Beat (1997)

June 6, 2002 • Film, Korea, Reviews

[dir: Kim Sung-soo; writer: Huh Young-man]

Cast: Jung Woo-sung, Ko So-young, Lim Chang-jung, Yu Oh-seong


From the first frame you know you’re in for a fast, exciting ride through teen angst, true love and heroic bloodshed. Min and Taesoo are best friends and high school students in Korea, a country where making the grade is so notoriously brutal, suicide seems like a viable option, and life without the grades, a dead end. Min and Taesoo’s junior thug activities lead them to an uncertain future; Taesoo pursues a life of crime, while Min tries to escape from it.

This is a tight film with an emotional wallop and it’s easy to see why it was such a huge hit with the young crowd. Romanticism and heightened emotionalism that only teenage hormones can produce, however, are grounded in the cold, hard facts of life and its consequences, making it a credible and affecting movie. Yoo Oh-sung (Attack the Gas Station, Friend) does a stand out performance as Taesoo. Chung Woo-sung as Min and Ko So-young as Romy play the star-crossed lovers. Well-made and well worth seeing.

Related Posts

Comments are closed.

« »