Warning: Do Not Play (2019)
Dir- Kim Jin-won
A young filmmaker struggling to make a horror movie is drawn to a legend of a student film that was banned after some people died when it premiered. The search for this movie and the obsession of the young director is the focus of the film Warning: Do Not Play. Directed by Kim Jin-won and starring Seo Ye-ji as Mi-Jung, Warning: Do Not Play is more mystery than horror but does borrow elements of popular Asian horror films such as Ringu and Lights Out. The movie appears to be told in a usual fashion. A series of flashbacks reveal that the story we see might be more than just a simple mystery as Mi-Jung discovers that her quest for the horror movie may be more hazardous mentally than physically. Director Jin-won's previous film The Butcher was a brutal found footage film, yet this film is less gory and a more traditional ghost story. The movie does have a great opening that sets up the events but loses steam until the end, which may confuse some viewers. With so many outstanding Korean horror films released in recent years, it is disappointing that Warning: Do Not Play does not have the impact of a movie such as Train to Busan or I Saw the Devil. It instead follows in the path of Japanese horror films with its ghost centered story. It certainly is a decent film in its own right, but it will not stand out too much compared to its contemporaries.