Broker – REVIEW

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The adoption process has always seemed pretty arduous and unfair and our own Editor has bitter experience of it when his parents offered him up for adoption. Admittedly the agency were a little taken aback as he was 22 at the time (‘You’re fired!’ – Ed). Broker also features a kind of adoption agency where ‘baby boxes’ are put out for unwanted newborn babies like some sort of warped recycling depot.

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Working there as a volunteer is Ha Sang-hyun (Song Hang-Ho) involved in a scam where the new born is ‘stolen’, CCTV is erased and instead the baby is offered up on the black marker for adoption to couples wanting a newborn rather than a child[perhaps tainted by the adoption system. His partner in trafficking is Dong-Soo (Gang Dong-won) himself raised as an orphan and their money making operation trundles along earning them money and all is fine until the mother, So-Young (Lee Ji-eun) of a recent ‘donation’ returns for the baby only to find what they’re up to and threatens to inform the police unless they allow her to come along with them as the pair interview potential parents like the worst reality show to ever be commissioned. What follows, as well as the couple of cops covertly tracking them, is a road movie that varies far from the norm.

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Directed by Hirokazu Koreeda best known for his warm dramas about family and is widely praised for his work but Broker right from the start has a queasy set up as it tries to make the baby bartering duo a kind of likeable comic duo whereas the reality is that the premise at best is unsavoury and stretches credulity. That the pairs claim that they’re making couples happy by swerving the paperwork and suitability checks of potential parents is equally suspect.

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Broker is not without its occasional charming  moments despite its concept and So-Young eventually is revealed as having an even shadier past than the ones the duo are engaged in. But Broker is a little overlong and overly sentimental at times not to mention highly implausible

Here’s the Broker trailer……

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