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Night In Paradise is a South Korean crime drama that is written and directed by Park Hoon-jung; Hoon-jung directed the gangster epic New World (2013) that led him to commercial success. Screened at the 77th Venice International Festival on September 3, 2020, Night In Paradise had to be released on April 9, 2021, on Netflix due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The film stars Uhm Tae-goo, Cha Seung-won, and Jeon Yeo-been.

The story is about gangster Park Tae-goo (Uhm Tae-goo) after rejecting to switch sides to a rival gang with Chairman Doh as the head. As the consequence of his rejection, Park’s sister and niece are murdered. Blaming Chairman Doh, Park gets his brutal revenge and is forced to hide away in Jeju Island for a while before fleeing to Russia. At Jeju, he meets Jae-yeon (Jeon Yeo-been) who has a terminal illness. Before Park can relax for a bit, a major henchman (Cha Seung-won) wants brutal revenge on Park and hunts him down for Doh’s death.

This film shows off the dark reality of being involved with organized crime. Park gets his revenge but somewhat knows that his actions will have fatal consequences if he doesn’t stay quiet. His life is an utter mess because his family is murdered on his niece’s birthday. But his redemption comes from saving Jae-yeon from killing herself and protecting her from the invading gangsters. What surprised me was what really lead to the murder of Park’s family and the bloody battles afterward.

This is a good film to watch. It makes you think about the complexities of what constitutes loyalty, friendship, and professional obligation. There are no lines to be crossed because no one knows where they begin. All it takes is for someone to refuse something in order to set tragedies. Director Park Hoon-jung has done it again.