Directed by Shim Sung-Bo, "Haemoo" is recount of a true event, about a group of fishermen who are driven into madness when their attempt to smuggle illegal migrants ends in a horrible tragedy.
Six crew members – led by the captain, together with the kind-hearted chief engineer ‘Wan-ho’(Moon Sung-geun) who had an eventful life and lives hidden on the boat, were on board of the ship. To protect the ship and their livelihoods, Captain ‘Cheol-ju’(Kim Yoon-seok) suggests to his crew members the job in helping to smuggle [stowaways].
The youngest crew member ‘Dong-shik’(Park Yoo-Chun) who just started working aboard the ship recently, is naive to dream of having their boat with a full load of fish. However, they are transporting human beings instead of fishes in the open sea!
Numerous of stowaways who risks their lives and comes across the sea, and the six crew members who are on board a fated boat. Amid that, an unknown ‘sea fog’ to which they cannot see what’s in front of themselves comes down and they become swept into an uncontrollable accident…
The M-18 rated movie has a numbers of sexual and voilent scenes which can be quite disturbing to some. It talks about the dark side of humanity, which is pretty mind-boggling. The hash reality of survival and brutality of life, and the greed and lust vs. morality, the courage the loves bring around. Out of desperation, greed and lust, people may behave out of the norms and even abandon morality. The brutal violent scenes are definitely not meant for the faint-hearted.
Yet, we also see how loves bring about courage, displayed by Dong-shik (casted by Park Yoo-Chun) towards the Chinese korean immigrant, Hong-mae, striving hard to protect her.
While the movie does not consists of many handsome or beautiful faces, the actors who acted in the movie are all veterans actors which you can expect nothing except for their great acting skills that will bring you through the story.
I heard a numbers of viewers lamenting that Haemoo is a great movie, except for its open-ended story ending. However, I personally felt that there's really no need to have everything spelt out clearly, in fact, most of my friends and I perceived the same for its ending. This open-ended story ending actually left the audience discussing after the movie ends, which is quite interesting, creating interaction.
If I have to pick on something, I would say the fog scene is just too artificial, nonetheless, this movie's highlight will be more on the storyline itself than the special effects, so I'll still recommend it for watching!
Dong-shik // casted by Park Yoo-Chun
Cheol-ju // casted by Kim Yoon-seok
Wan-ho // casted by Moon Sung-geun
Hong-mae // casted by Han Ye-ri
Images Credit: Clover Film Singapore