Sore disappointment is in store for anyone expecting Won Shin-yun’s revenge/psycho thriller to emerge as the new Oldboy. Despite the presence of that film’s star (Choi Min-sik) as an unstable army vet, Aria lacks the wit, invention, terror and tension of Park Chan-wook’s instant classic.
After a boozy lunch with an attractive former student (Cha Ye-ryun), married music professor Yeong-Sun (Lee Byuongjun) heads into the countryside and tries to rape her, before being attacked by cartoon crazies who trash his new Mercedes and force them to take part in their funny games.
After an hour of OTT silliness, the tone turns nasty(ish), though the film’s neither as sadistic or gory as the title suggests. The ending, meanwhile, will leave you frustrated and/or bewildered, having little to do with what’s gone before.