Fans of Keanu Reeves may want to tune into The Divine Fury. After all, this South Korean horror-thriller feels inspired by John Wick’s fight choreography and Constantine’s freaky gothic imagery.
MMA fighter Yong-hu (Park Seo-joon) has been conflicted over his faith ever since his father was killed in a peculiar accident. However, his doubtfulness disarms him as an adult; making his vulnerability a target for strange forces to manipulate him. After witnessing some scary parallels to his former Christian faith, Yong-hu confides in a priest, Father Ahn (Ahn Sung-Ki). A constant string of demonic possessions and attacks inevitably bridges devout beliefs and skepticism for this unlikely pair.
For as ambitious and action-packed as The Divine Fury is, it’s not exactly a rip-roaring good time. Though the film has jaw-dropping, hard-boiled fights with incredible special effects, this unsubtle film spins itself in circles leading up to those fantastic scenes. The characters are not particularly challenging despite their personal struggles, and writer/director Joo-hwan Kim likes to meander on the film’s horror elements; almost as though he’s having too much fun watching his own movie. To Kim’s credit, The Divine Fury is really scary and thrilling. The film also doesn’t skimp out on any creatures, kills, or blood.
While I wish I was more enthusiastic about the movie, I can understand why horror hounds – most notably those interested in possession films – would still gravitate towards The Divine Fury and embrace it. It isn’t afraid to pull punches, in several ways.
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Addison Wylie: @AddisonWylie