Directed by: Choi Dong-hoon
Written by: Choi Dong-hoon
Starring: Gianna Jun, Lee Jung-jae, Ha Jung-woo, Oh Dal-soo, Cho Jin-woong, Choi Deok-moon
Assassination is a meticulously crafted film crammed with diverse elements, including sumptuously detailed set design, goofy slapstick humour, and even a meet cute. Best of all, there’s a kickass heroine (complexly realised by Gianna Jun). Dong-hoon’s screenplay constantly surprises, though more often with sudden bursts of brutally soundtracked gory violence than through its narrative of double-crossing spies.
All of this comes at a price: the exhausting runtime. Bravura camerawork, flawlessly executed fight choreography and effective music soften the blow, but a further edit could have made the Shakespearean familial tragedy at its core even more powerful.
Although the convoluted plot is at times headache-inducing, Assassination impresses with its many setpieces, executed in just 24 days of shooting, and fascinatingly considers duplicity, identity, and determination.