Ma Dong‑Seok, star of international blockbuster TRAIN TO BUSAN leads the cast in The Outlaws aka Crime City.

The film opens with a knife fight in a marketplace between rival gang members. Out of nowhere, Detective Ma (Ma Dong-Seok) makes his way through the gathering crowd of spectators. While still talking on his phone, he disarms both suspects, breaking one of their arms and forcing the other to submit his weapon in fear of getting badly hurt. All done without breaking a sweat, he continues with his phone call as if nothing happened.

We know from the opening sequence of The Outlaws that Ma Dong‑Seok is going to give us another fine performance. Dishing out bare-handed justice, his open-hand slaps are hilarious and ferocious at the same time. One thing is for sure, you won’t be getting back up off the ground if Detective Ma bitch-slaps you!.

The Outlaws

He’s a hard-as-nails, take-no-shit Detective that has an old-school approach to policing. Although, not the best upholder of the law he enforces, he is a good cop with good intentions. 

When a new Chinese gang arrive on the scene led by the heartless and evil Jang Chen (Yoon Kye-sang), body parts of other gang members start to surface. Jang Chen and his gang quickly earn a reputation due to their terrorising tactics; If anyone so much as looks at them the wrong way, they’ll hack off their limbs with an axe or stab them a 100-times in the gut or throat. 

The Outlaws offers up some great  South Korean action although nothing new it’s still hugely enjoyable. The story does feel familiar, but it’s a confident and stylish piece of filmmaking with two amazing leads performances from Yoon Kye-sang and

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The film takes place in Seoul which we all know well from SK cinema. It’s a different part of South Korea’s capital that we get to see which was a nice change. It was great to see a different side to one of my favourite filming locations.

By the rolling credits, I was nowhere near for The Outlaws to be over. It wouldn’t be a South Korean crime movie if there wasn’t a lot of violence. The Outlaws still has a significant amount of onscreen carnage but a lot of it is done off-screen. I found this an interesting approach, not showing the viewer too much. Also, a great way of keeping the budgetary requirements at bay.


Based on the “Heuksapa Incident” which happened in Guro District, Seoul, 2007. 



Gary Gamble

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