Where’s the spirit of rock today?
A civil servant in Seoul finds himself involved in an indie rock band.
SEOUL, MY LOVE
Dangerously Excited is an independent movie using the local specifity of South Korea to tell a follow-your-dream type of story. At the core of the film, there’s one of these low level city government employees helping to solve local problems, without really getting involved in the community.
Knowing that the city of Seoul is changing fast, some districts are attracting a new population – for ex, in the film, it’s the youth. The consequences? Higher housing prices, problems between neighbours, housing scams… Everything is good to break people’s dreams?
THINGS HAVE CHANGED
The film explores two different worlds. On one side, there’s an employee happily stuck in a daily routine, spending his days working at the bare minimum, and his nights, watching TV. A man who reads a lot to give the impression he knows many things, when in reality, he doesn’t experiment anything. The perfect example of a “a status-quo man.” On the other side, young musicians dreaming of a breakthrough, working small jobs to pay for their instruments/the rehearsal place, and spending nights rehearsing for an upcoming concert.
And naturally, when these two worlds collide, it reveals each side’s contradictions, sometimes it’s funny, sometimes it’s not. But overall, Dangerously Excited is really a light-hearted film. By the way, the title reflects exactly the whole idea between this “collision” – it’s about taking a risk, on a group level and individually, with this employee forced to forget his no-life principles.
Besides the actor Yoon Je-moon being grumpy, the direction of Dangerously Excited is impressive as it offers lots of various ideas. It can be didactic & fast-paced, like in the introduction that sums up the spirit of the main character, who is stuck in a little office and knows exactly what’s happening all around – cool editing job here. It can be more intimate, when it’s necessary to show the band’s unity. Quite late in the film, there’s even some split-screens to underline the weirdness of the band…
While director Koo Ja-hong is doing a nice work, even though sometimes he tends to overdo it – jump cuts + fast-paced editing during one of the most important discussions of the story, it looks a bit off – the film has some flaws. The musical scenes are dull, the script is overlong and doesn’t explore the other members of the band – annoying & shallow youngsters only defined by their love for music & the fact they play it… what about their daily/personal problems? After all, they’re taking a risk.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Dangerously Excited is engaging enough to be interesting the whole time. Even though the script is quite limited, the film presents a nice main character, a light-hearted mood, a story about friendship & self-discovery, and Koo Ja-hong’s inspiring direction — 5/10.
AKA Uiheomhan Heungbun, 나는 공무원이다