(2022) Korean movie – Gentleman Review : JU Ji-hoon‘s charming stage

紳探追緝令影評Gentleman Review

2022 Gentleman Review

(2022) Korean movie Gentleman Review

“Gentleman” is a Korean crime film released in 2022, directed by Kim Kyung-won and starring JU Ji-hoon, Park Sung-woong, and Choi Sung-eun. The story of “Gentleman” revolves around the president of a private detective agency who impersonates a prosecutor in order to clear his own name while solving commissioned cases.

The biggest highlight of this film is undoubtedly JU Ji-hoon himself. The entire movie feels like a stage designed to showcase his charm, especially with many scenes deliberately focusing on his expressions and teasing. For fans of JU Ji-hoon, they will definitely be captivated by his charisma.

To be honest, personally I didn’t feel particularly amazed by this film. Overall, the most regrettable aspect is the design of the plot structure which seems to have some issues. The director tells the story using an interweaving technique where the storyline alternates between “interrogation” and “execution of plans.”

However, because there isn’t clear differentiation on screen at times, it can actually be confusing as to which storyline we are currently following. Although it’s still possible to understand the story, these transitions can cause stuttering and disrupt smoothness during viewing experience resulting in a disparity in audience immersion.

The first half of “Gentleman” is mostly told through flashbacks where Hyeon-soo has already assumed the identity of a prosecutor beforehand. This was intentionally done by the director to increase suspense since initially audiences don’t know what wrongdoings Hyeon-soo has committed. In theory, such storytelling technique should make for an interesting narrative with twists; however, as I mentioned earlier, using this interweaving method only unnecessarily complicates the plot structure without adding much value.

Furthermore,”Gentleman”‘s script progresses towards later stages where viewers may find that the story seems to lack focus more and more, with various elements being mixed together in a chaotic manner. This inevitably gives the impression that the convoluted setups fail to achieve their intended effect.

So the entertainment value of “Gentleman” becomes somewhat meaningless (the action scenes lack excitement, and even though the script sets up several twists and turns, they fail to elicit any astonishment from the audience). Furthermore, the story of “Gentleman” is actually quite predictable, with clear distinctions between the antagonists and protagonists.

Therefore, even when the director reveals the truth behind Hyeon-soo’s backstory in the later part of the plot, it still lacks a significant impact. The acting in this film is not an issue; JU Ji-hoon is meant to be highlighted in this movie and he consistently appears on screen wearing clean suits exuding a strong presence and charisma. Additionally, every time a dog appears it’s so cute and eye-catching! JU Ji-hoon portrays his character’s cunning nature very well.

As for actress Choi Sung-eun’s performance, there’s no need to say much as her acting skills were already evident in her previous drama “Magical Sound”. In “Gentleman”, she not only plays a tough prosecutor but also revels in her own success. She believes she is superior to others and possesses both justice and realistic desires for promotion.

Her character is not one-dimensional at least; especially noteworthy is a scene where she has a conversation with Park Sung-woong who plays the main antagonist – viewers can deeply feel Choi Sung-eun’s formidable presence matching that of Park Sung-woong. Speaking of which, it’s quite common for actor Park Sung-woong to play villains like this; he truly fits into such twisted roles.

Overall,”Gentleman”, despite its convoluted plotline fails to bring anything fresh or exciting for audiences because it simply repeats existing crime entertainment film formulas by meticulously showcasing crime plans execution through storytelling techniques along with story structure and character development designed conservatively.

It doesn’t mean that such stories are bad or that following such formulas is not good, but the storytelling approach in “Gentleman” fails to impress. It feels like a plain execution of a plan without any surprises. Additionally, there is very little character development for supporting roles, and the audience doesn’t get a sense of tight collaboration within this team. This reminds me of “A Taxi Driver”. If the director could focus more on each team member’s work during the execution of the plan through visuals, I think it would be more thrilling and intense.

The director once said that he hoped the audience would “wish for such a person to exist in this world” after watching. Whether the director really touched your heart as an audience, I don’t know. Maybe yes, maybe no. As for me, I didn’t feel much because although JU Ji-hoon has charm in “Gentleman,” the character design or distinctive traits are not as impressive as those of “Sherlock Holmes.” It doesn’t give me much motivation to look forward to a sequel either.