Sight and Sound - 12/01/2006
"[A]s ever with Kim, there are moments of stomach-knotting force."
Korean filmmaker Kim Ki-Duk (SPRING, SUMMER, FALL, WINTER...AND SPRING) dramatizes the schism between North and South Korea in THE COAST GUARD (HAE ANSEON). Private Kang (Jang Dong-kun) is a South Korean soldier fanatically dedicated to his country and his duty, patrolling the shores at night to prevent North Korean spies from entering the country. But one night while on patrol, he mistakes a civilian couple for enemies and kills the man. From that moment forward, his fate seems linked to that of the woman, as both slowly lose their minds from guilt and paranoia. THE COAST GUARD is Kim Ki-Duk's powerful condemnation of the militarism that has gripped the two countries.