Tidal Wave (2009) Blu Ray Jul 18, 2010 10:47:27 GMT -5
Post by Erik Rupp on Jul 18, 2010 10:47:27 GMT -5
Who doesn't like a good disaster film?
When done well (Towering Inferno, The Poseidon Adventure, etc), they can be very entertaining.
Last year's 2012 was about as over the top as a disaster film could get, but it never let up, so despite it's flaws it was still entertaining. Well, there was another disaster film out last year that was a huge hit in it's home country. That film was South Korea's Tidal Wave.
Tidal Wave's special effects are very well done. Perhaps a bit dated (the CGI, while well done, does have a certain late 90's early 00's look to it), but still effective and believable. There are some exciting scenes invoving the disaster portion of the story, so the weaknesses in the movie lie elsewhere.
Those weaknesses lie mainly in the first 70 or so minutes of the film. For that time it spends about 65 minutes on the characters and their relationships. That's not necessarily a bad thing in and of itself, but in this case probably half of that 70 minutes could have (and should have) been cut. Few of the characters are truly likeable, not even the characters that are supposed to be. The dialogue is hit or miss, and there are, frankly, just too many characters given too much screen time.
In trying to give the viewer a closer look at the daily lives of the people who are going to be affected by the impending disaster the movie lacks focus. The film is set in the beach resort city of
Haeundae, and the central characters are all locals. This is a booming tourist city with a beautiful (if overcrowded) beach, and for the locals a big goal is to have a shop or a restaurant of their own. Another big industry is fishing, and two of the characters are former fishermen (having lost their ship to the tsunami from the 2004 earthquake in Southeast Asia).
There are a lot of character details going on, and it's easy to lose track of the names of all the characters involved (and not just because they're Korean names). There are just too many characters in the movie, and as noted before, most of them aren't particularly likeable. The characters are written in a somewhat juvenile fashion, making it hard to really care about them.
Had they cut the characters given significant screen time in half the movie might have worked better. And had they limited the character drama and comedy parts to about 40 minutes the film definitely would have been better. When the comedic bits work much better than the drama presented there is clearly a problem with the script, and that is the case here. There are some genuinely funny parts in the movie before the tsunami hits, and there are some good character moments as well - but not enough of them to justify the amount of screen time given to the drama. And that's a shame, because this is a gorgeous movie visually, and there is a really good disaster movie here just dying to be let out.
Unfortunately the script and the editing reduce Tidal Wave to being merely a decent way to pass the time. It's a good rental, more or less.
The picture and sound quality of the blu ray, well, that's another matter altogether.
This is a beautiful blu ray. The picture is crisp, it is clean, and the colors pop. This is a great example of how a blu ray can look significantly better than a DVD. The sound is good as well, maybe not as good as the picture (particularly with the English dub), but it's still good. There are also several featurettes and other special features on the disc, so Magnet/Magnolia did a great job with the blu ray release itself.
What do we have? An ok movie with a very good blu ray release.
Movie - 3/5
Blu Ray - 4/5