Two days after Spike Lee released a trippy poster for “Oldboy,” the director has revealed the first (NSFW) trailer for his adaptation of the popular manga and South Korean cult film fave. And if the preview’s any indication, the American version isn’t pulling any punches.
“Oldboy” tells the story of Joe Doucett (Josh Brolin), a man who wakes up imprisoned in a room — with no explanation. He stays there for 20 years, forced to watch television reports about the murder of his wife, a crime for which he was framed. One day, again without explanation, Joe is freed with a satchel full of cash and a whole lot of revenge to enact.
For fans of the original movie — directed by “Stoker” helmer Park Chan-wook — the concept of a remake, even by a filmmaker as respected as Lee, seemed like an impossibility. How could a mainstream American movie ever live up to the disturbing and violent nature of the original, especially that film’s shocking conclusion?
Without venturing into spoiler territory, it looks like Lee has crafted a dark vision, one that bears a striking resemblance to the Park Chan-wook film. Fans will immediately recognize a gruesome scene involving a hammer as inspired by the South Korean version’s most famous fight sequence. Moreover, a brief look at the actual scene in Lee’s film seems to hint that it may take on a similar, long-take format.
On the topic of the ending (Warning: spoilers ahead), Lee’s “Oldboy” could potentially pull off the same trick as the Korean flick. Fans familiar with that movie will notice a detail in this trailer that would hint at a different conclusion, but this could very easily be a red herring, setting up the now classic twist.
“Oldboy” also stars Elisabeth Olsen, Samuel L. Jackson, and Sharlto Copley. It’s scheduled to hit theaters on October 11.
Check out everything we’ve got on “Oldboy.”