Released on July 22, 2016, ‘Train to Busan‘ is a South Korean action horror film directed by Yeon Sang-ho. But what exactly makes this film stand out among other zombie films? Let’s see if it’s a must-watch.
The Film’s Premise
Set against the backdrop of a zombie apocalypse, the film unfolds mostly on a KTX train from Seoul to Busan. The story revolves around Seok-woo (Gong Yoo), a workaholic father, and his young daughter, Su-an (Kim Su-an). Their journey, intended to be a simple train ride to Busan, quickly escalates into a desperate fight for survival against a horde of fast and ferocious zombies.
The film’s reception has been notably strong. It grossed $98.5 million worldwide, becoming the highest-grossing film of the year in South Korea and setting records in Malaysia, Hong Kong, and Singapore. This commercial success was matched by critical acclaim, with Train to Busan holding a 94% positive rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a Metacritic score of 72.
Is ‘Train To Busan’ Worth Your Time?
One of the things that makes ‘Train to Busan’ stand out is its approach to the zombie genre. It’s not just about mindless gore; the film blends themes of humanity and social responsibility. It explores how crises can bring out both the worst and the best in people, which is a narrative pivot from traditional zombie films that often focus solely on survival and fear.
The film also has an effective pacing, engaging construction, and a balanced blend of horror and character development. The emotional depth of the movie is highlighted, especially in the performance of the young actress Kim Su-an. The finale of the film has a powerful emotional impact which leaves a lasting impression on audiences.
Besides, some of the film’s unique elements, such as the absence of traditional weapons and the use of the environment for survival strategies, provide a fresh take on the genre.