Director Moon Hyun-sung (most notably 2012’s As One) might be the most devoted fan of Edgar Wright working in South Korea, at least that’s the feeling one gets after watching Seoul Vibe (2022), his latest work for Netflix.
As the 1988 Seoul Olympics approaches, a team of talented drivers with sketchy pasts laundering money in Saudi Arabia is asked to help a prosecutor and the new government infiltrate a VIP level slush fund operation. Led by Dong-wook (Burning and Alive’s Yoo Ah-in), the Sangedong Supreme investigative team delivers the slush funds from the previous corrupt government in a set-up operation by the new government.
While Yoo is likely the film’s most recognizable name, Go Kyung-pyo (as “John Woo” Woo-sam) and Park Ju-hyun (as Yoon-hee) earn the film its run time. Both seem to be playing their roles, making the movie more fun than the more typically Hollywood acting style of Yoo (who is still good here). Woo-sam’s nickname, “John Woo,” speaks to his cool but professional demeanor, whereas Park’s natural charisma and frequent winking find support from the wardrobe department, who adorns her with Western brand crop tops, “Madonna’s funky style” mesh, and a Washington Redskins leather jacket (ripped from its social context). And like Park, the wardrobe of the entire main cast fully embraces the nostalgia for 80s Seoul, with each tokenizing a “type” of 80s young adult.
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