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Source .......... DVDR
Runtime ........ 1:33:38
Video Codec..... XviD MPEG-4 Codec
Video Bitrate .. .907 kb/s
Audio Codec .... MPEG-1 Layer 3,128 kb/s (64/ch, stereo) CBR
Frame Rate ..... 23.976
Resolution ..... 592x416 (1.42:1)
Language ....... English Dubbed (Hard-Cored)
The plot is far-fetched and seems intimidating at first, but really, the story is just the mise-en-scene, and what's really important are the cool characters and the mystical powers they wield. Volcano High is the name of a special Korean high school and in this school, some students possess telekinetic powers and other martial arts abilities. The plot is that they are all after the Secret Scroll, which would enable them to be even more powerful, but no-one knows where the scroll is hidden or what it really contains.
Kim Kyung-soo is transferred to Volcano High (after being expelled from eight other schools), and he tries hard to fit in. However, no one in the school knows that Kyung-soo has an innate power who could control water at will (similar to Aaron Kwok's Cloud Palm in Stormriders). But he does not wish to fight and backs into a corner whenever he is picked upon by the school bullies.
The internal struggle between rival gangs in the school is stopped only when a new group of teachers arrive to quell discontent. No one could beat the teachers, and it is only Kyung-soo, with his immense power, the only one left to face the awesome powers of the teachers.
Volcano High is a very cool film. It uses every camera trick in the book to emphasise its fight scenes, including some Matrix-style camera work. The special effects aren't groundbreaking, yet is used to great effect in the film, creating some truly mesmerising fight sequences. Still pictures doesn't do the film justice, you just have to watch it to marvel at its kinetic energy.
The whole premise is very tongue-in-cheek, with quite a comedy slant, meaning that this is for fun, not to be taken seriously. The plot is simple, but this is not a film to bang on about it's dramatic virtues; it is very much like watching a live-action Japanese manga. Probably the film was based on a manga series, and in which case, I hope there is a sequel in the works.
Volcano High is highly enjoyable, far better than some of the recent Hong Kong film product. If this is what Korea could come up with, then I am looking forward to some more. In the meantime, sit back, turn up the volume, and enjoy one of the greatest action films to come out of Korea. Spellbinding.