Train to Busan Synopsis: While a zombie virus breaks out in South Korea, passengers struggle to survive on the train from Seoul to Busan.
Release Date: July 20th, 2016 | Runtime: 1 hr 58 min | Coolthulhus Earned: 5
Train to Busan Review
I realized that even though I’ve talked about Train to Busan a few times on various posts, I’ve never actually written up a review. Time to rectify that!
Train to Busan is a South Korean zombie flick that is, as the name might imply, set almost entirely on a train or in train stations. It follows two main characters in the form a father Seok-Woo ( Yoo Gong ) and his daughter Soo-An (played by Su-An Kim). Dong-seok Ma also plays a sizable role as well, as a husband (Sang-hwa) traveling with his pregnant wife. Everyone, even the secondary characters, do a great job in their respective roles. At the beginning of the movie, you don’t particularly care for Seok-Woo, but watching him realize what’s really important and grow as a father means by the end of the film you’re firmly rooting for his survival. Though, to be honest, I definitely liked Dong-seok better. He was a bit on the adorable side with his devotion to his wife, and that along with some of the tough guy moves he pulls had me cheering.
Train to Busan is a perfect example of taking a monster that has almost lost it’s appeal because of market saturation, and still turning out a flick you can’t help but be interested in. There’s nothing really new in it, and the usual cast of characters are present, including the rich selfish CEO type person that you can’t wait to see get bit. The zombies in Train to Busan are fairly typical. Not very bright, easy to distract, and such. Of course, given that people need to be able to navigate through the cars, the director works in a nice twist the humans can take advantage of.
I think one of the appeals of Train to Busan for me is that it’s not a ‘loud’ movie. It’s not dependent on loud noises for jump scares, shrill screams, etc. And even though there are several shots of bloodied zombies, and such, the gore factor isn’t particularly high. It’s much more focused on the survivors and how they deal with the situation. In most cases, that would annoy me. I tend to dislike movies where there’s less focus on the zombies and more on the characters, but in this movie, it works, unlike certain television shows that have become daytime soaps with the occasional bloody death and zombie fight.
Train to Busan is the zombie film I would (and do) recommend from the last decade. It’s well-acted, the perfect length, and filled with action. And that ending? Perfection.