Fantasia Film Festival: Special Delivery (특송) Review

Special Delivery

Park Dae-min’s Special Delivery isn’t the kind of car chase, action-packed thriller you think it is. Yes, the film borrows heavily from action greats like The TransporterBaby Driver, and Drive. However, the familiar story of a driving specialist who emotionally entangles themselves with their cargo leans more on the dramatic side than on the action, which is okay. Instead of being a straightforward action film, Special Delivery features a deep emotional storyline—something you’d typically find in a modern-day South Korean genre flick.

Special Delivery follows Jung Eun-ha (Park So-dam), a driving ace specializing in unusual driving requests. When a disgraced baseball player is on the outs with a crew of vicious gangsters, he procures the services of Eun-ha to get him and his son (Jung Hun-jun) out of harm’s way. Unfortunately, things go haywire, and Eun-ha and Seo-won must escape from those out to get them.

While the drama is an integral part of the movie, the action is still the film’s selling point, and it certainly delivers on that end. These aren’t the hyper, over-the-top, physics-defying car sequences from the Fast & Furious movies. Instead, it’s a more grounded style of high-speed pursuit reminiscent of the previously mentioned movies it borrows from. Right from the get-go, the opening chase manages to thrill you and makes you laugh. 

Special Delivery is a fine mix of action and drama—featuring some well-developed characters and excellent performances.

Unfortunately, for a film about a driving ace, there aren’t a lot of car sequences. However, the little we get is well-choreographed and shot well too. Not to mention, Special Delivery features plenty of gunfights and fistfights. It may not be as flashy as The Roundup, but that doesn’t mean it’s not brutal or hard-hitting either.

With Park So-dam (Parasite) and Jung Hun-jun sharing the screen for most of Special Delivery‘s run time, their relationship is vital for the film’s success. Thankfully, both deliver fantastic performances. Park So-dam was one of many highlights of Parasite a few years back, and this film proves that she is no fluke. She plays Jang with a distinct fearlessness and calmness while also providing hints to her character’s emotions and backstory through her facial expressions and body language. Jung’s Seo-won also performs wonderfully during his many dramatic scenes. Hun-jun may be young, but he holds his own in this film.

Overall, Special Delivery is a fine mix of action and drama—featuring some well-developed characters and excellent performances. While the film doesn’t provide anything new or fresh, that doesn’t mean that Special Delivery can’t be incredibly entertaining and its own thing.

Rating: 3.5/5 atoms

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