The Exclusive: Beat The Devil’s Tattoo (Fantasia Festival Review)

serial-killer

We got treated to some fantastic Asian cinema at year’s Fantasia International Film Festival

THE EXCLUSIVE: BEAT THE DEVIL’S TATTOO

(South Korea)

The film follows a journalist who just can’t seem to catch a break. He is at the lowest point of his life and career. He drinks heavily,  is hated by everyone in his professional life, and also his personal life.

After he receives a random tip he comes in the possession of a note. This note was written by a serial-killer who is wanted for murdering 6 people.

When he shows the note to his boss he becomes front page news. He is once again on top of his game. His luck doesn’t last that long though. The police are putting pressure on him about the whereabouts of the serial-killer and they want to know how the note ended up in his possession. There’s that, but he also learns that the note he grabbed was a quote from an already published story……oops!

As you can probably imagine, it’s quite funny when the story reveals that the note is not from the serial-killer. The whole scene leading up to that moment is just filmmaking at its best. It’s not laugh-out-loud funny but the script and the main actor are just so damn good. You find yourself laughing at his misfortunes and his approach to the situations he gets himself in.

Rather than coming clean and confessing to what he has done, he takes it even further and starts to write notes and claims that they are from the serial-killer. Obviously this puts him on the radar of the actual serial- killer, but he doesn’t seem to mind as his job is on the up and he  is starting to patch things up with his pregnant girlfriend.
Beat The Devil’s Tattoo is no way near as dark as some other South Korean serial-killer movies. That don’t mean it ain’t good though, this is still a quality thriller.  The humour is well written and the lead play’s our lovable disaster to perfection.

If we strip back the serial-killer element of this movie then we have a movie that shows us how quickly things can spread in the media with little or no evidence. Not only does this work as a clever serial-killer movie with bits of comedy, but it also works as a standalone movie about the power of any media, their thirst for ratings, and the fear that is pumped through the veins of its listeners!

7/10

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