Review: Recalled

An acquaintance who is very much into Korean TV dramas thinks that every single one has to contain either an amnesiac or incest. This twisted mystery sort of has both, but even if you go into it knowing that it’s still quite surprising. A woman named Soo-jin (Seo Yea-ji) is involved in a serious accident and when she wakes up in the hospital her husband, Ji-hoon (Kim Kang-woo) is there beside her; or, at least, he says he’s her husband. She can’t remember much of anything before the accident, but in any case Ji-hoon is preternaturally devoted and over time his efforts to help her recover seem almost superhuman. However, Soo-jin keeps having hallucinations of what seem to be future events, and the viewer is led to believe that she now possesses some kind of psychic power, but what’s actually happening is even stranger.

As usual, it takes a police detective to bring certain matters to light that point to the truth behind the hallucinations, and the script is structured in such a way that these truths are revealed in layers so as to project what seemed to be future events into the past, and, of course, the first casualty of these revelations is Ji-hoon, who Soo-jin soon suspects is not really her husband. Certainly, the cleverest idea has to do with where Soo-jin actually lives, since it plays into current news stories about overpriced, undersold condominiums in Korea. But it also involves migrating to Canada, adoptive parents, patricide, and domestic violence. Director Seo Yu-min has to maintain an iron grip on the story. One slip and the whole premise, which is constructed not so much as a puzzle box but rather like a house of cards, will come tumbling down. It’s a cute trick, but considering the build-up some may find the payoff a little disappointing.

In Korean. Now playing in Tokyo at Cinemart Shinjuku (03-5369-2831).

Recalled home page in Japanese

photo (c) 2021 CJ ENM

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