My Take – This South Korean film is in no way original & the story is almost forgettable since it’s been done to death! From the director of “The Man From Nowhere” , this film is nearly a similar movie but shot on an entirely different canvas. It has the same typical protagonist or anti-hero with a vague background that gets slowly revealed and starts developing a conscience after botching his last assignment when he accidentally kills an innocent child. He is then hired to go after the child’s mother but can’t bring himself to do it after he starts developing feelings for her and races to save her from his and her employers. But If you have enjoyed watching “The Man From Nowhere” (which I loved),you will most likely enjoy this as well.
It’s not nearly as flawless as “The Man From Nowhere” but it sure has its own moments, especially the action sequences! The bloody and brutal fight/shooting scenes gets your adrenaline pumping throughout the movie. The night shots of Los Angeles are especially gorgeous which reminded me of Michael Mann’s signature visual shots of Los Angeles in his flawless crime thrillers, “Heat” and “Collateral”. The problem with this film in comparison to “The Man From Nowhere” are the lack of character developments! In “The Man From Nowhere”, you actually cared about the characters and what the protagonist goes through to save his neighbor’s child. Here, it is almost nonexistent since the action sequences leave no time for them to get acquainted. However, both use the exact same format of revealing the protagonists’ past that made them become who they were and it is also effectively done here.
I came to care about the protagonist, as soon as his past is revealed, but there should’ve been more between the killer and mother. The ending was also disappointing since it wasn’t clear what really happens to everyone. But the final scene was a good way to end the movie on a tragic note which pretty much explains the title of the movie. Overall, it’s not as good as “The Man From Nowhere” in terms of plot and character development, but “No Tears for the Dead” is nevertheless another enjoyable entry from its director.
Director – Jeong-beom Lee
Rated – NR
Run Time – 116 minutes