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Thirst
DVD disk
Nov 18, 2009 By: Chris Bumbray
Thirst order download
Director:
Park Chan-Wook

Actors:
Song Kang-Ho

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
A kindly priest (Song Kang-Ho) is transformed into a vampire after receiving a life-saving blood transfusion. At first, he tries to fight his new nature, but after embarking on a torrid love affair with the wife of one of his parishioners, he begins to succumb to temptation.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
THIRST is the latest film from acclaimed South Korean filmmaker, Park Chan-Wook. I've been following Chan-Wook's career ever since being blown away by a screening of his masterpiece, SYMPATHY FOR MR. VENGEANCE at the 2003 edition of Fantasia in Montreal.

THIRST reunites Chan-Wook with the star of that film, Song Kang-Ho- who's probably the biggest star in South Korea, after appearing in such homegrown hits as THE HOST, and THE GOOD, THE BAD, & THE WEIRD. THIRST gives him another chance to flex his considerable acting muscle, with his kindly priest character making a very sympathetic protagonist- despite the many terrible things he does later in the film. He's only infected with the Vampire blood due to his own altruism, as he's volunteered to be a guinea pig in some clinical trials meant to stop a worldwide pandemic. He knowingly infects himself with this deadly virus in order to take part in the trials- but, alas, fate has different plans- and he becomes a vampire.

The film takes an interesting turn after about an hour. Initially, the film is almost a kind of black comedy, with Kang-Ho making an amusingly inept vampire. However, once the priest breaks his vow of chastity, and gives into his burgeoning vampire sexuality, the film takes a dark turn. He's forced to turn his lover into a vampire, and while he's happy occasionally siphoning some blood from comatose patients at the hospital he volunteers in, his new companion has a much more voracious appetite.

At 134 minutes, THIRST maybe goes on a shade too long, as the film could probably have been tightened up a bit- but it nonetheless makes for very satisfying viewing. While it's probably no SYMPATHY FOR MR. VENGEANCE, or OLDBOY, it's still a very worthwhile film, and makes me eager to see what Chan-Wook has in store with his next film.

THE EXTRAS
Here' swhere the DVD really fails- as Universal has provide the film with no extras to speak of. We don't even get a trailer.

FINAL DIAGNOSIS
Lovers of all things Vampire will find lots to love here, although it must be said that this has more in common with something like LET THE RIGHT ONE IN, than it does with TRUE BLOOD (and is about as far removed from TWILIGHT as one could imagine). Anyone who likes their vampire tales to be a tad more on the cerebral side will definitely certainly enjoy this.
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