Veteran actress Kim Hye Soo recently gave an interview on her new film “A Special Lady,” where she plays the second-in-command of a crime syndicate.
Although the film was marketed as a “female noir movie,” it was not able to escape the criticisms affecting other noir films, including its portrayal of women. When asked whether her movie was a “female noir” or a “noir,” however, Kim Hye Soo said:
“Choose [between those]? I’ll just say ‘no comment.’ Is it possible to remove the word ‘mother’ from a female character who shows maternal affection? That’s what I had in mind [when I made the movie]. I wasn’t playing a mother at all. The things I did to protect Joo Hwan were eventually just a result of protecting the vague ambitions for a normal life and happened to include a son. Rather than maternal affection, my character is trying to protect her ambition. The moment you think of someone as a mother, you start thinking of them differently. I intentionally tried to exclude this, but it seems the audience still thought of me as ‘maternal.'”
She added, “To be honest, Na Hyun Jung [her character name], Kim Yeo Sa, Wei, all the female characters have their own kind of solidarity. That that didn’t show much on the surface is regretful. Wei’s character was much more important in the original script and it would have been nice if it had been the same in the movie. They had their own love, loyalty, and depth that didn’t lose out to Sang Hoon [a male character in the film]. If those parts had been shown in the movie, the actors would have had more to do and the movie would have been better as a result. It’s not like female characters in noir movies have to [just like the men] bust through everything using only action.”
“A Special Lady” premiered on November 9 in theaters in South Korea.