By Kim Young-Jun, the director who brought you the epic martial arts movie, comes a touching drama about the unconditional love that two men have for their daughter. This is a Korean drama about a man serving a life sentence for murder is given ten-days leave to be with his daughter who has contracted a rare illness and is in desperate need of a liver transplant.
Title: His Last Gift, Last Present
Other Names: 마지막 선물 (Majimak Seonmul)
Genre: Science Drama
Director: Young-Jun Kim
Cast: Kim Yeong-joon, Jo Soo-min, Kwon Oh-jung, Hur Joon-ho, Ha Ji-won
Running Time: 1hrs 45mins
I guess this one is a bit over due. Where can I start? Korean cinema is notorious for melodramas. And here is a great story that really appeals to the emotions. Once in a while I don’t mind watching these kinds of movies, it’s especially a needed break from comedies that I try to watch a lot of. I heard a lot about this movie actually, the plot was very attention grabbing and the trailer was also very interesting. A little girl in dire need of a kidney that she can only acquire from a prisoner; who finds out that she is actually his daughter. What more is there to say that can depict how melodramatic this flick will be? Although it may seem that this is all to the movie, there’s a lot more as well as a couple of action packed scenes and some subtle comic instances, but I guess you’ll just have to watch it to find out how everything unfolds.
Kang Tae-Ju is a prisoner who is given ten days parol so that he can give his kidney to his high school friend’s daughter. His high school friend Cho Young-Woo, is a single parent taking care of his daughter Cho Sae-Hee, who has Wilsons Disease and is in desperate need for a kidney. Kang Tae-Ju at first doesn’t really care for the girl, but when he finds out that she is in-fact his daughter he becomes more serious about saving her life. With all the financial troubles that Cho Young-Woo is in, will they be able to save the daughter who is so important to them?
Not much left to say about this movie. A lot of the focus is the feelings that develop inside the prisoner, Kang Tae-Ju, towards his daughter, as well as his relationship with the cop, Cho Young-Woo. We are given glimpses into the two men’s lives that clarify not only their relationship with each other, but also their relationship with the girl. As the movie starts, we see that Kang Tae-Ju is not really that interested in saving the little girl as much as he is in getting back into his old lifestyle as he plans to escape. However we are then introduced to the determination that Cho Young-Woo has to save his daughter. He does everything he can to ensure that Kang Tae-Ju’s liver will reach the appropriate condition in order for it to be ready to be used as a transplant.
When Kang Tae-Ju realizes that Cho Sae-Hee is actually his daughter, his whole attitude towards the situation changes. He wants to do anything and everything he can to help save her. At one point he is even about to eat powdered maggots, which is said to be good for the liver, which contributes to some of the subtle comedy in the movie.
There isn’t enough (or that much) I can say to bring justice to this movie, its one of those movies that you just have to watch. Not that its action packed, or that there are too many twist resulting in a possibility of completely ruining the movie for everyone, it’s the execution by the director and the acting, which in my opinion was excellent, that cinches the whole experience. That’s not to say though that action and twists are nonexistent in His Last Gift. Just watch it.
I give this a 9/10.
You can buy His Last Gift from Yes Asia.