Late Autumn or Manchu (2010)

When Anna was young, she fell in love with her brother’s best friend with whom she grew up. They were a couple until he suddenly drew away.
After she got married to someone else, her ex came back to her life and wanted her to run away with him but Anna’s husband found out and hit her very badly in a fit of rage and jealousy.
She killed him and then spent Seven years in jail.
When her mother died, Anna is given a Seventy-two hours parole, so that she can attend the funeral.
On the bus, she meets Hoon, a Korean gigolo.
One of Hoon’s customers has fallen in love with him and her husband has threatened Hoon’s life so he is on the run.
Anna and Hoon are two lonely people, torn apart from the rest of the world and constantly bumping into each other.
Anna seems to be horribly depressed and distant from her family and although Hoon is constantly speaking on his cell phone, it seems to be only with the people who know or are involved with the mess that he has gotten himself into.
Even when they have the chance to open up to each other it doesn’t really happen, the connection is due to loneliness of two people in a strange city.
Since Hoon was framed, it made me think that since Anna can’t remember what has happened after her husband hit her, perhaps she was not the one who has murdered him.
There are quite a few touching scenes, like the one where Anna is telling her story to Hoon in Chinese, he is Korean and can’t understand a word she is saying but responds with Good and Bad, which are the only words that he knows in Chinese.
His responses are not always in accordance with what Anna is saying, which only highlights the distance between them.
Anna is so repressed that I can’t help but wonder what kind of a relationship she had with Wang Jing, her ex-boyfriend. Perhaps she was different then?
There is a scene where she lets her hair down, wears makeup and buys herself new clothes and earrings. I guess that this scene, comes to show us that she wasn’t always the way that we see her now, but an attractive young woman, and also to demonstrate that she is no longer this person. We can see it and she can too.
She is being dominated by men, her no good ex-boyfriend who was the cause of the whole tragedy, didn’t bother to wait for her and got married. Then he had the nerve to speak with her as if nothing has happened.
The funeral scene, where Hoon, Wang, his wife and Anna are sitting at the same table and Anna realizes that Wang’s wife doesn’t know a thing about their relationship, apart from the fact that they grew up together, is both sad and enraging.
She married a jealous husband who has made her life a living hell and then she meets Hoon who seems to be bothering her.
She is not really choosing but being carried by the wind, the murder seems to be the only thing that is her own choice but she claims that she can’t remember anything after her husband has beaten her.
It’s a dark and depressing movie, the colors are mostly cold ones – gray, black and blue, apart from Anna’s light colored coat and the clothes that she buys.
The end is not clear or certain but one can hope that Anna’s smile at the end, means that Hoon came to meet her.
It’s worth watching if you like slow paced movies. The actors are good but everything is so repressed and insinuated that you can never be sure what the characters really feel.
Is Anna interested or bothered by Hoon? Why is Hoon following Anna around? Is he in love or just playing a game with her? Did Anna really forget all that’s happened after her husband hit her?
I liked it because of its subtlety, because things are not actually being said and you have to think and get to your own conclusions but I think that some people may find it too boring to watch.

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