Director: Yoon Sung-hyun
Cast: Lee Je-Hoon, Seo Jun-Young, Park Jung-Min
Film genre: Drama
Cert 15, 116 mins, 2010
While Bleak Night is framed around a mystery narrative as a father searches for answers into his son’s suicide, its emotional heft comes from the fine performances of the young cast, all of whose star would continue to ascend, following this impressively gritty debut release from director Yoon Sung-hyun.
Cutting backwards in time, the film follows three high-school boys as their relationships incrementally sour when minor slights escalate into major rifts. The problems start when charismatic Ji-tae (Lee Je-hoon) and introspective ‘Becky’ fall out after each of them inadvertently wounds the other’s pride. As the scheming Ji-tae’s anger turns to cruel bullying, the self-assured Dong-yoon (Seo Jun-young) gets involved, earning his former buddy’s ire in equal measure.
Expertly capturing the slowly mounting tensions and violent consequences that result when stubborn male pride gets in the way of emotional understanding, the film posits a bleak future for young men similarly trapped in silence.