Watch Samaritan Girl
- 1 hr 37 min
Samaritan Girl is a poignant and heartbreaking drama film from South Korea, directed by Kim Ki-duk. The film follows the story of two young girls, Yeong-jin (played by Kwak Ji-min) and her best friend, Yeo-jin (played by Han Yeo-reum), who turn to prostitution to pay off a large debt owed by Yeo-jin's father. The two girls embark on a journey of self-discovery, love, and loss that leads them to question their own moral values, the morality of the society they live in and the meaning of human existence. The plot of the movie follows Yeong-jin, a talented and intelligent high school student, who also doubles as a prostitute to earn money for herself and Yeo-jin. Yeong-jin acts as the "samaritan girl" of the title, helping desperate men fulfill their desires, allowing them to repent and absolve themselves of their sins. In turn, Yeong-jin believes that she is doing a noble and humane act by offering salvation to these men. But things go awry when Yeo-jin begins to develop feelings for a client and tries to escape the sex trade, leading to a tragic end that changes Yeong-jin's life forever. The film is a haunting and powerful exploration of the themes of innocence, morality, and the human condition. At its core, Samaritan Girl is a meditation on grief and the consequences of our actions. Director Kim Ki-duk masterfully combines visceral imagery with strikingly poetic and philosophical sequences to create a film that is both deeply touching and intellectually engrossing. The performances of the cast are also noteworthy, particularly that of Kwak Ji-min who plays Yeong-jin with a searing intensity that is both captivating and moving. Similarly, Han Yeo-reum adds a layer of vulnerability and tenderness to her portrayal of Yeo-jin, and Lee Eol delivers an emotionally charged performance as the father of Yeo-jin, who is struggling with the consequences of his actions. The cinematography and visual style of the film are also noteworthy, with lush and evocative imagery that enhances the emotional impact of the story. From the stark and vividly lit brothels to the breathtaking vistas of the countryside, the film employs a vast aesthetic spectrum while always staying true to its central themes. One of the key strengths of the movie is how it refrains from explicitly condemning or advocating for the actions of its characters. Instead, it presents a complex and nuanced exploration of the human psyche, showcasing how individuals can be driven to make unthinkable choices when they are desperate and faced with difficult circumstances. The film is never judgmental but instead invites its viewers into the characters' psychological landscape, allowing them to reflect and empathize with the characters. Overall, Samaritan Girl is a timeless and poignant masterpiece of South Korean cinema that deserves to be watched by anyone who appreciates powerful storytelling and evocative cinema. It is a film that will linger in your mind long after the end credits have rolled, and one that will continue to offer new insights and emotions with every viewing.