Hyun Bin's filmography assessment... Part 2
Updated: Nov 2, 2021
When I made up my mind that I like Hyun Bin, I came up with the task to watch as many of his works as possible. Since the list of dramas is long, I will make a general referance to a number of them and if I feel the need to elaborate further, I will do it in a new post.
"A Millionaire's First Love" (2006) is such an unsuitable title for an unexpectedly good movie. In one of his earliest films, Hyun Bin makes us aknowledge him as a talented actor and not only as a handsome face. He plays the role of a 19 year old spoilt heir who in order to inherit his grandfather's huge fortune, he must satisfy the condition of his will to graduate from a high-school in the countryside. There, he falls for a young girl who has a tragic secret. A life-changing relationship that makes him mature within a short period and prove how powerful love can be.
"The Fatal Encounter" (2014). An epic drama which I wouldn't watch for a second time.
A rather indifferent film but Hyun Bin is good even in this genre,playing the role of a king who struggles to survive a series of assassination attempts and at the same time to keep his throne. I will not say that I regretted watching it so you should give it a try if you like this kind of movie.
"The Swindlers" (2017). It was much closer to my taste, with a cast of highly aknowledged actors. It gave me nothing more and nothing less than what I expected. And here is the key for a viewer to be able to evaluate what he sees: He must know what he expects and why he chooses to watch whatever it is. Having this as my principle, I rarely get disappointed or misjudge a film. It is a pleasant movie with a good plot, exactly what the title implies. We watch a team of con men who co-operate with a prosecutor in order to capture a common enemy. Very good actors who deliver us a very entertaining film.
"Confidential Assignment" (2017). I wanted to watch it from the moment I saw the trailer. It was as if I was watching a basic Hollywood action movie of past decades,with some funny touches. I liked it for what it was. Not exceptional but offers a very good time. Hyun Bin is a north korean military officer who comes to South Korea in pursuit of a criminal. He combines forces with a seemingly naive and easy-going police officer who helps him more than he expected. I intend to rewatch it since a sequel will be released soon.
"The Negotiation"(2018) is Son Ye-Jin's and Hyun Bin's first encounter! I observed more tension here than in "Crash Landing on You"! Son Ye-Jin is a negotiator who tries to achieve the best outcome through a hostage situation with Hyun Bin as the culprit. Great suspense from the very beginning, holding our breaths while watching these two actors giving their best (in my opinion) performance. If you think that it is a film similar to a Hollywood one, then you'd better not see it. It has the typical korean pace in the storyline therefore it demands the viewer's full concentration. Most korean thriller or police plots are more or less of this type so I found nothing negative in this. I fully enjoyed it and I believe it is Bin's best movie up to now.
I will make a last referance to "Rampant" (2018),because it was a completely different film than any other I've watched. Zombies in the Joseon era! Certainly, this genre has its fans. Strangely enough, I enjoyed it since it included many comical moments and Hyun Bin's presence always gives extra points.