Watch Memories of Murder
- 2 hr 7 min
Memories of Murder is a 2003 South Korean crime thriller directed by Bong Joon-ho. The movie is inspired by the true events of the Hwaseong serial murder case that took place in Gyeonggi Province, South Korea in the late 1980s. The film follows the investigation conducted by two detectives, Park Doo-man (Song Kang-ho) and Cho Yong-koo (Kim Sang-kyung), into the brutal serial killings of women in the rural town of Hwaseong. The detectives, along with their team of officers, struggle to bring the killer to justice as the murders continue, creating fear and chaos in the community.
At the beginning of the movie, two detectives, Park and Cho, who are vastly different in personalities and methods, arrive in Hwaseong to investigate the first in a series of murders of young women. The murders are particularly heinous, as the victims are all found raped and strangled, with their undergarments serving as the killer's distinctive signature.
Park, a boisterous and impulsive detective, relies on his instincts and rough interrogations to solve the case, while Cho is a quieter, more methodical investigator who uses forensic evidence to build his case. The two detectives clash frequently, and their methods prove ineffectual as the murders continue. The pressure to solve the case mounts as the killings escalate, and the town becomes consumed with fear and suspicion.
As the investigation progresses, new suspects emerge, but the detectives struggle to link them to the murders. Park becomes increasingly abusive in his interrogations, while Cho's methodical approach leads him to question his own sanity. The mystery deepens when the detectives bring in a self-proclaimed psychic (Roe-ha Kim) to aid in the investigation, whose visions appear to provide specific details regarding the killer's identity.
The film seamlessly blends suspense with humor, offering a glimpse into the detective's personal lives with quirky, wholesome moments mixed with the brutality of the murders. Memories of Murder also examines the socio-political landscape of late '80s South Korea, as tensions between the police and population boil over, and corruption taints the investigation.
The cinematography of Memories of Murder is a standout element of the film. Bong masterfully frames each scene, often showcasing the serene beauty of the South Korean countryside juxtaposed with the horrors of the murders. The film's soundtrack is also an essential component, with music used sparingly, but effectively, to build tension and emotion.
Although, like many true crime stories, Memories of Murder's ending is unresolved, the narrative offers its own hauntingly stunning interpretation of the killer's identity. The film's final moments encapsulate the desperation and frustration of the investigation, while also providing a poignant reflection on the cycle of violence and the effect it has on both the victims and investigators.
In conclusion, Memories of Murder is an intense and nuanced crime thriller that offers a unique perspective into the psychology of detectives working to solve a serial killer case. From the stunning cinematography to the haunting soundtrack, Bong Joon-ho's direction creates a film that will leave audiences on edge from start to finish. The incredible performances from Song Kang-ho and Kim Sang-kyung elevate the film to another level, driving home the emotional impact of the events on the small town and their inhabitants. Overall, Memories of Murder is an unforgettable cinematic experience.
Memories of Murder is a 2003 crime movie with a runtime of 2 hours and 7 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 8.1 and a MetaScore of 82.