By Brett Mullins
Directed and Screenplay by Chan-wook Park
Thirst is a Korean film from prolific director Chan-wook Park that can be best described as a vampire tragedy. A confused yet good natured Roman Catholic priest volunteers for a medical experiment that, despite a last minute blood transfusion, ends his life. That is before he rises moments later and is subsequently stricken with a thirst for blood.
This film is divided into two story arcs. The first is the tale of a man of the cloth who contracts vampirism and is faced with a moral dilemma as he comes to terms with his condition. The second shares many elements initially with Twilight (or any other romance of that sort for that matter) and deals with conflicting views of ethics and humanity. As one reviewer noted, there is a lot going on under the surface that sets the film apart from other entries in the sub-genre.
Kang-ho Song’s portrayal as the priest is ambiguous enough such that nearly anyone in the audience can identify with his character; most of us think of ourselves as somewhat good natured.
Thirst sports a runtime of over two hours which results in some lagging during the first half. Despite this, Thirst presents a different approach to the vampire and rewards the audience with a satisfying conclusion.