Director: Sang-ho Yeon
Writer: Joo-suk Park
Stars: Yoo Gong, Dong-seok Ma, Woo-sik Choi, Kim Su-an
When it comes to Zombie films, it seems as audiences are much like the hordes of ravenous flesh eaters. However in a now saturated market, a film needs to have something different or exceptional to stand out from the crowd. Train To Busan doesn’t offer much new in terms of zombie action but it has an emotional core that sets it aside from its brethren. The film isn’t as gory as most mass zombie films are but it doesn’t have to be, it tells a simple story well and hits the right notes.
The story is Seok-woo (Yoo Gong) is taking his daughter Su-an (Kim Su-an) to see her mother on her birthday, so they catch the train from Seoul to Busan. Only problem is that a nasty viral outbreak is spreading through South Korea and turning people into flesh eating psychos. Of course an infected person boards the train and this where things start to get interesting.
First off the acting is quite from everyone on-screen is good but without a shadow of a doubt Kim Su-an who plays the cute as button but sad as hell Su-an, is head and shoulders above everyone else. For a child, she hit every emotional beat, acting as her dad’s moral compass through much of the film. The film rides on its emotionality and it pays off in numerous moments bringing real tension and fear for the characters, Joo-suk Park has written a great film. I even shouted ‘No!’ at the screen at one stage; such was the way the film made you invest in the characters.
Sang-ho Yeon’s action sequences are kinetic and some excellent ideas such as – the infected people can’t see in the dark at all – being used to great effect with some very tense tunnel sequences. It was ambitious to set this on a train, as I thought the ideas may become limited but Yeon kept the surprises coming with some very well planned and executed sequences. However he still manages to get up close and personal in the quiet moments, which gives the film a great balance.
Train To Busan is great entry into in the zombie subgenre, it carries a message that we all could heed but it still manages to thrill and horrify in equal measure. Train To Busan is most certainly worth seeing if you’re zombie fan or not.