Actor Hwang Jung-min

Veteran

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Film info

Director: Ryoo Seung-wan
Cast: Hwan Jung-min, Yoo Ah-in
124mins, 2015

By Paul Quinn

New World

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Film info

Director: Park Hoon-jung
Cast: Hwang Jung-min, Choi Min-sik, Lee Jung-jae
Cert 18, 112mins, 2011

Written and directed by Park Hoon-jung (who also wrote the scripts for The Unjust and I Saw the Devil), New World presents a star-studded cast to tell the story of visceral battles within the gangster world as each attempt to seize control of the Goldmoon crime syndicate, following the death of its boss. Lee Joong-gu (Park Sung-woong) – in charge of operations in Seoul – and the, some would say, psychotic Jung Chung (the inimitable Hwang Jung-min) – who deals with operations outside Korea – are the standout contenders locked in a brutal head-to-head struggle for power. But with police chief Kang (Oldboy’s Choi Min-sik) attempting to influence the succession to ensure the group can be controlled and undercover police officer Lee Ja-sung (Lee Jung-jae) precariously ensconced in Goldmoon’s inner circle, allegiances are never guaranteed, loyalties never to be trusted. The only certainty is that blood will be spilt.

By Paul Quinn

The Unjust

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Film info

Director: Ryoo Seung-wan
Cast: Hwang Jung-min, Ryoo Seung-bum, Yoo Hae-jin
Cert 18, 120mins, 2001

For his 2010 outing, director Ryoo Seung-wan, who had regularly been called ‘the action kid of Korean cinema’, abandoned much of the ‘hip action’ of his earlier films to produce a far more in-depth, eclectic thriller complete with astutely observed social commentary. The Unjust tells the story of police detective Choi Cheol-gi (Hwang Jung-min) whose reputation is threatened by bribery allegations relating to his family. Approached by his unscrupulous boss, Cheol-gi is promised a promotion if he finds a fall guy for a serial murder case. However, Cheol-gi’s dirty deals are also under investigation by elite prosecutor Joo Yang (Ryoo Seong-bum) who decides to propose some dangerous arrangements of his own.

By Paul Quinn

A Good Lawyer's Wife

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Film info

Director: Im Sang-soo
Cast: Hwang Jung-min, Moon So-ri, Youn Yuh-jung
104mins, 2003

Joo Youngjak (Hwang Jung-min) is a lawyer who is in an almost loveless marriage with former dancer Hojung (Moon So-ri). The two have little in common, aside from their adopted son Sooin, and their relationship has been for some time little more than a case of two virtually independent individuals going through the motions of a relationship. In fact, Youngjak is so self-obsessed that even though his father has been diagnosed with terminal liver failure, he concentrates most of his energy on his extra-marital affair with Yun (Baek Jung-rim). However, when he accidentally hits a drunken motorcyclist while taking a drive with his mistress, the ensuing consequences threaten to tear his already unstable family apart. Director Im Sangsoo is known for combining politics and sexuality in his film narratives. is a virtual definition of his work.

By Paul Quinn