Korean Movie Review – Confession of Murder (내가 살인범이다)

This 2012 thriller’s frenzied opening scene sees cop Choi Hyeong-gu (Jeong Jae-yeong) chasing an assailant over the rooftops of Seoul. Choi has a murky past with this man, so the fact that his target manages to escape causes our lead character a great deal of pain. But any pity we feel for him vanishes when another man takes his own life by jumping off a roof — only to be hit by a passing bus.

After such a crazy opening, “Confession of  Murder” jumps forward two years and shows Choi reduced to a common drunk with a temper, shattered by losing the serial killer who murdered his fiancée. But then, out of nowhere, a man named Lee decides to finally confess to the murders, at this point committed 17 years prior, as the statute of limitations has finally expired. Lee says he wants to atone for his crimes, so he releases a book describing the murders in great detail, which makes him something of a celebrity.

Choi, however, has his suspicions. Why would Lee confess after all this time? The situation is muddled even further when another man simply known as “J” (Jeong Hae-gyun) also confesses to the murders. But with Lee’s book detailing the crimes in such a way that it’s impossible to not take him seriously, Choi must find out which of these psychos is telling the truth: the pretty-boy celebrity or the mysterious “J.”

As is typical of a lot of Korean movies, the first hour of this drama is at times unintentionally comedic. For example, there’s a car chase that feels more in line with the Keystone Cops than a Korean revenge film. Things don’t get down to the nitty-gritty until the second hour, as the secrets begin to unravel and we try to work out the truth behind the mystery. Then, as you may well have guessed, the film ends with a lot of screaming, a lot of crying and a decent amount of blood.
“Confession of Murder” is the debut feature film from director Jeong Byeong-gil and, despite the unintentional comedy, is a strong effort that is worth your time.

Categories: Reviews

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