Well Go USA (USA)
Audio: DTS-HD MA 5.1 Korean, DD 2.0 surround Korean
Subtitles: Optional English
Extras: Behind the Scenes; Interviews; trailers
Released: 15 April 2014
At its core, Confession of Murder is a psychological duel between Detective Choi Hyung-gu (Jung Jae-young) and a serial killer who manages to avoid being captured for fifteen years. This length of time is important for the serial killer because that is when the statute of limitations expires. One day, Lee Du-sok (Park Si-hoo) confesses that he committed the unsolved murders and publishes a book detailing the crimes. Lee says that he feels remorse and wants his book to help the country heal. The photogenic Lee becomes an instant celebrity.
The movie has generous servings of the dark humor that is prevalent in Korean cinema. Some of the humor is generated by the actors' exaggerated emoting. The filmmakers also satirize image-obsessed youth, TV stations chasing ratings, and modern society's general lack of morals.
The script generates tension from two narrative strands. Detective Choi wants to recover the body of one of the killer's victims, even if he can't arrest the killer. Meanwhile, the victims' families are plotting to kill Lee, so Choi has to protect Lee even as they engage in a public relations battle.
Confession of Murder has two major weaknesses. The first is a structural/storytelling issue. The movie begins in 2005 and then jumps to 2007. However, it seems like the serial killer has been committing crimes up until 2005, so even if the statute of limitations prevents him from being prosecuted for earlier crimes, he could still be arrested for his more recent activities. Moreover, he assaults a police officer, which surely violates some sort of law in South Korea.
My other problem with the movie is the inclusion of three major action sequences. The movie begins with a rooftop footchase. There is an elaborate car chase during the second act. The movie ends with yet another car chase. Yes, the director previously directed a documentary (Action Boys) about stuntmen, but these overblown chases strain credulity. Much of Confession of Murder strives to be a realistic drama, but the chases are so over-the-top (not to mention way too long) that they are counterproductive. The action sequences are further marred by sub-standard CGI.
You get an excellent 2.40:1 1080p transfer. The picture is very sharp, and I enjoyed the generally rich, dark hues.
The DTS-HD MA 5.1 Korean track has plenty of show-off moments. The opening footchase takes place during a rainstorm, and your entire listening environment will be “drenched”, so to speak. Gunshots are loud and occasionally startling. The car chases send sound effects flying and crashing all over the room.
“Behind the Scenes” is a collection of interviews mixed with very brief glimpses of production footage. These clips are obviously promotional in nature and were probably used to advertise the movie prior to its theatrical release.
There are two interviews with Jung Jae-young and Park Si-hoo.
Finally, you also get a trailer for Confession of Murder as well as previews for other movies.