The new acclaimed cinematic masterpiece from South Korean director, Lee Chang-Dong, ‘Burning’, based on a Haruki Murakami short story and transferred to Korea, has cast a spell on critics and moviegoers equally.
Jong-soo is drifting through the South Korean town Paju with the world being a riddle to him. The studied young man is just about staying afloat with occasional jobs while still dreaming of becoming a writer. His life seems to change when he runs into his former classmate, Hae-mi, in the streets; they get closer and become friends and even spend a night before Hae-mi disappears to Africa for a while.
When Hae-mi returns he’s taken aback when introduced to Ben, a good-looking, apparently very rich and equally self-confident and bold guy she met on her trip. Despite being increasingly intimidated by his presence, he joins the couple on some of their ventures and Ben reveals a maverick hobby of his… More and more the plot seems to be melting with the dreams, desires and fantasies of its figures.
‘Burning’ is a movie that takes more than two hours to enfold slowly, like a burning and devastating fire, becoming a mystery thriller that is unique. Weaving the visible and the invisible, the obvious and the mystery, and the existing as well as the imagined. As we spellbound witness how the figures’ secrets intertwine we then strongly want to know how their story ends without the movie’s magic to cease.