(originally posted on In Place of Real Insight)
A failed suicide attempt leads to a discovery of a new life and a new beginning in this Korean film.
The film opens with a middle age man who is massively down on his luck and in a state of distress. This leads him to attempt suicide by jumping off a bridge into the Han river. Much to his dismay he washes ashore on a small island located under an overpass, in the middle of the river. His frustration with his failed attempt lead him to a frantic scramble to try to get off the island so that he can head to the tallest building and leap off of it. After a day or so of failed attempts his view of his new situation changes and he starts viewing it as a new lease on life where he can be anything and do anything that he wants. He begins to make useful things of the assorted trash that he finds and even plants himself a garden so he can eat something other than fish. Perfectly content with his new life, it suddenly gets interrupted by a shut-in girl who has been viewing him through the long zoom lens of her camera. She eventually reaches out to him via a message in a bottle and the movie shifts from there.
The movie had a distinct Michel Gondry feel to it with some surreal scenes and bright imagination. You could overlook the flimsy premise because of the big “dream like” scope to it. You forget how close the man is to society and start imagining what you would do in his situation. The part that I was a little let down by was the ending which was all too predictable and not that well executed. But I didn’t let that distract me from what was a very fun film.
Castaway on The Moon is a film with a big heart and big imagination and while the ending was a bit of a let down the journey was still a fun one.