It has been a really long while since I last stepped into a movie theatre. Even though cinemas around Singapore reopened their doors on July 13, ‘Deliver Us From Evil’ was the first new release I caught offline since COVID-19 happened. And to be honest, I wouldn’t have it any other way.
‘Deliver Us from Evil’ is a story about love, in a twisted sense. It is about a father’s love for his daughter. It is about a brother’s love. Former national security agent turned contract killer In Nam (played by Hwang Jung Min) is set to retire after one last assignment in Japan. However, he finds out belatedly that he has a nine-year-old daughter, and that she has been kidnapped by an underground criminal organisation in Thailand. He enlists the help of Yui (played by Park Jung Min) to find the child. At the same time, he is also on the run from Ray (played by Lee Jung Jae), whose brother he had killed during his last mission and who is determined to avenge his brother’s death.
If you can’t already tell from the synopsis above, the whole movie was really intense and there was no dull moment. Just be prepared for a complete package of brutal and bloody action scenes that ranged from stabbing to hand-to-hand close combat, mutilation to open fire, and an insane car chase.
If I were to analyze In Nam’s character, it was obvious that he was not proud of the work he did as a contract killer, and no longer had the desire to continue. He was firm in his decision to retire when he took on his last job. However, things do not go as planned, turning the whole situation more problematic than intended.
When he connected the dots and found out that he had a nine-year-old daughter, it was evident that In Nam felt a strong sense of remorse and regret. That anguish and helplessness can be felt through the decisions he then made. It was as though the sub-plot was that of a sinner seeking redemption through saving another, which is basically In Nam trying to save his daughter as a way to seek amends for his past wrongdoings. As such, he was adamant in saving the child, even at the expense of his own life.
The most memorable quote from ‘Deliver Us From Evil’ was by Ray. The translation goes:
“You know what people say the most before I kill them? That there’s no need to go to this extent.”
The phrase “Do you really need to go to this extent?” will indeed be the only thing that goes through your mind throughout the movie.
While the focus was mostly on the two leads (In Nam and Ray), Yui was an indispensable side-kick who had a pivotal role in driving the various themes in this movie.
What I liked best about ‘Deliver Us From Evil’ was how realistic it was – a great reflection of our messed up world – since the characters were constantly forced to make deals with monsters because they knew the existing power structure could not and would not protect them. ‘Deliver Us From Evil’, indeed.
While many would have argued about the ending, I felt that it was acceptable and probably for the best considering the circumstances of In Nam, Ray, and Yui.
If you are still contemplating whether or not to catch this action thriller, just a little trivia that ‘Deliver Us From Evil’ beat ‘Peninsula’ with 4.1 million viewers in 21 days and topped box office charts for three consecutive weeks, making it the No.1 summer blockbuster this year. I’d say the odds that you would enjoy the movie are pretty good.
‘Deliver Us From Evil’ opens in Singapore from 17th September 2020 (Thursday) and you can catch the movie via FilmGarde. It will also be available on Singtel and StarHub’s VOD from 1st October 2020 (Thursday).