Thirst is a South Korean movie from 2009, directed by Chan-Wook Park. The only other movie of his that I’ve seen was Oldboy, and that was fucking great. Full of beatings, amnesia, incest, murder, and mayhem, it was a cinematic treat and a delight for all ages. Thirst, however, is none of those things.
This is technically a vampire movie, although you wouldn’t really know it until about halfway through. The pacing is so goddamn lethargic that virtually nothing happens for the first hour. A Catholic priest named Sang-hyun is inadvertently infected with some kind of vampire blood during a transfusion (I thought hospitals screened for that kind of stuff), and slowly transforms over the course of the movie. But it takes so fucking long, and they try to portray it as realistically as possible, that it isn’t interesting at all. It’s like they were trying to make the Batman Begins of vampire movies. LOL OH LOOK IT’S SO REALISTIC IT’S TOTALLY PLAUSIBLE THAT THIS COULD HAPPEN IN THE REAL WORLD LOL.
I’m sorry, but fuck you. Nobody wants to watch a “realistic” vampire movie. We want to watch vampires drink blood, act evil, get staked, and have sex with lots of hot women. That’s pretty much it. We don’t want to watch the slow, thoughtful, ponderous transformation of a douche-bag to a vampire.
The biggest fucking cliche in vampire movies is a character who was just transformed and refuses to feed on humans. Or at least refuses to kill humans. Unfortunately, that cliche is the main fucking character in this piece of shit. We watch him as he mopes around like a dipshit, sneaking into hospitals, and drinking blood out of IVs. He never kills anybody throughout the entire course of the movie. Some fucking vampire. ZZZzzzZZZzzzZZZ.
Sang-hyun is in love with a girl named Tae-ju. They both want each other, but the problem is she’s married to a cocksucker named Kang-woo. They have an affair, and have what was quite possibly the most awkward sex scene in cinematic history. The director may have been going for awkward because the priest probably is sexually inexperienced, but I don’t really think that was the intent. That aspect isn’t really conveyed. During the first sex scene, Sang-hyun bites Tae-ju, and she gets off on being bitten. He is taken aback by this and watches her writhing around screaming in ecstasy saying some bullshit like “LOL IS IT NORMAL TO THINK THIS FEELS SO GOOD LOL?!” The scene is poorly constructed and painful to watch.
Later on, Sang-hyun and Tae-ju decide to kill her husband. They drown him on a night-time fishing trip. The police spend about 5 seconds investigating and then close the case. NO BODY? NO PROBLEM! LET’S JUST BELIEVE THE STORY THAT HE GOT DRUNK AND DROWNED AND NOT SUSPECT THESE OTHER TWO PEOPLE OF MURDER!
After that, the movie devolves into a weird amalgamation of contradictory bullshit. Sang-hyun and Tae-ju are haunted by Kang-woo’s ghost. The ghost really hams it up by smiling goofily, spitting up water, flooding the apartment, and getting in on a threesome between the two main characters. Honestly, what the fuck? Up until this point the movie had been slow and brooding and painfully serious, and suddenly it’s a zany Farrelly Brother’s comedy. And is this supposed to be a vampire movie or a ghost movie? Pick a fucking tone and stick with it, assholes.
Some more weird and stupid shit happens later. Sang-hyun eventually turns Tae-ju into a vampire. They jump around the city in some really crappy CGI sequences. Kang-woo’s mother goes catatonic, and the two vampires continue to take care of her. (They are so sweet and loving, after all.) Tae-ju kills people because it’s fun, and Sang-hyun gets mad at her for that. Eventually, the big climax of the movie comes during a weekly Mahjong match.
Kang-woo’s mother is catatonic but she has seen the two vampires murder people and knows they killed her son. She uses her eyes and one working fingers to communicate to the other Mahjong players that Sang-hyung and Tae-ju are killers. Of course, this being a stupid fucking movie, the other players are able to figure out her message in about 2 minutes. And of course, this being a stupid fucking movie, they instantly believe it. Afterwards, Tae-ju kills everybody. Sang-hyun is fed up, and decides their lives as vampires have run their course.
He invites Tae-ju on a drive out to the middle of nowhere with Kang-woo’s mother. Why they brought her along makes no goddamn sense. They drive to the ocean and wait for sunrise. Tae-ju fights him, but ultimately she fails and they both burn up in the sun. But not before we are treated to some more awesome shots of the CGI ocean! Hells yeah! I’d much rather watch a shitty, cheap CGI ocean than a shot of the real thing. It probably costs way more to film the ocean than to create a digital version of one, right?
Anyway, this movie sucks huge balls. Although the running time is about 2 hours, it felt like 4. It took so fucking long for anything to happen, I wondered if there was a point to this movie. Finally, when something actually happened (i.e. the murder of the husband), the tone shifted from moribund to WACKY HIJINX, and then had a completely absurd, convenient, and lolretarded Hollywood-style ending.
Fuck this movie.