Space Sweepers, the eagerly-awaited Korea blockbuster, has a release date at last on Netflix. South Korea's first space opera will premiere on the streaming service worldwide on February 5th.
We'd been tracking this movie since the summer. Space Sweepers was originally slated for a theatrical release in Korea in Summer, then postponed to September because of the coronavirus pandemic. Werewolf Boy director, Jo Sung-Hee's movie had been ready for ages. Then Netflix announced it had acquired the movie as a worldwide streaming exclusive. This week, they released a new poster and an official Netflix trailer.
The movie carries a pleasing Firefly, "Han Solo" vibe. K-drama favourite Song Joong-Ki plays a down-on-his-luck hotshot pilot leading a rag-tag crew of weirdos and screwups, including an ex-pirate (Kim Tae-Ri like a snarky Gamora), a foul-mouthed, endlessly pissed off engineer (Jin Sun-Kyu) and a snarky former military robot (Yoo Hai-jin) that still has its combat skills. They're space sweepers! Accident-prone, which is the lot of being in space, they're perpetually in debt and in need of a big scavenging score. The space scavenging business is cutthroat, and the crew of the Victory thinks they lucked out when they snatch the cargo from a crashed space shuttle – a 7-year-old girl that's actually a robot and weapon of mass destruction. They decide to get a big payday only to have the galactic army come after them. Cue epic chases and battles. In space. A little girl that's really a bomb is probably a metaphor for the perils of parenthood or something. This is a Korean movie, after all. Expect lots of shouting, kicking, punching, and explosions as a movie like this should have.
Space Sweepers was mainly produced by South Korean film company Merry Christmas, with additional financing from China's Huayi Tencent Entertainment and visual effects from Seoul-based Dexter Studios. This means it'll probably get a theatrical release in China, one of the few places on the planet with a still-booming movie box office. We can always use more Asian Science Fiction blockbusters. Apart from this, The Wandering Earth is the only other one that comes to mind.