Project Wolf Hunting is a unique blend of action, thriller and horror from writer/director Kim Hong-sun. It follows an operation to transport a group of extremely violent criminals from the Philippines to South Korea. With prior attempts at transfers ending in catastrophe the decision is made to transport criminals in bulk via sea. Midway through it’s journey to Busan an escape attempt errupts on board this cargo ship. Escaped criminals armed to the teeth with guns and blades are in a full on bloody riot. This quickly becomes a nightmare which goes from bad to worse as everyone must fight to survive.

I was immediately interested in Project Wolf Hunting upon hearing of its premise. Something of a cross between Con-Air and Under Siege this action film was a must see for me. It’s not the type of entertainment Hollywood makes anymore despite the popularity of violent action films like The Raid or The Roundup. The lessons learned from their success seems to be to just remake them in English rather than attempt something comparable.

The gore hound in me was salivating hearing literally “tons on fake blood” was used while filming as well! Project Wolf Hunting’s R rating in Australia definitely gave credibility to that declaration.

Definitely not for the faint of heart this is a movie which pulls absolutely no punches. I can say without a doubt that this is one of the most violent films I have ever seen. This cargo ship could float on the blood which is spilled over these 2 hours. Why is the movie so violent? As Tarantino would say “Because it’s just so much fun”. Shootings, stabbings, torture and mayhem run rampant throughout and nobody is safe. It is incredibly nihilistic and not a single character has ‘plot armour’. 

This can be disappointing when a character you’re beginning to get invested in is killed abruptly. Interesting dynamics between factions and character sub-plots take a back seat to the eye-candy violent spectacle. Not that I had a huge problem with it as I’ve been well trained by slasher films in this regard. Only there characters who survive a gruelling fight to the death will die in a SEQUEL, not in the same film 5 minutes later! 

Credit where it is due Hong-sun does still make you care about these characters which would be impossible without the right cast. Project Wolf Hunting features a brilliant line-up of charismatic stars both young and old. Many of the players here are recognisable in their own right from successful K-dramas. Even if you don’t recognise the actors you can recognise their star power. This differentiates the movie from a standard western film where characters with minor screen time are often portrayed by little more than glorified extras.  

Full of twists and turns I was caught off guard more than once. The description of “Con-Air meets Under Siege” doesn’t actually do the film justice. What I find incredible is the story starts out over the top and actually gets MORE insane as it goes on. Although it does plateau around halfway and I would have liked seeing just how crazy things could’ve gotten.

There isn’t much of a deep story and what there is feels like something Hong-sun is saving for a follow up. That said the film is endlessly entertaining in its comical violence. It reminded me of some of Takeshi Miike’s wackier films and like them it’s best not to spoil too much. 

Project Wolf Hunting is a shamelessly violent and ridiculously fun movie. A wild ride start to finish I highly recommend it to anybody interested in unique action films made for adults.