NewsLetter DailyWeekly
My HanCinema | Sign up, Why ? Your E-mail   Password    Auto| Help
HanCinema :: The Korean Movie and Drama Database, discover the South Korean cinema and drama diversity Contact HanCinema HanCinema on TwitterFaceBook HanCinema PageHanCinema on Twitter

[Guest Review] "Musa"


"Musa" is one of the most expensive productions in the history of Korean cinema (it was the most expensive when it first screened, in 2001) and one of those films that turned the global audience towards the country. Based on historical facts, with an attention to detail that even resulted in each protagonist using his tribe's language, and featuring a great cast of Korean actors plus Zhang Ziyi, "Musa" is a truly impressive film.

The story takes place in 1375 China, where Ming dynasty has just succeeded Yuan. The respective Korean one, Koryo, wishes to strengthen its relationship with the new rulers, and towards that purpose, sends an envoy to the Ming court. Unfortunately, the diplomats are obstructed in their mission to deliver their message and subsequently are accused as spies and exiled in a remote desert.

The script focuses on the adventures of this team, as they try to cross the desert and reach their country, amidst extremely harsh conditions and the continuous attacks by the Yuan. Four characters stand apart: Young general Choi-jung, ex-slave turned bodyguard Yeo-sol, low-ranking veteran Jin-lib, and Ming princess, Bu-yong, who is added to the company after she is rescued from the Yuan. A love triangle eventually is shaped among her, Choi-jung and Yeo-sol.

Kim Seong-su focuses chiefly on the action, putting aside the rest of the story's aspects and particularly the romantic relationships, which are not developed at all. On the other hand, the characters' analysis is thorough, considering the nature of the film.

The various battles are impressive as they are realistic, benefitting the most from Kim Hyun's editing and Kim Hyung-koo's cinematography, which also presents images of beauty in various surroundings, including desert, forests and rivers.

In the protagonist roles, Joo Jin-mo is mediocre as Choi-jung, Jung Woo-sung rarely talks and mostly fights as Yeo-sol, Ahn Sung-ki gives the best performance in the film as Jin-lib, and Zhang Ziyi acts relatively good as Princess Bu-yong, although her part mostly involves her looking fragile and beautiful, something she accomplishes with ease. In general, the actors chiefly service the action, as is the case, usually, in similar films.

"Musa" is a very entertaining film, despite its lack of depth, which stands apart from the plethora of action movies due to its attention to historical detail and realism.

Review by Panos Kotzathanasis



"Musa" is directed by Kim Seong-su and features Ahn Sung-ki, Jung Woo-sung, Joo Jin-mo and Zhang Ziyi.


Available on DVD from YESASIA

DVD HK (En Sub)
DVD HK (En Sub)

Copy & paste guideline for this article
Always put a link back to the source and HanCinema permalink

Creative Commons License"[Guest Review] "Musa" "
by HanCinema is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.

Related movies/dramas

Attention You're reading the news with potential spoilers, make them spoiler free, dismiss



 Previous news

Subscribe to HanCinema Pure to remove ads from the website (not for episode and movie videos) for US$0.99 monthly or US$7.99 yearly (you can cancel anytime). The first step is to be a member, please click here : Sign up, then a subscribe button will show up.


Remove ads

Sign up




Visible, hide

Learn to read Korean in 90 minutes or less using visual associations