Public Enemy

South Korea's answer to Dirty Harry

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OPENS JULY 25, CERT 18, 138 MINS

Fans of undercover cop movies frustrated by Hollywood’s insistence on casting Martin Lawrence in all of them should instead turn east for their fix. Among those refreshing the genre are the forthcoming Infernal Affairs (set for a Brad Pitt remake) and this Korean police-procedural.

Kang Woo-suk’s thriller features a rule-busting anti-hero, a ridiculously cold-blooded villain and relentless action (including a chainsaw climax). What’s not to love? Sul Kyung-gu plays Chul-joong, a jaded officer who rips off drug dealers. When internal affairs forces him to make a legitimate arrest for a change, Chul-joong finds himself trying to connect a pair of brutal murders to ruthless businessman Gyu-hwan (Lee Sung-jae).

It has the best weapons demo since Steven Prince’s in Taxi Driver, more gratuitous head-slapping than the Three Stooges, and the sort of verve and impact that’s been missing from US cop films for ages.

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