The Roundup Blu-ray Review


  • Director ‏ : ‎ Sang-yong Lee
  • Actors ‏ : ‎ Don Lee, Sukku Son, Gwi-hwa Choi
  • Dubbed: ‏ : ‎ English
  • Studio ‏ : ‎ Mpi Home Video
  • MPAA rating ‏ : ‎ NR (Not Rated)
  • Country of Origin ‏ : ‎ USA
  • Number of discs ‏ : ‎ 1
  • Media Format ‏ : ‎ NTSC, Subtitled
  • Run time ‏ : ‎ 1 hour and 46 minutes
  • Release date ‏ : ‎ December 13, 2022


         While Hollywood has been preoccupied with an endless stream of superhero films, South Korea has found its most successful blockbuster since the beginning of the Covid pandemic in a franchise-making sequel to The Outlaws. The Roundup, like the film before it, is a crime action-comedy that feels like something Hollywood would have made in the 1980s or ‘90s. And I mean that as the highest compliment. The emphasis is on a solid story bolstered by engaging characters and grounded (for the most part) action. There is no need for heavy CGI or a world-ending final battle. It is enough to let South Korean movie star Ma Dong-seok (or Don Lee, as he’s billed in the US) swing his mighty fists at a ruthlessly vicious villain.


        Detective Ma Seok-do (Ma Dong-seok) proved he was willing to bend the rules to take down criminal gangs in South Korea’s Chinatown in The Outlaws, but this time he travels abroad to take down a bad guy. At first he is just going to Vietnam to extradite a fugitive, but soon finds a more dangerous criminal named Kang Hae-sang (Son Suk-ku) who has eluded the local police while killing South Korean tourists in a kidnapping and ransom scheme. Detective Ma and Capt. Jeon Il-man (Choi Gwi-hwa) take it upon themselves to investigate and track Kang down.


        Even if the setting has changed, the formula in The Roundup is pretty much the same as The Outlaws. There is a lot of great humor to balance out the intense scenes of violence and action, most of which involves a memorably merciless bad guy. The cruel acts of the antagonist only encourages the audience to root for Detective Ma to get his hands on them, using his own tough methods to take them down. The Roundup may not change the formula, but it matches it in a way that’s effective enough to look forward to the next two planned installments in the franchise.


        The Blu-ray release for The Roundup doesn’t have much in terms of special features, beyond a few trailers and an optional English-language dubbed audio. What it does have is a high definition presentation of the film, including DTS HD Master audio that gives each punch impact. The sound design does as much heavy lifting in the action scenes as does Don Lee.


Entertainment Value: 9/10

Quality of Filmmaking: 7.5/10

Historical Significance:  7/10

Special Features: 1/10



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