South Korean helmer K.T. Kwak, whose career has run the full gamut from triumph (“Friend”) to disaster (“Typhoon”), clocks in with a very solid, at times moreso, crimer in “Eye for an Eye.” Gritty widescreen showcase for stars Han Seok-gyu (“Shiri”) and Cha Seung-weon (“Blood Rain”) as a hard-assed cop and a cool mastermind, respectively, is trim entertainment, but beyond Asia reps more film-week or buff ancillary fare. Locally, actors’ names propelled it to a tasty 2 million admissions in August.
About to retire to run a grocery store, maverick Capt. Baek Seong-chan (Han) is lured back by a daring holdup in which his own identity is used in the getaway. Robbery is just the start of an elaborate revenge plan by Ahn Hyeon-min (Cha) against mobster businessman Kim (Song Yeong-chang, aces), who drove Ahn’s father to suicide, and Ahn has deliberately involved Baek as the latter never succeeded in nailing Kim. Gum-chewing and silver-haired, Han tries too hard to convey Baek’s manic side, though his chemistry with the much more natural Cha is fine. Use of split-screen at major moments is effective in ramping up the tension.