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Bong Joon-ho's latest film, Mother, seems at first to be about unconditional love and redemption: accused of the murder of a teenage girl, a young man is taken away to prison, and his mother, who is convinced of his innocence, goes on a quest to clear her beloved son's name. Despite her petite stature, small voice, and unassuming presence, the mother displays a ruthless tenacity, as she digs deeper and deeper into the mystery surrounding the crime.

Black comedy pervades, and encounters with her son's best friend, his negligent lawyer, hapless police officers, the local junkman, and the grandmother and friends of the deceased girl, seem to embolden mother as she travels, rain-soaked on foot, in semi-clandestine investigation. At the film's end, Mother seems less about redemption and more about the desperate willingness to forget the failed trials of life. Suggests approved.