The Tower, a 2012 Korean disaster film, dramatizes a fire that breaks out in a luxury skyscraper in central Seoul on Christmas Eve. It’s Die Hard meets a fire disaster movie. The film is directed by Kim Ji-hoon and stars Sol Kyung-gu, Kim Sang-kyung, and Son Ye-jin. The film is spine-tingling after an hour of buildup (that instead of boring you gets you to fall in love with the characters after a brief glimpse into their lives). What follows this romantic build up is what feels like four hours of soul crushing heartbreak, darkness, fire sweats, and a rollercoaster gone wild kind of ride.
The cinematography and computer-generated images are jaw-dropping to say the least about a movie that leaves you speechless. The Tower won’t just leave you speechless, you will almost inevitable find yourself in a heap of tears, sweat, and throbbing fear. One interesting side note was that the movie almost inevitable followed by a debate on the physics of collapsing architecture. But that is intentional on the part of the director. He didn’t just make a disaster film (that was one hell of a ride) but it goes deeper to comment on corruption in the world of construction and the lip service paid to health and safety standards. Which if we think about it, is the scariest thing about this movie. Well, maybe the people melting is the scariest but the disregard for building codes is the second scariest part of the movie.