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Movie: Tae Guk Gi: The Brotherhood of War (2004)
Genre: , ,
Director: Je-kyu Kang
Date of Release: 24 Sep 2004
Duration: 140
IMDB Rating: 8.1/10
Movie review score

About Tae Guk Gi: The Brotherhood of War (2004)

He realized how much he has wrongly alienated his big brother. The amazing war sequences aside, the dramatic elements shine out as well, supported by an amazing cast of talented actors. Recently, thanks to the worldwide success of ‘Taegukgi’ and 1999’s blockbuster ‘Shiri,’ Director Kang Je-Gyu has signed an agreement with Hollywood’s own powerhouse, CAA, to produce his next film in America. Since it’s not my favourite genre or topic of interest, I can’t say I loved it like a brother, but was sufficiently satisfied with it given what it is. Yes, it’s quite melodramatic. But director does not linger there – in fact, the pace of the storyline of “Taegukgi” (South Korean name for their national flag) is more than tight, it’s one event after another, never stops. And then it blew me away with its depiction of war and all of its complexities. Eventually, these two brothers – once bound by a love for family – find themselves at odds within this new brotherhood of war, and the pressures to prove one another continue to exact heavier and heavier tolls as the war escalates. The film was very well received (a blockbuster) at home. The film’s scope is grand, dealing with the far more intimate themes of family, brotherhood, and personal responsibility when Director Kang Je-Gyu could have easily opted for banging the drum of nationalism. Just remember to keep the tissues close by for this one. It features some of the best close range combat scenes….. As a result, patriotism has become the unlikeliest casualty. This thing… it’s just amazing. the battle scenes are very reminiscent of the opening half hour and end battle of ryan as they hold back no punches. At its core, ‘Taegukgi’ is the story of two brothers, a strikingly poignant analogy for the entire North Korea / South Korea dilemma. You understand how one brother would spend 50 years trying to find the other. it makes you realize that combat is one of the most horrifying of all human experiences. The film is loosely connected snapshots of the course of the war, beginning right before the invasion, then several weeks later before jumping about a month at a time to certain key events. Taegukgi does a great job putting a part of that history on screen for the world to see. By the way, “Tae Guk Gi” is the name of the South Korean flag. I went to see it on “Can Day” here in Austin… where you donate 3 cans of food to the homeless and see any movie you want. Once a man has crossed over and embraced wartime madness, can he ever truly find a way out? The older of the two, hoping to win a medal and ticket home for his younger brother, begins going on every suicide mission offered. it took longer than i expected for the action to start but when it does it does not let off till the end of the film. Jin-tae tries to save him without any success, and then is also drafted into the army by his own wish, trying to protect his young brother. Apart from this minor flaw it is two and a half hours of adrenalin pumping experience…… Its not perfect but its a kick in the pants. The movie started with the life of two brothers before the war, a life that was almost perfect until the war shatters all. If you like your modern-ish day war films, and specifically if you liked SAVING PRIVATE RYAN, then there’s very little doubt that TaeGukGi will impress.

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The two and half hours felt like 1.5 hour when you were drawn into the intensity of the film. When North Korea invades the South, the family escapes to a relative’s house in the country, but along their journey, Jin-seok is forced to join the army to fight in the front, and Jin-tae enlists too to protect his young brother. If you thought the Omaha Beach sequence in Saving Private Ryan was amazing, prepare to be blown away, this movie is about to rewrite history books. “SPR” seems to moralize too much, no flaws, just hero’s. The result is the characters came off plain and two-dimensional. (very end of the movie) So if you like the Asian approach to values and great war movies this must be your pick number ONE. This movie was well above my expectations. It has all the usual elements of a war movie, the characters trying to get home, the personal struggles, the depiction of the enemy as heartless and souless. Besides this I would like to point out it’s very interesting to see JSA and Welcome to Dongmakgol. Those two films (in addition to Taegukgi) give an even better insight in how the (South-) Koreans experience(d) the Korean war and the effect it had and in some way still has on the people of Korea. The two leads are engaging: Jang Dong-gun is the big brother (he was detective Kim in “Nowhere To Hide” 1999) and Won Bin is the younger brother (he’s a young popular TV star in South Korea). The multitude of extras for the battle scenes is part of a grand production with effective cinematography, score and sound effects enabling the film depictions being devastatingly real. Many directors tried to make a movie that shows both sides of the conflict, but all of them failed. So I guess that wasn’t a very patriotic thing to say. This, however, puts a strain on his relationship with his brother and those in the platoon. I felt lost and wished there had been more explanation. And believe me, I have seen a lot. As a “foreigner”, I felt a real lack of emotion and feeling from the subtitles. com/display. The sound and score were very well done and fitting. However, this movie takes the spot as number 1. Never before have I been so moved by a film in my entire life. Just as Saving Private Ryan spoke so resounding to its audience, Taegukgi does the same for its own. I was very surprised, that the director showed also the crime that his own government committed to their own people at this time. Title (Brazil): “A Irmandade da Guerra” (“The Brotherhood of the War”) When North Korea invades the South, two brothers are forcibly drafted into the army. this aspect of it tied with the relationship of the two brothers makes the film, in my eyes i would even say that i prefer this film to saving private ryan. It is to South Korea’s credit that they could make such an important film for future generations. The haunting thing about this movie is that the enemy is your own people and they speak your own language and share the same ancestors and genetics. It is perfect in every aspect: every scene is well done with sense and attention,really catching story , history facts…. I grew up with Sam Fuller, Peckinpah, Spielberg and the war films of Hollywood. I am not Korean, so I cannot say the general feeling that Korean people had when they watched this movie, or if everything was exactly how it happened, but in my personal opinion as an outsider, this movie is very good and well recreated, showing what I imagined when I read about the Korean war. I understand the release of this film in South Korea coincided with the fiftieth anniversary of the country’s truce with North Korea. The all movie draws changes of both brothers and their attitude to war and life. I’m sure that had I better grasp of the history of the war I would have understood the events better. Apparently, director Kang Je-Gyu (SHIRI) enjoyed SPR too, as its influence on his Korean war film TAEGUKGI is impossible to deny.

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The film made me think of what my parents and grandparents lived through. the movie is far superior to Platoon or Saving private Ryan…… Such is the complex, ever-changing battleground of writer/director Kang Je-Gyu’s ‘Taegukgi: The Brotherhood of War. No one should be judged for what they do during war – circumstances in war time can change one’s psyche and outlook. cgi? I’m not a big fan of war films, unless the war in question was at least a couple hundred years ago or somewhere in the future, or the stars – but I did enjoy SAVING PRIVATE RYAN, if “enjoy” is the best word to use for such an experience. id=19054 Possible Spoilers*** First of all, major praise goes to Jang Dong Gun’s riveting performance. As a Korean, this movie was very emotionally moving and touching. He learns that he is a good soldier, one with a talent for inspiring others as well as an unanticipated thirst for killing the enemy. The problem is that during their plan to scape, Jin-Seok’s is forcibly conscripted into the South Korean army. every scene in this movie is brutally realistic… These were done absolutely tremendous and it is far better than any American film and with deep storyline which almost made me cry you will get the full-value experience. The layers of plot and the ‘all encompassing’ facets/effects of war included in the mix may be too much for some – somehow, 2 hours 20 mins. A BRILLIANT FILM. The film will just shake you to the core. The story of two brothers growing apart during wartime may seem a bit typical (and it would have been), but the director really takes his time getting into the story what results in a great compassion created by the viewer. Korea has remained divided for decades since and is subject to the possibility of a new war at any time. SHIRI was the South Korean film that probably did more than any other to bring the country’s cinematic new wave into being, and especially into the field of view of the rest of the world at large. It is triumph of humanity over war ….. The Korean War turned brother against brother based on little more than time and place, conviction, or happenstance. Some people (mainly Westerners) think this movie was “over-dramatic”, but it’s actually a part of korean custom, culture and history. See it for yourself, and believe it. Other noteworthy war-related films: “Sergeant York” (directed by Howard Hawks 1941), with Gary Cooper’s incomparable portrayal of WWI American hero Alvin C. York. Young brother escaped burning fate, as he’s about to get back home to mother and family, he learned of his brother at the opposing war front. Tae Guk Gi, besides documenting the hideous reality of being dragged into fighting against common sense, is also the moving story of two brothers and their immediate family, of separation physically and emotionally; some of the over-the-top emoting may seem extreme, but so are the situations, and the film cunningly details what happens when governments are changed at the whim of those currently in power. I knew I was in for something as soon as I saw the archaeological dig of a battlefield starting the film as a grandfather’s story is slowly drawn out. This 2.5 hour long movie was wonderful! all in all this film was definitely worth the wait since hearing of it on IMDb, i recommend this for anyone, even if war films are not your usual taste the human aspect will keep u watching. Sigh! I have not known much about the Korean War that took place at the beginning of the 1950’s, but that was a history lesson I will not easily forget. This movie makes you feel like your on the battlefield with these soldiers. The best war movie ever, period.

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