‘Decision to leave’: Park Chan-Wook reminds us that cinema is chaos and beauty in a criminal love story as unclassifiable as it is essential

“Why, why am I so afraid in this cloud of mist?” This is how the lyrics of ‘Angae’ begin, the song that summarizes in a few verses the complex narrative kaleidoscope from the latest movie Park Chan Wook. In ‘Decision to leave’ a loving obsession guides the footage through knuckles, empty swimming pools, insomnia and voice notes sheltered from a rising tide. The result is not perfect, but fascinating enough that you never make the decision to leave his universe.

narrative haze

Like Hae-Jun’s life, ‘Decision to leave’ lives in a continuous haze that leaves an air of strangeness throughout the entire footage: his fascinating maze of plots and characters allows him to play with the viewer and with his protagonists, adding layers of depth to the romantic drama and allowing himself the luxury of ending in that same fog that accompanies the entire film.

after watching so many movies It is not usually the case that when turning on the lights we need a process of readaptation to the real worldbut after spending two hours and twenty minutes in the hands of Park Chan-Wook, a short period of reflection is almost mandatory to try to grasp everything we have seen before it leaves our heads, like someone waking up from an incredible dream that doesn’t want it to fade away so quickly.

Decision To Leave 2

Perhaps that is why there are those who have found a deep disappointment in his last (and beautiful) scene, which culminates the fringes of the plots that have to do so in a way as beautiful as poetic, as definitive as colossal. Park Chan-Wook forces the viewer to say goodbye little by little to the tape, no matter how much he wants to spend more time there. It’s not that the film leaves things unsaid, it’s that it trusts the intelligence of whoever is on the other side, aware that sometimes it is better that not everything comes to a satisfactory conclusion. It was never necessary for a grand finale.

Go to sleep, you don’t paint anything here anymore

Those of us who write about cinema sooner or later we have come across someone who demands an “objective critique”, dissecting the film almost as if it were a mathematical formula: script by direction plus actors divided by negative points. But, how do you get to this supposed and impossible objectivity in a film like ‘Decision to leave’, which bets on intrigue, romance, the oneiric and the police drama with hints of comedy and succeeds in all of them? It’s more, How to explain that, despite her absolute mastery in all areas, she is not perfect?

Decision 1

Park Chan-Wook clearly drinks from Alfred Hitchcock to build your puzzle, but he moves away from the master of suspense by changing only a small part of the perspective. Wook doesn’t care who did it or why they did it, but how the person who did it feels… And how knowing it makes the protagonist feel. Guilt, love, passion, loneliness, insomnia, the break with your ideals, deceitthe insane persecution, the voice notes: ‘Decision to leave’ is endless within its street poetry and its passionate and impossible romance.

The key piece of the puzzle does not solve the riddle of who has committed a crime or their motivations, but what unusual feelings (but understandable within the sick logic of the film) causes in the characters. Park Chan-Wook’s tape is a nuclear bomb that slowly but surely destroys everything in its pathleaving behind three people whose lives were already totally shattered before it exploded.

the perfect imperfection

Although ‘Decision to leave’ is a great film and one of the most resounding bets of the year, it is no less true that It does not reach the level of the best proposals of Park Chan-Wook. It is not something that speaks against the tape, but in favor of the author of old boy, ‘The maid’ or ‘Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance’. While its visual innovation is exciting, the story isn’t as compact as you’d like.and this dispersion, added to the loose narrative and a slow start that is difficult to get into, make it not as round as it could have been.

That does not mean that it is a minor work or that you should ignore it: ‘Decision to leave’ is a story between insomnia and phrases that say “I love you” without saying it that has a unique edition and one of the most precious and authentic visual identities that cinema has given in recent years. Yes it is dense. Yes, you may feel an empty feeling when you finish. Yes, the characters could solve their problems simply by saying two sentences to each other at the right time. But the cinema is not logical.

Park Chan-Wook knows that cinema is chaos and escapes human logic. That’s why in ‘Decision to leave’ he brings together genres, ideas, hopes, loves and emotional damage, knowing that he has carte blanche that a camera gives him to create and narrate in his own style. Luckily, she is not intimidated at any time nor does her pulse tremble due to the daring of what she carries out, its excessive duration or leaving some plot lines hanging. A director with his own personality does what he wants, although not always at the center of the target. And that’s perfect.

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‘Decision to leave’: Park Chan-Wook reminds us that cinema is chaos and beauty in a criminal love story as unclassifiable as it is essential

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