Friday, June 13, 2008

Marathon ( 말아톤-2004)

Seung-woo Cho ... Cho-won
Mi-suk Kim ... Cho-won's mum
Gi-yeong Lee ... Jung-wook
Seong-hyeon Baek ... Yun Jung-won
Nae-sang Ahn ... Cho-won's dad
Mi-suk Park
Nae-sang Ahn

Marathon tells the story of the relationship between a young autistic man named Cho-Won (portrayed by Cho Seung-Woo) and his doting mother, Kyong-Sook (TV actress Kim Mi-Sook). Although Cho-Won may be twenty years old, he has only a childlike understanding of the world. He likes chocolate cookies, loves zebras, and can memorize casual conversations and TV shows. He also tends to dance in public and pass gas at the most inopportune times. While these things may seem charming or at least humorous, this behavior can get him into a lot of trouble due to his inability to understand how the rest of the world operates. Thus, his mother controls many aspects of his life in the name of "protection," a characteristic that will have further relevance to the plot as the film progresses. As a youth, Cho-Won tended to engage in self-destructive behaviors, but with the help of the special school he attends and his mother's insistence that he participate in various physical activities, his condition quickly improved. Believing that he enjoys running, Kyong-Sook enters Cho-Won into a variety of races, and soon decides that her son should compete in a marathon, hoping he'll achieve something every amateur runner dreams of: completing the race in less than three hours. But are these high ambitions for her son's benefit or her own? Does Cho-Won truly enjoy running or has he been "trained" to agree with his mother's demands?

OMG! I hit the JACKPOT! This movie was GRADE A-kobe beef! Cho Seung Woo was SPECTACULAR! Move over Dustin Hoffman....he outclassed you by 100 miles. The role was challenging having to play an autistic adult, who we learn later as the movie progresses, loves to run. I, being a runner myself, can fully understand the joy of accomplishing the goal of a marathon (even though I've never done one myself). The feel of adrenaline pumping through your body, the rush of achieving a goal, your heart racing as reality becomes a dream and vice versa, the pain and comfort of tired legs and sore feet. Yeah, I know the feeling well. Cho Seung Woo, in every form and fashion that an actor can, has established that he IS an A-class actor.

I happened upon this movie after having just watched him in Love Phobia. I think he is the best Korean film actor so far..........God bless him!

Cho Seung Woo

Cho Seung Woo Cho Seung WooCho Seung Woo

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