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Category:    Home > Reviews > Action > Gangster > Martial Arts Cycle > Puzzle (2006/Genius DVD)

Puzzle (2006/Genius DVD)


Picture: C+     Sound: C+     Extras: C-     Film: C-



Another attempt to make a slick Gangster film in the John Woo style, Writer/Director Kim Tae-Kyung’s Puzzle (2006) from Korea also tries to have some mystery and slick narrative variation and though it is ambitious ands has some energy, it lands up being as unmemorable as the usual such film which became formula many years ago.  Take five strangers (Usual Suspects) who are dangerous criminals (Reservoir Dogs) and have them brought together by a mysterious figure (the kind of thing spoofed back in the mid-1970s by Murder By Death) and you get 92 minutes of promise that never delivers.


The actors are not bad, but the script is, with the creators believing that they are doing something far more original than we get, but I wonder if even fans of this kind of thing are not totally sick of this all by now.  Two years later, this is making it here in the U.S. on DVD (so many never even get that far) and it is not “puzzle” to figure out why you have not heard of this one.  Only the most diehard fans should apply.


The anamorphically enhanced 2.35 X 1 image is a little soft, but has some nice compositions as lensed by Director of Photography Kim Tae-Sung, but the editing is still the same old same old.  The Dolby Digital Korean 5.1 mix has some soundfield, but dialogue is on the limited side and the mix undistinguished.  Extras include a making of the music score with composer Woody Kim, actor interviews and a behind the scenes featurette.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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