CJ Entertainment // 2011 // 121 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // August 4th, 2012
Someone came into my...hindsight.
What do you do when you've been a lethal enforcer for the mob for so long and realize it's time to detach? Well, if you're like Doo-heon, an infamous cartel bad-ass, you take up cooking! Through with the criminal life, Doo-heon begins honing his food-slinging craft and in cooking class meets a like-minded young lady. The two hit it off, even going so far as to hatch a plan of opening a restaurant together. Then the cartel head dies leaving the clans in a state of tenuousness and Doo-heon at the center of the approaching storm. Ultimately, he finds himself sucked back into the violence -- and his one-time business partner isn't all she's pretending to be.
Not bad. A bit bloated and taking a while to build up momentum, Hindsight gets moving in its second hour and things start to click. The first hour is all setup, establishing the power brokers in the mob and getting our antihero ready for his attempt at a straight life; which, as we know, always works out perfectly awesome. I'm not going to lie to you: this is a slooooowwww burn. The time devoted to Doo-heon's cultivation of the relationship with his cooking class love interest is necessary, but the mileage the filmmakers get out of the lengthy foreplay does not equal the time invested. I found the chicanery of the mob bosses to be way more interesting.
The betrayals and switchbacks start to pay off in the second half, and so too does the action. Beware the synopsis on the back of the disc case: Hindsight isn't action-packed or pulse-pounding. The film is more interested in the gray area of morality and the choices that duty-bound characters have to make, often times counter to their emotions. Sprinkled among this weightier stuff, we get a dose of hand-to-hand combat (including a nicely executed piece of combat in the kitchen using pots and pans), some gunfire, and an okay car chase scene.
In the end, Hindsight strives to answer the question: Can people who have made a life out of doing bad things, completely escape the chickens that are coming home to roost? There's no easy answer, but the film takes a swing at it with skill. Recommended for the drama, not the pyrotechnics.
Solid disc, starting with a clean standard definition 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer, a Dolby 5.1 Surround mix (Korean, with English subtitles), and four making-of featurettes.
Not Guilty. Stick with it, and Hindsight delivers a tasty delicacy.
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Scales of Justice
Studio: CJ Entertainment
* 1.78:1 Anamorphic
* Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (Korean)
Running Time: 121 Minutes
Release Year: 2011
MPAA Rating: Not Rated