The Foul King
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Wrestling is a choreographed theater of primal aggression. For years, Dae-ho has been watching the clashes of wrestlers, pumped-up with testosterone. He knows all their signature punches and throws by heart. He can only dream about a career on the ring – he is a complete wimp, a slouch bank clerk whom his boss publicly uses to test his humiliating grips. Oh, and he lives with his dad.
Yet fate gives Dae-ho a chance to prove himself in professional wrestling. The owner of a rundown club offers him the role of a masked Foul King, fighting his opponents with dirty tricks and clever gadgets, to the delight of the crowds. Dae-ho enters the bizarre world of wrestlers and starts a series of intense trainings that are supposed to pave his way to the top. Will they boost his self-esteem enough to let him take revenge on his bullies and win the heart of his beloved?
"The Foul King" is the second film by Kim Jee-woon, an outstanding auteur of New Korean Cinema. The director talks about the brutal sport in a surprising, bitter-sweet, melancholic tone, creating a farce about the fight for one's dignity in an unjust world. The film owes much of its success to the nuanced, dramatic, yet highly comical acting of Song Kang-ho. This was the actor's first leading role on his way to stardom.
The soundtrack includes pieces by UhUhBoo, a band know for their collaboration with Park Chan-wook and Pina Bausch, which gave a live performance at the 7th Five Flavours.
Born in 1964, the leading member of the New Korean Cinema, combining auteur successes with box office ambitions. He was first noticed for his pitch-black comedy "The Quiet Family." His subsequent films show his strong affiliation with genre cinema – "The Foul King" is a sports film, "A Tale of Two Sisters" is a horror, "A Bittersweet Life" is a gangster film, and "I Saw the Devil" is a revenge thriller. After his Hollywood debut ("The Last Stand"), he returned to Korea.
1998 Spokojna rodzinka / Choyonghan kajok / The Quiet Family
2000 Król fauli / Banchikwang / The Foul King
2003 Opowieść o dwóch siostrach / Janghwa, Hongryeon / A Tale of Two Sisters
2005 Słodko-gorzkie życie / Dalkomhan Insaeng / A Bittersweet Life
2008 Dobry, zły i zakręcony / Joheunnom nabbeunnom isanghannom / The Good, the Bad and the Weird
2018 Illang: Wilcza brygada / In-lang / Illang: The Wolf Brigade