Sunday, October 16, 2011

[DVD] The Chaser (추격자 / Chugyeogja) (2008)

An Uphill Climb

The Chaser has not lost its intensity with a second viewing, and as always with a repeated viewing you tend to pick up additional observations that you may have missed the first time round. Rewatching this also served as homework, if in case you're wondering why, I'll be moderating a session with The Chaser's co-writer Lee Shinho in a screenwriter event sidebar of the Singapore Writers Festival this year happening from 22nd to 30th October. If you're game to watch the film and engage Lee Shinho in a post-screening discussion and Q&A, then do visit the Festival website to obtain details on getting a Festival pass and other ticketed events.

You can read my review of The Chaser here

The Region 3 DVD by Innoform Media presents the film in a pristine anamorphic widescreen transfer, with audio in its original Korean soundtrack in Dolby Digital Stereo. Subtitles are available in English and Mandarin and available through the Extras as well, which are presented in letterbox or full screen 4x3.

Extras include the Teaser Trailer (1:33), the Main Trailer (2:27) and 2 TV Spots (0:47). For those in a hurry (the only reason I can think of for this feature to exist), you can play the Highlights feature which contains key clips from the first half of the film condensed into approximately 23 minutes. The Interview (10:11) segment contains separate talking head interviews with Kim Yun-seok, Ha Jung-woo and Seo Yeong-hie who play the three main leads, talking about their respective characters and challenges during filming.

The Making Of (19:40) gives you the ringside seat as if you're one of the cast participating in the shoot. There's a detailed construction of the scene where the characters of Joong-ho and Young-min first meet with their minor car accident leading to the foot chase in and around the district. While that scene took up precious minutes, the making of was anything but simple and short, with repeated takes to achieve various angles, which allows you to appreciate the sheer effort involved to make a scene come alive. Other scenes given similar treatment include a fight scene at the police station between the two leads, a mass digging operations at Young-min's previous workplace, Joong-ho's escape from the police van following a crash into a tree and his unsuccessful hailing of a cab, and the last involves Joong-ho walking in the rain.

And rounding things up is a Photo Gallery with 22 film stills.

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