COMMITMENT (NC 16)
Action drama/113 minutes
The central character of South Korean espionage thriller Commitment is arguably the main draw of this film.
There is much hype surrounding the highly anticipated outing of the movie's leading actor Choi Seung Hyun, whose alter ego is rapper T.O.P from the massively popular K-pop boyband BigBang.
And it's easy to see why.
The wide-eyed 26-year-old hunk plays North Korean teen spy Li Myung Hoon, who is forced to become a killer to atone for the sins of his agent father.
Li and his younger sister Li Hye In (Kim Yoo Jung) are thrown into a prison labour camp after their father is framed and killed on a mission to South Korea.
It's a feast for the eyes for fans of the K-pop idol.
The charismatic Choi, with his steely gaze and swift moves, is pretty convincing as a spy-assassin.
After all, he has experience on his side. He portrayed gun-totting characters in his two previous acting projects: He was a fashionable assassin in the acclaimed espionage TV drama Iris (2009) and a precocious student-soldier in the war flick 71: Into The fire (2010).
It would be nice to see him try his hands at roles of a different genre, such as romance, to hone his emotive skills.
Commitment is largely dominated by high-octane action-packed scenes and peppered with a sprinkling of light-hearted moments.
For instance, Li gets quite the culture shock when he goes undercover as a high-school student in South Korea. He's in wide-eyed awe when he finds out how hard South Korean students study - from morning to night.
Bits and pieces of an internal power struggle among the North Korean authorities are also revealed. But one gets lost quickly in the confusing plot.
But, then again, who really cares? The plot takes a back seat in this movie.
It's really all about T.O.P.
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