Netflix’s The Carter makes The Gray Man look like a breeze

There are thousands and thousands of action movies out there, and yet virtually none deliver the sheer gonzo pandemonium of The carter, a film of such bravura showmanship that it feels like it’s actively shaming its genre brethren with each successive set piece. The Prior by South Korean director Jung Byung-gil The villainess was his own masterpiece of brutality, and from a purely technical point of view his latest work is so stunningly impressive that it finally establishes the author as the king of inventive madness. If you subscribe to Netflix and enjoy being blown away for over two hours straight, this import is for you.

The carter (available now) follows Carter (Joo Won), an imposing man who wakes up in a motel room with amnesia and a strange cross-like scar at the base of his neck. He’s also lying in a blood-soaked bed surrounded by a squad of American CIA agents who want to know what he’s up to with Dr. Jung (Jung Jae-young), a scientist who was in the hostage video Carter apparently sent to the Americans. dr Jung is of international importance because he is on the verge of developing a vaccine against a zombie-like outbreak that is decimating both North Korea and the United States. Jung’s infected daughter Ha-na (Kim Bo-min) is immune to this viral plague and holds the key to her cure, and Carter – who learns his name from a cryptic voice in his head that turns out to be Han Jung – hee ( Jeong So-ri), a North Korean agent, is tasked with rescuing the girl so North and South Korea can continue their joint efforts to end this nightmare.

Despite this relatively simple synopsis, as well as familiar faces in US stars Mike Colter and Camilla Belle, The carter is not a narratively clear story. The screenplay, written by Jung and co-writer Jung Byeong-sik, eschews rapid-fire clip portrayal while the true nature of Carter’s identity and allegiances remains nebulous – a twist in keeping with the film’s desire, dogged by its protagonist’s perspective to capture and experience, anytime. We’re as confused as he is, not to mention shaken and overwhelmed by the battle, leaving him bruised and bruised. From leaping out of his motel window, to battling hordes of opponents in a bathhouse (wearing only a G-string) to escaping pursuers on a motorbike, the action gets off to a scorching start, all captured by guys incomparable camera whose acrobatic skill and ingenuity is so exceptional that it deserves an Oscar for exceptional achievement, if not a Nobel Prize for historic, media-changing innovations.

The carter flies in, over, under and through cars and trucks at breakneck speeds, zooms through city streets and narrow passageways with crazy drone freedom, and switches back and forth between third and first person POVs with adrenaline-pumping momentum. Furthermore, Jung’s film is constructed as a faux single-take affair, using a bevy of covert editing to stitch his scenes together into one uninterrupted roller coaster ride. Those seams show up, just as the director’s numerous CGI effects – for green screen backgrounds, explosions and incessant acts of superhuman power – are patently wrong. The same is true for the jerky movement of Jung’s camera, which doesn’t opt ​​for fluidity, but instead a digitally enhanced lurching/bobbing/whooshing/exploding quality that is a by-product of post-production manipulation. However, the artificiality is functional; Jung craves the hyperrealism of video game cutscenes, in which the laws of physics (and the limitations of traditional cinematography) are discarded in favor of perpetual motion machines, incessant ultra-violence, and astounding aesthetic boldness.

The carter does so many impossible things (human and cinematic) that it proves an exercise in pure, unbridled ante-upping flair. Dangling from planes, trains, taxis, and military helicopters, Carter is a simultaneously muscular and rubbery man of chaos, defined not by his (empty) personality but by his actions, which include pogo-jumping between various biker assailants heard during a frantic freeway chase, tussling with an enemy and attempting to save Ha-na as they free fall (without a parachute) from an exploding plane, and finally crawl over a chopperless helicopter while going 360 degrees -Performs flips and spins and another angry antagonist tries to blow off his head. A blitzkrieg of combat, gunfights, vehicle crashes and carnage that moves at borderline fast-forward speeds yet periodically dives into slow-mo to offer a better view of the carnage, it’s on par with the greatest action film acid trip of all time.

“A blitzkrieg of combat, gunfights, vehicle crashes and carnage that moves at borderline fast-forward speeds yet periodically dives into slow-mo to offer a better view of the carnage, it’s on par with the greatest action film acid trip of all time.”

It does not matter The carter is routinely difficult to decipher; his crazy style is his substance. Formal imagination gushes from his blood-stained pores, so even his reverent nods to his Hollywood influences — including The Matrix, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doomand point break (to name just three) – play like insane remixes. With Carter being bossed around (ie controlled) by the mysterious woman in his ear, and with the details of his propulsive mission being less crucial than the thrill of his relentless showdowns, the film feels like a live-action PlayStation title brought to life. And if his flourishes don’t make much logistical sense — whether it’s Carter and his company defying gravity with every jump, somersault, and fall, or Carter (and the audience) spying through a sniper rifle’s telescope on a conversation that’s taking place in a remote base – they’re so inspired and cool it doesn’t matter.

Although it occasionally pauses to catch its breath (and to narrate more convoluted dialogue to stressed viewers), The carter is exhausting in the best possible way, jostling and bludgeoning its way towards increasingly insane scenarios. It must have taken Jung years to choreograph the myriad cinematic and physical maneuvers required for this endeavor, leaving one yearning for a comprehensive behind-the-scenes video showing just how far the director went to make his to realize crazy dream. At the same time, however, the magic of this insane film lies in its ability to deal with its own inauthenticity and still amaze by pulling off stunts that, at first glance, don’t seem feasible with real flesh-and-blood people. In other words, I don’t know how the heck he made almost everything, but I know I’ll watch it again soon. Netflix’s The Carter makes The Gray Man look like a breeze


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