Now Streaming: NIGHT IN PARADISE, Bittersweet Redemption And Violent Reprisals

Having spent more than a decade building his repetoire, actor Um Tae-goo has been on a roll lately with a few outstanding lead performances in Korean cinema; Festivalgoers in the past year might take note of Um’s 2020 starrer, Jung Hyuk-ki’s My Punch-Drunk Boxer, as a formerly prospective athlete looking to reinvent himself using his ailment.The actor’s latest outing though is currently streaming on Netflix with Park Hoon-jung’s Night In Paradise, fully vested in the companies stock of Korean content and in part with a story that invariably aims to list among the streamer’s promisingly R-rated, gritty and brutal thrillers. Par for the course is Park himself who is no stranger to bringing visceral, stimulating and harrowing thrills to the screen in titles such as New World, The Tiger and The Witch: Part 1 – The Subversion.Um plays Tae-gu, an underworld gang enforcer who decides to take matters into his own hands following a deadly tragedy at the hands of the rival Bukseong gang. With blood on his hands, he is exiled to a safehouse at Jeju Island owned by a veteran, on-his-way-out gangster named Kuto (Lee Ki-young), and his terminally-ill niece, Jae-yeon (Jeon Yeo-bin). While in limbo, Tae-gu and Jae-yeon slowly begin to acclimate themselves around one another as they both cope with their own inner-turmoil and struggles with life and with living in general, and it culminates into a jagged, otherwise budding, connection with one another, even if lofty notions of romance seem all but fleeting most of the time. Meanwhile in Seoul, Tae-gu’s boss, Yang (Park Ho-san) is stuck in a quagmire of his own as he’s forced to mitigate between Bukseong enforcer, Director Ma (Cha Seung-won), and a dirty cop forced to mediate the two parties. Director Ma is hell-bent on retaliation and wants blood no matter what, an impasse that soon puts Tae-gu in the crosshairs with loyalities tested, and truths soon to be revealed with violent reprisal.