A dramedy about two Korean-American brothers who have to defend their family’s women’s shoes store while contemplating the future of their own personal dreams and the meaning of family during the first day of the 1992 Los Angeles Riots.
This film is not currently playing on MUBI but 30 other great films are. See what’s now showing
It's a good story, but the amateurish acting and some bad editing/directing choices end up undermining its emotional poignancy. It is great to see different points of views from different ethnicities and I'm a believer in microbudget films, but Gook came attached with a hype I'm not entirely sure it deserves.
Milla's explanation re why she wears a flower in her hair might as well be a recitation of 2pac's "The Rose That Grew From Concrete." She's too often a thematic cipher &/or plot engine. Final moments are bafflingly spent replaying stuff from earlier, because, now, u know, we know what it MEANS. Big issues but the performances are great and I truly feel this movie has a lot to say about love and that's a rare thing.
Bold and aggressive, Justin Chon's Gook is not quite the visceral or immediate film I was hoping for. What we have here is a patient, assured film that loves it's period, characters and setting. On paper, the film sounds like Do the Right Thing told from an Asian perspective, but it lacks Lee's bold vision and nuance. In time, Chon may deliver great work, but for now, we have strong but not amazing directorial debut.