Netflix is coming up with another delicious action-thriller concoction with a Korean marination and zombie garnishing. The film will be released in January 2024.
A still from Badland Hunters
Badland Hunters is the brainchild of martial art director cum filmmaker Heo Hyyeong Haeng. The high-stakes thriller, produced by Climax Studios, Nova Films, and Big Punch Entertainment, will drop on Netflix on January 26, 2024. Starring Train to Busan and Eternals fame Don Lee as the protagonist Nam San, the film also dropped a teaser and a trailer. Here are five reasons to not miss out on the Korean adrenaline-hiking film.
Badland Hunters has a strange zombie premise, in which a majority of the city’s residents have turned into the walking dead, but no reason has been given yet. Simply, a massive earthquake decimated most of Seoul, with survivors huddling in random groups and staying together to survive the disaster as well as stay safe from zombies. Since the likes of Sweet Home and All Of Us Are Dead, Netflix has begun successfully running formulaic zombie films . This film, though promising, might just take a different approach to the genre.
Badland Hunters has a triple crisis, instead of one. Seoul and normal, modern life on earth as people knew it has ended and a zombie apocalypse has spread in the disaster-stricken capital of South Korea. Since the city had initially been handicapped by the decimating earthquake that hit it, only a handful of survivors struggled to make it each day. The third plot crises is case of the kidnapped young girl with mythical doctor Yang Gi Su, for his crazy experiments, who must be rescued for her safety.
The film has some realistic, several hyper realistic, but prominently made and gory scenes. And that is where the fun lies. Being a one-man tank, Don Lee’s Nam San takes on anyone and everyone, from a crocodile to mad doctors to militant zombies. It also features him fighting hand to hand with anyone who messes with his team or him in anyway, be it an ambitious, hungry reptile or boisterous and troubling hooligans.
The film uses wry humor and touches of dark comedy, that Don Lee employs perfectly, delivering the lines with a poker straight face. By inserting these comical moments in action scenes, the consistent violent spell is effectively broken to provide some comic relief. From making his own set of choices despite being offered only two options by the villain to chopping off the tail of a crocodile and internally salivating over its food value in a starving hellhole, Badland Hunters assures a promising and subtly humorous watch.
This reason does not really need an explanation. Actor Don Lee, also known as Ma Dong Seok is a visual treat to behold, especially in films and shows that require a thorough knowledge or at least understanding of martial arts, in order to be cast as a character. The Train to Busan actor, who later gained international acclaim with MCU’s Eternals, is memorable for his exceptional performance, expressions and dialogue delivery, not to forget flawless action sequences.