‘12.12: The Day’ a gripping tale of power, loyalty and betrayal

March 2, 2024 Ian F. Fariñas 302 views

The revolution is here. Korea’s highest-grossing film of 2023, 12.12: The Day, is in Philippine cinemas.

Based on true events, acclaimed director Kim Sung-soo brings a gripping tale of power, loyalty and betrayal set against the backdrop of a nation in crisis.

The movie begins on October 26, 1979 when President Park is assassinated. Chaos descends upon South Korea as martial law is declared. But what follows is far more than just political turmoil – it’s a battle for the soul of a nation.

The aftermath of President Park’s assassination heralds the rise of Defense Security Commander Chun Doo-gwang (Hwang Jung-min). He assumes the role of Joint Investigation Commander under martial law. With a private band of officers, he stages a coup d’état to exercise power.

Opposing him is Capital Defense Commander Lee Tae-shin (Jung Woo-sung). A staunch believer in the military’s duty to protect rather than govern, Commander Lee stands as a barricade against the encroaching tide of Chun’s tyranny.

The tension between the two intensifies as military leaders continue to deliberate and with the Defense Minister gone. The fate of Seoul hangs in the balance, and the city’s longing for spring takes a perilous turn. It all leads to December 12th when an intense nine-hour battle ensues, an event that changed the contemporary history of Korea forever.

Various television series have attempted to explore pivotal moments of that fateful day, but 12.12: The Day is the first feature film to offer a previously untold narrative: Director Kim’s recreation of what happened with the rebel forces in those nine hours of combat.

Joining lead stars Hwang Jung-min and Jung Woo-sung are several fellow renowned actors.

Catch 12.12: The Day in cinemas nationwide.