[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/sfmv_4545.jpg]]

-->''I know you're a good guy... but you know why I have to kill you...''

''Sympathy For Mr. Vengeance'' (2002, Korean: 복수는 나의 것; ''Vengeance Is Mine'') is the first installment of Creator/ParkChanWook's ''[[Film/{{Oldboy}} Vengeance]] [[Film/SympathyForLadyVengeance Trilogy]]'' and easily the most depressing and most violent of the three films. The plot is a standard {{tragedy}} that makes good use of {{irony}} as the film follows the [[TwoLinesNoWaiting two protagonists]], Ryu and Park Dong-jin.

Ryu, a deaf-mute aspiring artist, has to leave art school to take care of his ill sister, who badly needs a kidney transplant. Unfortunately he is laid off from his factory job, but he refuses to tell his sister. Out of desperation, he makes a deal with black market organ traffickers to find a kidney for his sister in exchange for one of his own kidneys and 10,000,000 Korean won. The organ dealers swindle him out of his money, leaving him unable to pay for his sister's operation ([[{{Irony}} which cost exactly 10,000,000 Korean won]]) once her surgeon finally gets a kidney. Ryu and his girlfriend Cha Yeong-mi resort to a kidnapping scheme in order to get the money to save his sister. This benevolent crime begins a cycle of disaster and revenge that threatens to destroy everyone involved.
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!! This film provides examples of:

* AlasPoorVillain: Even though the main characters themselves have done quite a number of bad deeds, the tragedy of the ensuing CycleOfRevenge, due to RousseauWasRight, make them feel like this in spite of it.
** [[spoiler:Yeong-mi only wanted to help her boyfriend save his sister. She suffers a particularly gruesome death for her involvement]].
** [[spoiler:Ryu. Dong-jin even admits that Ryu is probably a decent guy, but he still must die]].
** [[spoiler:Ryu kills all of the sons of the chief black market swindler right in front of her, causing her not unsympathetic anguish in spite of her crimes]].
* AnOfferYouCantRefuse: Ryu's kidnapping scheme.
* AssholeVictim:
** The organ dealers themselves were the only ones who didn't have any motivation behind their actions. Needless to say, their deaths by Ryu, which came off as LaserGuidedKarma, came off as satisfying.
** At the end, [[spoiler:Dong-jin himself is more together. He was killed by Yeong-mi's terrorist group, just as she warned him earlier.]]
* BathSuicide: See GoodbyeCruelWorld.
* BatterUp: Ryu vs. organ dealers.
* BlackMarket: The organ dealers whom Ryu contacts.
* BloodIsSquickerInWater: [[spoiler:Ryu's death at the end.]]
* BombThrowingAnarchist: Yeong-mi's leftist group is implied to be made up of these.
* BrickJoke: Yeong-mi's terrorist organization is talked about at certain points of the movie. [[spoiler: As it turns out, they actually do exists.]]
* BuryMeNotOnTheLonePrairie: Ryu's sister requests that if she were to die, she wants to be buried at the suburban riverbed that the both of them used to frequent as children. [[spoiler:When Ryu finds his sister dead in the bathtub, he bought her dead body to said location, but he also had to bring Yu-sun along with him to ensure that the child wouldn't be lost. All does not end well when Yu-sun drowns in the river with Ryu unable to hear her cries for help.]]
* ChekhovsHobby: [[spoiler:Yeong-mi is shown printing off a death threats for an anarchy group. This later turns out to be a calling card the (very real) group pins on victims, and one is held on Mr. Park's torso with a knife.]]
* ChekhovsSkill: [[spoiler:Ryu's batting practice later helps him knock a dealer unconscious, and then again to stave in his skull.]]
* ColdBloodedTorture: [[spoiler:Dong-jin to Yeong-mi.]]
* CruelAndUnusualDeath: The torture of [[spoiler:Yeong-mi.]]
* CycleOfRevenge: The central theme of the film.
* ADateWithRosiePalms: Ryu's neightbors masturbate to his sister's moans through the walls. It turns out that [[spoiler:they're moans of pain from her illness]].
* DeathByIrony: [[spoiler:Ryu was responsible for Yu-sun's drowning, so Dong-jin drowns him. Earlier in the film, Ryu recalls that the water was only deep enough to come up to his waist]].
* DiesWideOpen: [[spoiler:The police found Yeong-mi dead with her eyes wide open, after she was tortured to death by Dong-jin.]]
* TheDogBitesBack: When Ryu get back at the organ dealers.
* DownerEnding: Heck, ''downer'' movie.
* DrivenToSuicide: See GoodbyeCruelWorld.
* ElectricTorture: [[spoiler:Yeong-mi dies this way.]]
* EveryoneCallsHimBarkeep: Ryu's sister's name is never mentioned.
* FallenHero: Both protagonists end up broken by loss, and then resort to awful things to get revenge.
* FatalFlaw: Ryu's deafness. He didn't hear [[spoiler:Yu-sun calling for help as she drowned; if she had lived, 4/5 of the main characters would have survived the film, making it less of a DownerEnding.]]
* ForWantOfANail: As explained by Yeong-mi, everything is the fault of Ryu's bosses: since they fired Ryu, he went to the mob to get an organ match for his sister without the waiting list; since they rob Ryu, this leads to the kidnapping plot and everything that goes wrong from then on. In other words, ''it could have all been avoided if Ryu wasn't laid off.''
* FromBadToWorse
* FromNobodyToNightmare: Dong-jin and Ryu.
* GoryDiscretionShot: The autopsy.
* GoodbyeCruelWorld: [[spoiler:The suicide note is written by Ryu's sister, hours before her brother [[BathSuicide finds her dead in a bathtub]].]]
* GraveRobbing: Dong-jin accidentally uncovers [[spoiler: Ryu's sister's body.]]
* GutPunch: [[spoiler: The death of Yu-sun is what set off the events of the movie.]]
* HandSignals: Yeong-mi uses this sign language whenever she is speaking with Ryu.
* TheHeroDies: [[spoiler:By the end of the film, all three of the protagonists were dead.]]
* HeWhoFightsMonsters: Both Dong-jin and Ryu became as worse as their respective enemies in the second half of the film.
* HealthcareMotivation: The reason why Yu-sun is kidnapped by Ryu.
* HighPressureBlood: Justified, Ryu stabs a man in the carotid artery.
* HopeSpot: Subverted. While being tortured, Yeong-mi says that her terrorist group, Revolutionary Anarchists Association, will come after her killers if she indeed dies. [[spoiler:Not only is she electrocuted to death, but she was the only member in the group. The terrorist group finally show up at the end of the movie to avenge her.]]
* IneffectualSympatheticVillain: Ryu's wrongdoings are more often the result of mistakes and bad luck than bad intentions.
* InfantImmortality: Averted. [[spoiler:Yu-sun didn't survive her drowning.]]
* {{Irony}}
* KafkaComedy: '''Nothing''' goes right [[CrapsackWorld for anyone.]] For example, Ryu is laid off and has to resort to trading with criminals to buy a matching kidney, as he won't be able to pay his sister's medical bills much longer. [[spoiler:After the criminals they remove his kidney and flee along with his savings, ''Ryu's doctor then informs him they have miraculously found a matching donor for his sister, and his savings will cover the operation.'']]
* KarmicDeath:
** [[spoiler:Ryu]] gets a DeathByIrony.
** Before [[spoiler:Yeong-mi dies, she warns Dong-jin that her anarcho-terrorist cabal will hunt him down if she's murdered. Nothing we've seen suggests that her group has this kind of power and he kills her anyway. In the end, her anarchist buddies show up and kill him, just as she'd warned]].
* KickTheSonOfABitch: Ryu begins his descent to HeWhoFightsMonsters by killing the organ dealers.
* KillEmAll: [[spoiler:By the end of the film, every major character is dead.]]
* TheKillerBecomesTheKilled: See DeathByIrony.
* TheKindnapper: Ryu and Yeong-mi to Yu-sun.
* KnightTemplar: Dong-jin thinks that hunting down the kidnappers of his daughter is considered justice.
* LadyMacbeth: Yeong-mi is the one to come up with the kidnapping plan, and pressures Ryu into carrying it out.
* LooksLikeSheIsEnjoyingIt: Ryu's neighbours masturbating to what they assume to be sex but is in fact his sister suffering from her failing kidneys.
* AMatchMadeInStockholm: Non-romantic example. The daughter was kidnapped, and everything seems fine until [[spoiler: she accidentally drowns while Ryu was burying his sister, unable to hear the girl's cries for help. This results in the CycleOfRevenge being set in motion.]]
* NotSoDifferent
* OnTheMoney: {{Inverted|Trope}} in that Ryu was swindled out of his money from the organ dealers. The cost happens to be 10,000,000 Korean won, which is exactly the same cost should an organ be available legally.
* PayEvilUntoEvil: Dong-jin's entire M.O. to the kidnappers of his daughter.
* POVCam: Several establishing early on shots remind the audience that Ryu is deaf.
* AProtagonistIsRyu: Ryu himself is one of the main characters.
* RevengeBeforeReason: This happens twice in the movie.
** After Ryu was finished with his vengeance on the organ dealers. He went back to Yeong-mi's apartment, only to [[spoiler:find his girlfriend's dead body in the stretcher while in a lift. Instead of getting over it, he was consumed with grief, swearing vengeance on his girlfriend's killer.]]
** Dong-jin wishes to fulfill his desire for justice on the kidnappers of his daughter. He starts out by [[spoiler: going to Yeong-mi's apartment and giving her an ElectricTorture. However, the girl warns him that if she dies, the terrorist group she's part of, knowing of his identity, will kill him. Dong-jin didn't listen, so he kills her anyway.]]
* RoaringRampageOfRevenge: Ryu vs. organ dealers. Dong-jin versus the kidnappers. Ryu versus Dong-jin.
* RousseauWasRight
* ShootTheShaggyDog: [[spoiler:None of the main characters get to see the end of the film. Specifically: Ryu's sister commits suicide, Yu-sun accidentally drowns, Mr. Park murders Yeong-mi and Ryu, and Yeong-mi's anarchy group kills Mr. Park.]]
* ShowWithinAShow: The cartoon that Yu-sun was watching in Ryu's apartment.
* SlashedThroat: Ryu's stabbing of one of the organ dealers.
* SlidingScaleOfUnavoidableVersusUnforgivable
* TheSpeechless: Ryu. Although he only makes sniffs of sadness when [[spoiler:he buries his dead sister]], grunting noises during his fight with the organ dealers and [[spoiler:a scream of pain when he gets his Achilles tendons slashed by Dong-jin.]]
* ThanatosGambit: [[spoiler:Yeong-mi's death ensures Dong-jin's, thanks to her anarchist gang.]]
* TooDumbToLive: Ryu stabs a man [[SlashedThroat in the carotid artery]]. His mother tells him not to pull out the screwdriver because he'll die nearly instantly from blood loss. Guess what he does.
* {{Tragedy}}
* TrailersAlwaysSpoil: The movie poster is a shot of the second-to-last scene.
* TwoLinesNoWaiting
* TwoScenesOneDialogue: Dong-jin and Ryu were asked about what they'll do to the people they are looking for. Their response: "Kill them".
* UsedToBeASweetKid: Ryu was a caring brother to his dying sister since young. But his desperation to save her turns him from a nice boy to a kidnapper and eventually, a murderer.
* ViewersAreMorons: The end, when [[spoiler:Dong-jin is killed by Yeong-mi's anarchist friends, and the film repeats her earlier threats in voice-over to explain to brain-dead viewers what just happened.]]
* WhiteShirtOfDeath: The two of the three organ dealers who were killed by Ryu. Also, [[spoiler:Dong-jin himself at the end.]]
* YankTheDogsChain: So many instances.
* YouGottaHaveBlueHair: Ryu's hair is dyed green.
* YourPrincessIsInAnotherCastle: [[spoiler:Dong-jin's death at the hands of Yeong-mi's anarchist gang at the end.]]
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