Pop singer, Choi Hyun (Kim Jae Joong) is held hostage in a gaudy hotel room by incompetent contract killer, Bong Min Jung (Song Ji Hyo). Also in the same hotel are a group of bickering cops on stakeout for infamous assassin, Jackal. Add some obnoxious hotel employees, a stalker, plus a conniving company president and his wife, and the results are not as wacky as they sound.
Junggugeo Kaenada 중국어 캐나다: ★★
Only 만: ★★.5
Junggugeo Kaenada 중국어 캐나다: I just saw the trailer for Code Name: Jackal again, and I laughed. I also shed a single tear, because the movie did not live up to the trailer.
Only 만: When we were talking about doing this review, I mentioned that I didn’t have much to say about it, since it didn’t leave much of an impression, aside from some really funny scenes. That said, should we hit the positives before we move on to the negatives?
Junggugeo Kaenada: Yes, let’s. Kim Jae Joong has obviously improved his acting since I saw him in “Protect the Boss”. He was actually quite funny in this one. Song Ji Hyo also had good comedic timing. The two of them played well off each other.
Only: Their scenes together were the highlight of the movie for me, especially in terms of laughs. And yes, having sat through the whole of “Triangle”, I can attest to Kim Jae Joong’s improved acting skills. It was nice to see him pull off a comedy.
Junggugeo Kaenada: If only the movie had concentrated on contract killer, Bong Min Jung, and her Hallyu hostage, Choi Hyun, then it would have been more focused. Instead, we were forced to spend time on a stakeout with a group of incompetent cops in a seedy motel turned hotel. And, there was an overly convoluted story behind the Jackal’s motives.
Only: The cops were the weak link for me. It seemed like they were there to fill space. Remove them, or spend less time on them, and you could still have a decent comedy between Kim Jae Joong and Song Ji Hyo.
As for the caper elements, it felt like they were tacked on at the end to justify putting a tied-up Choi Hyun and a knife-wielding Bong Min Jung in a room together. But since I enjoyed the two of them in a room together, I’ll try not to overthink it.
Junggugeo Kaenada: The best scene of the movie by far was the one where Choi Hyun is trying to convince Bong Min Jung that he is a cheap impersonation of himself, and therefore, the wrong target. He frantically sings off key, then lets his gut hang out so that it is unrecognizable from the six pack shown in Choi Hyun’s glamour shots.
If only the writers and the director trusted the lead couple to carry the movie on their own. Their safety net of the incompetent cops was what dragged the entire movie down.
What are we supposed to read into the ending? A sequel? A death wish on the part of Choi Hyun? The way Bong Min Jung ended the call from Choi Hyun, I wasn’t sure if it was dangerous flirtation, or exasperation leading to a practical disposal.
Only: I didn’t feel the urge to give it that much thought. I would say it’s sequel baiting, though; contract killers never really retire in the movies.