J.S.A.: Joint Security Area

J.S.A.: Joint Security Area Image
Metascore
58

Mixed or average reviews - based on 7 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 21 Ratings

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  • Summary: Joint Security Area is the "Apocalypse Now" of the Korean War -- a shimmering, hyper-real epic that charts the spiritual fallout of international politics. (Subway Cinema)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 7
  2. Negative: 0 out of 7
  1. Suspenseful and psychologically rich.
  2. This warm, sorrowful film plays like a downbeat variation on an old World War II picture from Hollywood.
  3. 70
    The new English track is predictably clumsy, but the story and images overcome it.
  4. A blockbuster hit in Korea, Park's feature debut is a beguiling mix of the generic and the unfamiliar, and it ends on a shot that's nothing short of heartbreaking.
  5. Reviewed by: Derek Elley
    50
    Despite its merits, is neither an art movie nor an out-and-out, propulsive actioner like "Shiri."
  6. 50
    Scenes of the probe are less successful. They feel contrived, and actress Lee Yeong-ae is not especially effective as Major Jang.
  7. 40
    Politically, psychologically, and aesthetically schizophrenic.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 5
  2. Negative: 0 out of 5
  1. Jun 17, 2011
    10
    Simply a masterpiece of a film. A tremendous story told by Park Chan-wook. I can just encourage everybody to watch this movie and enjoy theSimply a masterpiece of a film. A tremendous story told by Park Chan-wook. I can just encourage everybody to watch this movie and enjoy the hell out of it. Expand
  2. OwenB.
    Sep 19, 2005
    10
    Fantastic. Moving, stylish and original.
  3. May 25, 2015
    8
    An utterly fantastic film, with great direction from the director of Oldboy, Park Chan Wook and fantastic performances, most notable Mr SongAn utterly fantastic film, with great direction from the director of Oldboy, Park Chan Wook and fantastic performances, most notable Mr Song Kang Ho. A tale of friendship between fellow 'brothers' on opposite sides of the Korean border. Shows a different perspective on the Korean conflict. I highly recommend this film for those getting into Korean cinema. Start with either this, Memories of Murder or The Host (Directed by Bong Joon- Ho) or The Good The Bad The Weird directed by Kim Jee- woon (You might notice all those films star Song Kang- Ho) Expand
  4. Dec 6, 2015
    8
    JSA is both a crowd pleaser and deeply sentimental film. Some people might think that it's an underdeveloped commercial film but consideringJSA is both a crowd pleaser and deeply sentimental film. Some people might think that it's an underdeveloped commercial film but considering the storyline and early direction work of Park Chan Wook, its a great effort to make film on such sensitive matter and be neutral after all.
    Every interaction of both side soldiers is so intense and convincing that one holds his breath and waits for something to go wrong as it's all in flashback. Over the years many movies have taken inspiration from NSA. Two sequences are worth praise, the first one where three soldier meet at mine field and final one when all four are by chance in one snapshot taken by a tourist. Very strong and active screenplay and very good performances.
    Expand
  5. Jan 20, 2014
    4
    JSA is a story about an unlikely friendship between soldiers on opposite sides of the Korean border. The dialog is hokey and the plot isJSA is a story about an unlikely friendship between soldiers on opposite sides of the Korean border. The dialog is hokey and the plot is contrived, but JSA might appeal to an audience that romanticizes or is emotionally invested in the conflict between the DPRK and the ROK. Expand

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