14:17 - 26th March 2013, by Calum Waddell

Desire to Kill

Described on the DVD box as "Old Boy in a hospital" this Korean oddity (which is also known as Enemy at the Dead End) is weird, wild and completely wacky. Certainly, comparing it to the more studied theatrics of Park Chan-wook is unfair, because anyone expecting an epic Shakespearian shocker such as Old Boy or Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance will be disappointed with Desire to Kill. Rather, this is a thoroughly comedic bout of carnage that is remarkable in its simplicity: a man suffering from amnesia slowly regains his memory and discovers that the gent in the bed next to him is the person responsible for his wife's death. Inevitably, chaos ensues - and the end result is frequently very, very funny.

Reminding us of why Korean cinema is considered home to some of the most inventive and outlandish contemporary cinematic efforts, Desire to Kill should please anyone looking for a little divergence from the same old, same old. Helmed by four filmmakers, too many cooks do spoil the broth a little (the tone is all over the place), but this is nonetheless a stylishly realised and compulsive watch that effectively mixes belly laughs and some incredibly brutal set pieces. The biggest problem for Desire to Kill is going to be finding its audience, given that generic classification is a tough cookie for what amounts to an oddball, but often violent, black comedy. So take heed: don't let this one slip you by.

Bloody and bizarre - but containing more than a few belly laughs - we recommend that you harbour some desire to pick this up...
SCORE: 4/5
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