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Overall Rating

Awesome: 7.69%
Worth A Look: 38.46%
Average: 7.69%
Pretty Bad46.15%
Total Crap: 0%

1 review, 7 user ratings

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Tell Me Something
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by Greg Muskewitz

"I can see you, but I can't hear you!"
2 stars

My rejoinder: Tell Me Something Better.

For all the effort and apt technical aptitude, one would have hoped for a better story/mystery than this Korean Basic Instinct reproduction, with the major substitution being gore instead of sleaze. A shady cop (shady by means of we know he isn’t liked by many, but without clarification of why?) is assigned to solve an anfractuous case where various bodyparts of different victims are abandoned and mismatched in trashbags. The three main victims (or which parts of them have been found) are eventually linked to a young woman doctor, who has associated herself with some nasty people in the past. But which of them could it be? There are so many arrows pointing in so many directions, Tell Me Something becomes futile to try and piece together. Partway through, there are some bright lights that sort of shine through to give one a respectable and easy guess at who it is, or if they are involved in the murderous mayhem. The ending doesn’t help to puts the pieces together however (no pun intended), and it drops like an unsupported anvil. It is never understood what the flashbacks to the doctor’s childhood were supposed to properly reveal, why there was a body made of stitched-together pieces and what its meaning was, what the motives of any of the deaths were for, how the killers were connected, how much each had their hand in it, etc. It leaves the viewer frustrated and unconvinced—unsure—of any and all that went down over the past two-hours. And it hardly would want to make anyone see it again in hopes of picking up on something missed. Director Chang Yoon-Hyun most often has a calm control over his affairs and shows no signs of pretension in his style, though he surely has a penchant or affection for gallons and gallons of blood (obviously influenced by Seven). The film has an elegant look—the car pile-up is orchestrated with an utmost thrill and awe-inspiring realisticness, the dissected pieces of the bodies are astonishingly and grotesquely authentic, etc.—and Yoon-Hyun assembles a good selection in music appurtenance, particularly the best usage of Enja in a film ever, but despite all of what is unsullied and admirable, the gaps in the story castigate it. Better examples of inscrutable and enigmatic mysteries are in Audition and also recently Cure. They involve and toy with the audience so much more cerebrally, and creatively, that while this is surely a pretty decoration to look at, the inside of the parcel is more empty than full. (Tell Me Something, following The Luzhin Defence, is also at least the third or fourth film this year to include Dmitri Shostakovich’s “Waltz 2 from Jazz Suite” after becoming so popular and recognizable upon its renewal in Eyes Wide Shut.)

With Han Suk-Kyu and Shim Eun-Ha (falling right behind Eihi Shiina and Tran Nu Yên-Khé in order of maximal beauty).

Final Verdict: C-.

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originally posted: 09/29/01 01:13:09
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User Comments

4/21/14 x I couldn't figure it out either on first viewing, but the answers are there! 5 stars
11/17/11 Golden J. Williams Jr. Very good (but slow) who-dunnit. I enjoyed the movie. 4 stars
12/25/06 RKK Differing opinions means you might as well watch it yourself. Loose ends are OK with me. 4 stars
8/15/06 K.Sear A very complicated thriller. I'm not sure how the pieces fit yet but I will figure it out. 4 stars
11/01/05 J Greg Muskewitz did you even watch this? 4 stars
4/28/04 Mark Louis Baumgart essentially this a Korean Gaillo, illogical, bloody fun if you are in the right mindframe 3 stars
11/10/01 Jung kichul see and think 4 stars
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