HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
American Fiction
Poor Things
Thunderclap
Zeiram
Legend of the Bat
Party Line
Night Fright
Pacha, Le
Kimi
Assemble Insert
Venus Tear Diamond, The
Promare
Beauty's Evil Roses, The
Free Guy
Huck and Tom's Mississippi Adventure
Rejuvenator, The
Who Fears the Devil?
Guignolo, Le
Batman, The
Land of Many Perfumes
Cat vs. Rat
Tom & Jerry: The Movie
Naked Violence
Joyeuses Pacques
Strangeness, The
How I Became a Superhero
Golden Nun
Incident at Phantom Hill
Winterhawk
Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City
Maigret Sets a Trap
B.N.A.
Hell's Wind Staff, The
Topo Gigio and the Missile War
Battant, Le
Penguin Highway
Cazadore de Demonios
Snatchers
Imperial Swordsman
Foxtrap
   
 
Newest Articles
3 From Arrow Player: Sweet Sugar, Girls Nite Out and Manhattan Baby
Little Cat Feat: Stephen King's Cat's Eye on 4K UHD
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
   
 
  Escape from Mogadishu Squabbling As The World Burns
Year: 2021
Director: Ryoo Seung-wan
Stars: Kim Yoon-seok, Jo In-Sung, Huh Joon-ho, Koo Kyo-hwan, Kim So-jin, Jeong Man-sik, Kim Jae-hwa, Park Kyung-hye, Park Myung-shin, Han Chul-Woo, Joo Bo-Bi, Ahn Se-ho, Lee Jin Hee, Choi Kyeong-Hoon, Lee Hwa-Jung, Jeong Byeong-doo
Genre: War, HistoricalBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Somalia, 1991, and South Korea has been determined to join the United Nations for some years now. What does that have to do with Somalia? They, as with a number of African nations, can have a deciding vote over whether the organisation lets them in, so Seoul has been sending diplomats and sweeteners there - or bribes, if you prefer - in the hope President Barre will agree to accepting them. Just one problem: North Korea would love to scupper these talks and prevent its neighbour and enemy from achieving its international goals, and they have diplomats in the country as well on a spoiler mission...

But never mind that, as there is a more pressing set of circumstances erupting, as we see when we follow the South Korean diplomat Han (Kim Yoon-seok) on a trip to meet with the President only to have all the goodies he was going to hand over be stolen by a group of terrorists. Or were they in the pay of the North? When he and his team arrive there they are told, because they are fifteen minutes late, that another meeting is taking place instead, with NK diplomat Rim (Huh Joon-ho), and Han sees red, so to speak. However, internal strife is fast dominating Somalia, and civil war is taking hold of its populace.

You may remember Ridley Scott's Black Hawk Down, and how it strived to represent the American experience in Somalia as that war threw everything into chaos. That banked on the fact that none of the soldiers really knew why they were there or what they were fighting for, that confusion contributing to the suspense, yet also depicting the locals as little more than bloodthirsty bogeymen who were rarely characterised above violent monsters. That's an issue with films set in war zones, but director Ryoo Seung-wan was more careful than that, or more thoughtful at least, with how he showed the antagonists.

After all, the real antagonists were the Koreans, and that sense of two factions squabbling over ideologies as the world burns around them felt very pertinent to the twenty-first century. It is a well-known fantasy of South Koreans that their country could undergo reunification, though it seems too much water has flowed under the bridge for that to happen any time soon, but Escape from Mogadishu provided fuel for that desire by positing the real-life story, albeit embellished, that both sides could set aside their differences and survive in a hostile environment. That said, it does take a lot of work to reach that agreement and grudges are very much in the air, but when the Northerners arrive at the embassy where the Southerners are hiding, something has to give.

Ryoo, already an expert in espionage thrillers on his home turf, travelled to Morocco to represent Somalia, which tended to be the go-to location for non-African movies wanting an African setting that they could produce their efforts in with some safety - Somalia is not a desirable destination even after all these years since 1991. But if locals could tell the difference, and note that there was not a huge try at explaining their situation, the violence of the place was brought home in many tense sequences, from meeting child soldiers to the climactic car chase in a mad dash to the airport where both Southerners and Northerners have been promised seats on a Red Cross plane out of there. This part garnered most of the attention, and it is superbly shot and staged, but there were gems of scenes scattered throughout, and the sense that while it was not going to get bogged down in politics, it did need to explain and provide hope. Only the spontaneous kung fu bit was out of place. Music by Bang Jun-seok.

[Signature Entertainment presents Escape from Mogadishu in Cinemas and on Digital Platforms 25th March 2022.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1367 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Enoch Sneed
  Louise Hackett
Darren Jones
Mark Le Surf-hall
Andrew Pragasam
Mary Sibley
Graeme Clark
  Desbris M
   

 

Last Updated: