Recently, I’ve really become obsessed with films similar to the 2003 Korean movie Oldboy.
The movie is a noir/hardboiled type movie about a Korean man who was locked in a hotel room for 10+ years, and upon his release, sets out to find whoever imprisoned him, which involves lots of ass-kicking, devouring live octopuses, detective work, and even incest.
IMDB gives it an aggregate rating of 7.1, which is about right. The film is extremely, to put it mildly, crass. The plot revolves around McAvoy’s character, Bruce Robertson, a corrupt Scottish police officer who is everything from raging alcoholic, junkie, you name it.
When he finds out there is a new promotion in line, he starts off on a campaign to smear every other person he knows and works with.
The movie involves a lot of British humor and cultural exchanges, which feel like they may be a bit lost on American audiences who do not have much experience with foreign films.
Bruce is an amazingly devious character, going so far as to steal his close “friend’s” wives, and eventually starts to lose his mind in the web of lies he creates.
Eventually, McAvoy starts crumbling in spectacular fashion, but the leadup, which includes a meteoric rise to the status of madman, is both fascinating and disgusting at the same time. This movie is not for the faint of heart, shall we say. Maybe the fact that it’s Scottish can explain the overall roughness the film radiates.
The ending was a shock akin to movies like Fight Club, and I did not see it coming at all. It’s very hard to avoid not spoiling.
If you’re a fan of detective movies, or raunchy movies, or movies that are just unapologetically brutal, then Filth is for you.