Film Review: 'The Guard Post'

Bottom line: Thriller set at a Korean border guard post pours bucketfuls of blood but throws scant light on psyche of North-South divide.

CANNES -- A horror-thriller that takes place entirely in the confines of one of many guard posts dotted along the North-South Korean border's DMZ, "The Guard Post" effectively conveys a murderously claustrophobic atmosphere surrounding an investigation of the bizarre deaths of an entire platoon.

It can stir up expectations among European buyers for DVD release through its superficial resemblance to "JSA." However, it has but a fraction of the latter's piercing political insight and powerful characterization. Instead, it goes in for the easy thrill of mind-numbing bloodshed and violence.

The tension starts to falter after the initial enigma of the deaths gives way to a viral infection plot that steals from the formula of the zombie film, literally going out with a blast that wipes out any logical explanation. This is exacerbated by the confusing structure of cutting back and forth in time, when the cast is made indistinguishable by the same uniform, haircuts and even the same facial outbreaks.