My Way Review
Ryan Revolver


When the world was at war for a second time, many courageous stories died with the young men being killed on battlefields on nearly every continent. Lucky for us, this incredible story survived.

In 1938 Japanese-occupied Korea, two young men contend with each other via marathons. Kim Joon-Sik (Jang Dong-gun) is Korean, and trains by pulling a rickshaw, hoping someday getting to the Olympics like his hero Sohn Kee-chung. His rival from Japan, Tatsuo Hasegawa (Joe Odagiri) is from a prominent family who employed Joon-Sik’s family as servants. Joon-Sik is forced into the military, and sent to the front lines to fight for Japan against the Soviet Union, where Hasegawa has acquired the rank of captain.

My Way shows the harsh and brutal practices that countries accepted as policy when dealing with troops and POW’s. Japanese, Soviet, and Nazi officers were protecting ideologies that their country’s leaders held sacred; while trying to find bodies to fill boots and shoot rifles. Those in the mud suffered the most. The battle scenes are quite graphic, and depict the severe “no retreat policy”. This film is the Korean equivalent of Saving Private Ryan, just more gory. Besides just being a movie about war, it serves as a deeper look at mankind. As Joon-Sik and Hasegawa get farther from home, the less important there once completive-nature becomes. Survival is the most important thing for the two, despite whatever uniform they are forced to wear at the moment. Also explored in My Way is how Japanese officers looked down at their Korean troops as inferior and stupid. This theme does not pause even during a full out attack.

During some scenes, the lighting brightness would change in between cuts that caused some annoyance for me. This is not the best foreign movie of all time, but it is interesting seeing the journey for the two men from Korea to Normandy Beach. The most expensive Korean movie of all time did not excite other real critics, but as the “World’s Worst Movie Critic” I find My Way a movie that I would watch again without hesitation. Movies about WWII always hook me in. 

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