies. This morality has overshadowed the original and historical civilization of the East through the investment system and the invasion of Western culture.
Oldboy is the life story of people who have reached the point of emptiness. In this movie “Park Chan-Wook” shows people who are committed to nothing. This lack of commitment to oneself and society is in direct contrast to the customs and traditions of East Asian societies, especially South Korea, which has the ancient symbol of yin and yang on its flag.
In cinema and in the line of movement of ordinary stories, it is rare that the negative character of the story becomes a lasting tragedy in our minds at the end of the movie. “Woo-Jin Lee” put a big question in our minds during the movie and pressed us to answer it in a sick way, and causes us to honestly express our hatred for this character. Nevertheless, when reality comes out, we are forced to forgive him. What is even sadder is that “Dae-su Oh” does not forgive himself, and this makes the viewer’s grief more lasting than imagined. Oldboy can be summed up in one sentence, regardless of its external and internal symbols:
Sometimes a person’s past brings itself to the present in such a way that we have no choice but to revisit the past and pay for it. Let’s Take care of ourselves now because in the future this will be our past.
Oldboy ending explained:
By the movie’s conclusion, we discover that Dae-su has actually been living with his adult daughter ever since the night he escaped from prison. Lee Woo-jin, however, never elaborates on what actually transpired with Dae-wife. su’s In one way or another, it appears likely that Dae-wife su’s passed away while he was incarcerated.
Did the hypnosis work at the end of Oldboy?
He laughs maniacally when he hugs Mi-do since he knows the secret and will have to keep it forever. The hypnosis didn’t work.
Does Oldboy have a plot twist?
Oldboy, a 2003 film, is well known for its horrific third act narrative twist, but this South Korean neo-noir masterpiece has one moment that is much worse. Oldboy’s climactic plot revelation, which debuted in 2003, is considered among the most unsettling movie twists ever, but behind-the-scenes video reveals that another moment is actually worse.
is Oldboy a good movie? Is it a masterpiece?
One of the most gruesome, breath-taking, and excellent revenge films ever produced. Particularly Choi’s performance as Dae-su Oh, the main protagonist, the acting is superb. All the players were excellent, but his was the most emotionally charged (all you need to do is see the infamous squid scene).
Who is the villain in Oldboy?
The primary antagonist in the 2003 South Korean film Oldboy is Lee Woo-jin.