Action / Comedy / Crime
Action / Comedy / Crime
Hwang Ki Joon, Mr Action, and Kang Hee Yeol, Mr Bookworm, are two best friends but contradictory students at Korean National Police University. They accidentally witness a kidnapping and decide to work together to track it down.
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February 18, 2018 at 11:56 PM
What a Fun and Refreshing Movie!
Finally a break from the relenting string of dark, gruesome, violent movies from S. Korea! Midnight Runners is a refreshing break from the genre movie of gangs and violence that we typically get from Korea. The main actors: Park Seo Joon and Kang Ha Neul have fantastic chemistry and their scenes are effortlessly outrageously hilarious. Their comic timing, delivery and the way they play off each other's lines is just amazing to watch.
The story is not the most ingenuous or complex, but it works. It's a simple story about two young police academy cadets who don't have a real strong reason or desire to become police officers and who unwittingly find themselves in a situation that requires them to demonstrate the moral fiber and courage of what one would hope to find in a future police officer. It's not fancy and that's the key. It's simple, relatable, and most importantly a whole lot of fun and funny. I was definitely glad to have watched it, and walked out having felt like all the stress of the day was laughed off during the movie.
This year there were no other movies that made me laugh this hard
Entertaining buddy-cop action flicks have not been lighting up the screens for some time. In comes Midnight Runners which tweaks the well-trodden formula and the result is one crackerjack of a super-fun thriller. So far this year, no other movies have made me laugh so heartily.
Gi Jun (Park Seo Jun), aka Mr Action, and Kang Hee Yeol (Kang Ha Neul), Mr Germophobe-Bookworm, are two best friends at the Korean National Police University. They accidentally witness a young woman getting abducted and decide to work together to investigate it because they have learnt that time is of the essence in cases like this – even when they get tied up in red tape and find out they could be expelled.
Buddy-cop action thrillers tend to rely heavily on counterpoints to draw the two main characters – one fit, one fat (21 Jump Street), one full of action, one wisecracker (48 Hours), one nuts, one down-to-earth (Lethal Weapon). All three became lucrative franchises so you know the studios don't like to mess with the formula much. Midnight Runners doesn't re-invent the buddy-cop wheel, but tweaks it just a little, making the movie stand out like a bed of roses. It doesn't lean on counterpoints to build camaraderie. They may be opposites in certain ways, but it is the passion for doing what is right that unites them. The screen-time is devoted equally on both of them and no one tries to out- play the other. They are the perfect duo; they are one even though they are not the same. Their chemistry is undoubtedly inflatable and infectious, and they seem like they are having a blast.
Sometimes in my classes I get kids asking me dreaded questions like "What is the point of learning Calculus?" or "Am I going to use any of these stuff in life?". Midnight Runners addresses that in one pivotal scene that had me guffawing in laughter. I enjoyed the scenes of them using what they have learnt to crack the case. Writer-director Kim Joo Hwan even skewers the upper echelons of the police force and iterates the true purpose education itself in a noteworthy scene. How Kim deftly balances the dark crime with a light tone and ponderous moments is a magical act. It helps when you have such winsome characters. I think the best praise I can give it is that I sincerely hope there is a sequel in the works. Make it happen
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Fresh And Realistic
Script is rather standard, jokes are a bit Asian and manga like. But hey, this is a Korean movie! This is not US action flick. This is heart- warming, fun action-drama about the right choices. And doing them just because you believe. Yes, characters lack depth, yes some non-Asian viewers might not like the humour, the child-like faces. The rest will enjoy a story in which doing the right thing is the most important thing. Instead of showing young people how cool is to have money, even by making them from drugs and crime, it's better to show them that happiness can be much more meaningful when it comes from within ourselves. Decent story- check. Nice camera work - check, fun - check, high-morals - check. Enjoyable - check.