A Realistic Korean Film With Martial Arts Performances
“Choo Ho Cho” or The Nude Girl is a 2020 Korean-American fantasy comedy film starring Audrey tagging along as the title character. Directed by Park Chan-Kyoung, the film depicts the actress’ performance as the nymph-like character known as Choo Ho. After her mother is killed in a car crash, Choo flees to Hong Kong with a man she met in an arranged marriage. Though they are happily married, Choo becomes a nanny for the elder Kim (Chee-ho Park), who takes care of Choo’s younger sister Yee (Anzie Doo) and works as a live in nanny. One day, Choo accidentally strangles her baby brother Joo (Lee Teng-hui) after forgetting to give him his sleeping bag on their wedding anniversary. Although Choo is sentenced to a reformatory, she is still determined to follow the rules of the society, even if it means hurting her family.
The film is based on the true story of Choo-na’s struggle to overcome social norms and maintain her dignity. She tries to hide her nudity behind a scarf when not in public, but each time she is spotted, she is forced to confront her predicament. The majority of the film is spent in Choo-na’s home, where she displays her most erotic body movements, such as when she strips naked on the bathroom floor (although this is only in the movie’s most explicit scenes). In one scene, Choo-na participates in a sex act with a samurai, who manages to take advantage of her modesty by ripping off her clothes and leaving her completely exposed. This act is only a minute long, yet the graphic display is enough to shock and embarrass the viewer. When Choo returns home, she is confronted by the police, who believe she is involved in the murder of a member of the royal family.
The plot of the film consists of four interlacing short scenes, which are interspersed with music, martial arts, and Choo-na’s narration. After the arrest is made, Choo-na is brought before the public, where she is humiliated by the stares of her audience. In the ensuing embarrassment, she vows to leave Korea for good, but fate has other plans. Her aunt passes away, and Choo-na must attend a martial arts school led by her Uncle. Although she initially wants to ignore her new instructor, she ends up learning a powerful self-defense technique that helps her learn not only how to protect herself from the outside world, but also how to protect those she cares about from the dangers within.
While some of the nudity in this film is quite graphic, especially the nudity in the bathroom scene, it is not considered offensive by Korean standards. Some of the more graphic scenes occur when Choo-na is strangling the samurai, and some of the fighting is done with a sword, rather than a gun. The most shocking scene happens towards the end of the film, where Choo-na slits the samurai’s throat with her teeth. Although one can argue that the point of the scene was to show the disgust that people felt over Choo-na’s actions, it is important to note that she actually did slit the Samurai’s throat. Even if one agrees with the methods performed by Choo-na and the fact that she was defending herself against a dangerous individual, one must still ask if it was justified.
Regardless of what your views are on the issue, this film is a highly entertaining and thrilling movie that offers a unique view into the lives of Koreans. Although it is not a documentary or a real life story of Choo-na’s life, it does offer a different view into the martial arts culture of Korea. It would be hard to find a choreographed karate scene in this film without seeing some form of nudity (usually from an extra or a background effect), which makes the film even more fun to watch. There are many different martial arts scenes involving Choo-na, and the ones I care about the most are when she slits the samurai’s throat and when she chops down the enemy samurai in a battle field. The nudity is only occasionally shown (most of the time it is shown in the DVD release) but that is the only part that takes away from the enjoyment of watching this film.
While I have always been a big fan of martial arts movies, this one is one of the better ones out there. The movie is not for the person who wants to see the fancy moves and unrealistic bodies, but rather for the person who likes to see real people doing martial arts. This film will appeal to both audiences. Due to the realistic situation and the engaging plot, this film gets an average rating of 90 minutes. That is plenty of time for anyone to enjoy watching this film.