Seen in Jeonju

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50th Daejong Movie Awards

3rd November 2013

daejong festivalThe 50th Daejong Movie Award ceremony was held on November 1st. Here are the results…

Best New Actor: Kim Soo-hyeon (Secretly, Greatly)

Best New Actress: Seo Eun-ah (Jit)

Best New Director: Jeong Byeong-gil (Confession of Murder)

Best Music: New World

Best Special Effects: Tower

Best Costumes: Face Reader

Best Art Direction: Snow Piercer

Most Popular Actor: Lee Jeong-jae (Face Reader)

Lifetime Achievement Awards: Hwang Jeong-soon (actress)/ Jeong Il-seong (director)

Best Supporting Actor: Jo Jeong-seok (Face Reader)

Best Supporting Actress: Jang Yeong-nam (Werewolf Boy)

Best Lighting: Berlin File

Best Editing: Snow Piercer

Best Cinematography: Berlin File

Best Planning: Miracle in Cell 7

Best Screenplay: Miracle in Cell 7

Judge’s Choice Special Award: Kal So-won (Miracle in Cell 7)

Best Director: Han Jae-rim (Face Reader)

Best Actor: Ryu Seung-ryong (Miracle in Cell 7)/ Song Gang-ho (Face Reader)

Best Actress: Uhm Jeong-hwa (Montage)

Best Film: Face Reader

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Imagination Series-Tribeca Film Festival

26th October 2013

I was recently contacted about whether I would like to share the following about the Imagination Series film competition.I thought it might be something that film lovers would be interested in and copied the email I received below. And you can vote by visiting their Facebook page:

• Four filmmakers have already won the chance to have their script made into a film • Now the public can vote for a fifth film by visiting
LONDON, October 24, 2013 – BOMBAY SAPPHIRE, in association with Tribeca Film Festival, have today announced four winners of the Imagination Series film competition.
But the voting isn’t over just yet: now they’re giving members of the general public the chance to vote for the fifth and final film treatment to be selected. Film lovers can have their say and cast their vote by visiting, with the winning film announced on 14 November 2013. By way of thanks, 1 entrant will be picked at random to win an all expenses paid, VIP trip to New York City during the Tribeca Film Festival.

The five shortlisted entries are:
• Karen Pessina, Italy – ‘Tea Time’ is a thriller involving two men who pull over with a flat tire. When they seek help at a nearby house, an old lady offers them tea and muffins. One suddenly drops dead after eating a poisoned muffin. His partner is reunited with the old lady.

• Allyson Morgan, USA – ‘Need for Speed (Dating)’ is a comedy about two friends that attend a speed dating event. They face a gaggle of unsavory guys one after the other and begin to think that all hope is gone. Fate intervenes and they each find a great match somewhat closer to home.

• Giles Borg, UK – ‘The Search’ is a drama about a man who fears he’s the last man left on earth. He employs an old computer terminal, BOB, to scan CCTV footage for other signs of life. BOB finds other humans but, being lonely himself, does not tell John, who leaves, hopeless.

• Effie Woods, UK – ‘Cutie Pie’ is a comedy about a man, Peter, who returns home to find he has been bought an adorable kitten by Maggie. Peter wants Maggie to return it when the kitten destroys the house. Despite their efforts to shake off the little monster, it continues to haunt them.

• Hiroshi Momose, Japan – ‘The Value of Freedom’ is an animation set in the zoo. Two birds look out through bars at the sky beyond. One bird enlists help to escape the confines of the cage. Choosing to fly off into the unknown, the other bird chooses to stay, reassured by what it knows.

Five of the most imaginative illustrators and design collectives have been selected to create bespoke movie posters for each of the shortlisted scripts. James White (Tea Time), Studio MUTI (The Value Of Freeodm), Joe Wilson (The Search), Andrew Archer (Cutie Pie) and ilovedust (Need For Speed (Dating) have all used their unique styles to bring the treatments to life.

Bombay Sapphire and Geoffrey Fletcher assembled a cross section of imaginative heavy weights from the world of film to judge the entries, which featured Academy Award winning actor, Adrien Brody; producer, Ross Katz; Naomi Foner; actor, Peter Facinelli; and senior curator at Vimeo, Sam Morrill, who between them selected nine films for their originality and imagination.
Academy Award winning screenwriter Geoffrey Fletcher commented on the competition: “At a time when it’s difficult for new voices and creative visions to find funding and broad exposure, Bombay Sapphire is providing a platform and launch pad for new stories to be told on screen. We hope the films we create inspire audiences and are as resonate as they are imaginative.”

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More than one Bunshinsaba?

27th June 2013

Bunshinsaba 2012 Bunshinsaba 2 Back in July 2012, I wrote a review of Ahn Byeog-ki’s 2004 film, Bunshinsaba. The very first sentence of the review, for those of you who do not wish to click the link, was “If… I could choose any recent movie I wished to remake, it would be Bunshinsaba.” Earlier today, I was looking at the selections for the Pucheon International Fantastic Film Festival and saw that there will be a movie screened, directed by Ahn Byeong-ki, called Bunshinsaba 2. The movie, however, is not listed as a Korean-made film. Instead it was produced in China. A quick check of Ahn filmography revealed that he had directed another film in China a year early, that one entitled Bunshinsaba. Was it a remake of the Korean film that Ahn had made nearly a decade earlier? It turns out that the answer is ‘No.’ I tracked down the 2012 Bunshinsaba and have watched about half of it before writing this post.. I will be going back to viewing it soon. The new Bunshinsaba is completely unrelated. Instead of the story taking place in a high school with a tortured ghost possessing young women and causing them to set themselves on fire, the new movies have an entirely different premise. It is about a mother running from what may seems like an abusive relationship.. although at this point in the film I am beginning to question just how much I can believe of the main character’s memories and stories. She takes her young son with her to get him away from his father and they move into an old colonial style house owned by a friend deep in a forest. However, strange things begin happening almost immediately upon their arrival and her son forms a bizarre attachment to an ugly, scowling doll he finds in the garden. It soon becomes apparent to the woman that her son is not himself and the doll keeps turning up in the strangest places. At the point I am at in the film now, the doll is actually quite threatening… Of course, the movie is entirely in Chinese.. and has Chinese subtitles.. so I will not be writing a detailed review of a film I can’t understand. It is not a bad movie, but as yet has not really tread any new ground.
Judging by the image on the poster of Bunshinsaba 2, it will be using the ghost that has been appearing in the 2012 story. Below are the trailers for Bunshinaba (2012) and Bunshinsaba 2 (2013) both by director Ahn Byeong-ki

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The 33rd Blue Dragon Awards

28th November 2012

The 2012 edition of the Blue Dragon Film Awards will take place on November 30th. I am listing all the candidates for the major awards in their categories ahead of the festival and will update this post when the results are announced. Care to choose your favorites?

Best Film

best film

Winner: __Pieta_____

Best Director

best director

Winner: ____Jeong Ji-yeong_________

Best Actor

best actor

Winner: _____Choi Min-shik________

Best Actress

best actress

Winner: ____Im Soo-jeong_______

Best Supporting Actor

best supporting actor

Winner: ___Ryu Seung-ryong___

Best Supporting Actress

best supporting actress

Winner: ___Moon Jeong-hee______

Best New Director

best new director

Winner: ____Kim Hong-seon__________

Best New Actress

best new actress

Winner: __Kim Ko-eun__

Best New Actor

best new actor

Winner: ___Jo Jeong-seok__

Other awards:  Best Screenplay: __Nameless Gangster <Yoon Jong-bin>__, Best Cinematography: __Eungyo <Kim Tae-kyeong___, Best Lighting: ____Eungyo <Hong Seung-cheol>_____  Best Music: __Nameless Gangster <Jo Yeong-wook>_ Best Art Direction: ___Masquerade <Oh Hong-seok>_____, Best Short Film: __Night___


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New Movies in Theaters August 2

31st July 2012

Normally on Tuesday, I post the trailers of new Korean movies being released in theaters. However, this week will be an extremely light post.  There are no new Korean movies opening. In fact, I don’t believe anything that is being released this week will be any threat to the top two films in the box office, Thieves and Batman Rises.

What we have coming are Pirahna 3DD (us), Magic Mike (us), Marley (us), Rock of Ages (us), Haunted Echos (us), Grave Encounter (ca), Sammy’s Adventure (be), Swan Lake (uk), Babycall (norway), AV Idol (jp) and Animal Kingdom (au).  If I had to pick one of these movies to see, I would probably go with Grave Encounter..I’m a sucker for ghosts in movies even though I am often disappointed by them.

Oh, speaking of light content.. I did not post about the new DVDs this week, not out of laziness, but because the only thing being released was a film I had already reported..Its released date had been delayed. So there was nothing new to add….

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New Movies opening June 28th

26th June 2012

With summer vacation for universities in full swing and the rainy season predicted to start this coming weekend, it seems like the perfect time to head for the theaters to see a film… and with 12 new movies opening, you will certainly find one that you like. Of the new films coming we have I Spit on Your Grave (us),Cabin In the Woods (us), The Big Bang (us), Amazing Spider-Man (us) No Do (es), Wuthering Heights (uk), Nine Miles Down (uk), Q (fr), Red Nights (hk), Choy Lee Fut (ch), King of Thorn (jp) and Happy, Happy Bread (jp)

Normally, Iwould be posting the trailers for the new Korean movies here.. but as you can see, there are none…   Next week though, look for Yeongashi, a film that looks very promising.

So instead of posting trailers, I have updated the page for movies filming and awaiting release, adding about 20 titles.

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The Independent, June 4th, 1896

2nd May 2012

Continuing the weekly project of retyping Korea’s first English-language newspaper, this week’s issue is Vol.1, No. 26 from Thursday, June 4, 1896. In this issue: The editor further explores the possible monetary benefits of growing Chinese Grass, the Minister of Education protests the westernization of  Korea and someone cheats a shoe store out of seven pairs of shoes!  <<Reminder:  All opinions expressed in the newspaper are the views of the editors of The Independent. They do not reflect the opinions of this website and are reproduced here for the sole purpose of providing historical context>> 



We mentioned in a late issue of this paper the advantages that would accrue from the cultivation in Korea of the fibre producing plant called by the Malays ramie but which is ordinarily known to the west as Chinese grass-cloth.  We must crave the pardon of our readers for the mistake we made in calling it the same as the Korean mo-si.  There are two kinds of cloth in Korea which resemble each other very much; one is mo-si and the other is pye.  The former is flax or hemp and the latter is the ramie or grass cloth. The former which is the same as our linen is higher in price than the latterbeing finer and whiter asmade up here. The pye is coarser and a darker color and is used exclusively in making mourners’ clothes.  It is evident thereforethat large quantities of it are grown in Korea now everyone wears mourning forthe Queen.  Al the light brown hats and coats we see are of this same grass cloth. It is obtained from the bark of a plant that grows luxuriantly in poor soil attaining a height of five or six feet and, the Koreans say, higher. It is stronger than the hemp and has a much finer luster but the Koreans cannot make it look as well as the hemp.  We learn now that a gentleman in Shanghai, Mr. Bennertz, has discovered a simple process for the separating of the fibre of this plant and we have seen written statements by expert weavers n England to whom samples of his product were submitted and they are unanimous in their praise of it, considering it better than cotton, having a luster which will render it very acceptable in conjunction with silk, and European manufacturers would be pleased to handle it if the raw material could be provided in large enough quantities.  But we hear that the inventor of the process is taking steps to establish a large manufactory in Shanghai where the raw material can be sent and be made up far cheaper than by sending it to distant England. Here is a splendid opportunity to make use of some of the uncultivated hillsides in Korea.  It does not require a rich soil.  It grows rapidly, two and somtimes three crops being gathered from one field the same year. If there were a few enterprising Korean who would go to work energetically getting farmers all about to grow this plant, guaranteeing them a certain fixed price for the product it would not be long before an impetus would be given to its culture which wuld speedily repay all the time and labor put on it and show a handsome profit for both the farmer and the middle-man.

The English manufactures think the fibre ought to brig easily from 35 to 45 pounds per ton. This means about $400 silver per ton. We believe it would be asimple matter for a farmer to raise a ton of it a year in addition to his regular crops. It requires little care or attention and can be raised on land that today lies fallow.

Brief Notice

After the abolishment of the old horse courier service in the country, the Department of Communications, with a view to establishing a postal system in its place, sent special officials to different districts to ascertain the amount of land belonging to the bureau of courier service. One of these men, Chang Che Yung, who was looking up districts near Seoul, received a bribe from farmers and let them retain land belonging to the Dep’t.  The Independent investigated the charge and found it confirmed.

At the time of a disturbance some months ago a policeman, Kim Eung Kiu, of Chun Chon district, seized an insurgent Kim Chi Yung and turned him over to the captain of the Seoul company who shot the man. The son of the executed man met the policeman on the street a few weeks agoand killed him in revenge for his father. Now the mother of the dead policeman makes complaint to the Governor of Chun Chon asking him to punish the murderer according to the law.

Ha Eung In of Ma Chang Ni outside the East Gate used bad language to a neighbor’s wife  and while drunk threw away a sack of barley belonging to his neighbor. The people in the town had him hand-cuffed and reported the case to the police station. After a few hours he recovered from the influence of hte liquor and felt ashamed of his actions and tried to kill himself by stabbing his throat with a pocket knife, but the wound was not serious. The police made him apologize to the woman and he paid the cost of the barley he had destroyed.

A former judge of the Seoul Court, Yi Do Ik discharged all the employees of the court while he was Judge and put in his servants in their places. Since he left the office, two of his servants have been discharged from the employ of the court. But Judge Yi Do Ik still collects one dollar from each of the two new employees on the ground that these places were intended for his servants, hence they must pay him one dollar as premium for these positions. A legal mind might perpaps reason out such an action being proper but we, not being well versed in the law, cannot see it as anything but a squeeze.

The Minister of Education memorialized the Throne severely criticizing all attempts at foreign innovations such as uniforms of the soldiers, police and the Government students; use of the unmun; adoption of the Gregorian calendar and freedom of debate in the Cabinet. We will deal with it in the next issue.

The Russia Minister and Mrs. Waeber and the French Minister M. du Plancy visitied the Russian and French Schools in Pak Dong Tuesday. One of the students presented Mrs. Waeber with a handsome boquet tied with ribbons representing the French and Russian colors, in the name of the teachers and students. He also delivered a short address in French. The exercises were thoroughly enjoyed by those who were present.

Leiut. CM Knepper and Asst. Engineer ES Kellogg of hte USS Yorktown arrived in Seoul yesterday.

The Daily News gives the following from its Berlin ccorrespondent dated April 9th. The statement from Korea that the German Consul there had joined the protest of his English and American collegues againt the King’s further stay at the Russian Legation is, I learn, completely unfounded. On the contrary, the German representative has been instructed to remain absolutely neutral. The statement, indeed sounded improbable from the beginning for it is contrary to the whole trend of Germany’s Eastern Asiatic policy, namely, not to oppose Russian interests. Shanghai Mercury.

Governor of Tai Ku reports that the insurgents in Eui Heung had been dispersed by the Tai Ku troops, but the insurgents of An Dong, Pung Ki, and Ye Chon district joined together in the last named place and they are committing most outrageous acts.

Pak Seung Pil and Kim Kang Yep of Chemulpo wanted the position of chief of coolies in the port and asked Yi Pyeong Heui, Kim Seung Heun and Song Chong Hun who are supposed to have influence in Seoul.  They made out fradulent letters supposed to have come from HRH Tai Won Kun (the then-current King’s father–tom), Hon. Yi Chai Yun, the Vice-Minister of Agriculture and Mr. Im O Chun, the Magistrate of In Chun, requesting the Governor of In Chun to appoint these men to the positions  they desire. The three culprits reeived $1,400 from Pak and Kim for the consideration of their service in securing these positions. The scheme was known to the Police Department and the three men were arrested and brought to Seoul for trial.

The German Cruiser Arcona arrived at Chemulpo on Monday. The Commander, Captain Sarnow, is expected to visit the German Counsuate in Seoul in a day or two.

Rev. Alex Kenmure returned from Chefoo the day before yesterday.

Yi Heui Kyeng of Pak Dong went to a shoe store in Won Dong a few days ago and bargained for seven pairs of shoes at $9.98. He left the store ordering to send the shoes to his house. This was done and being asked for money, Yi gave him a check for the amount, but the shoe dealer found that the check was forged. Yi was arrested by the police.

Magistrate of Juk San reports that the chief of insurgents Kim Ju Suk commands 2000 men and now they are in the Southern part of Juk San district, where they are getting more recruits and the number is increasing daily. A quick and prompt relief is requested.

Governor of Kong Ju reports that 200  insurgents were looting villages in Kong Ju and Hyo Dok districts, but 30 Kong Ju soldiers defeated them and killed several. These districts are comparitively quiet at the present.

On Sunday last the students of the Government schools in Seoul had drill exercise in Heun Yan An before a large number of Government officials and teachers.  They went through different forms of calisthenics and other drills very creditably; at the end of the exercises they sang patriotic airs and gave three cheers for His Majesty.

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Program of the 13th Jeonju International Film Festival

7th April 2012

The 13th annual Jeonju International Film Festival will open this year on April 26 and run through May 4th.   It is not too early to begin planning what movies you want to see if you are coming.  Since many of these films will later get limited theatrical releases and eventually DVD releases, even if you are not coming, you can still appreciate what will be showing.  ((All film descriptions and images are taken from the JIFF program recently made available at press conferences in Seoul and Jeonju and is not available for download on the Jiff website))   The following is a list of films, both short and feature length, in competition at the festival but this is less than a third of the total films screening. There are many more including some interesting retrospectives and numerous films from South America.  To see a full list, visit the JIFF website at 

opening film

French-Swiss filmmaker Ursula Meier’s second feature-length drama Sister (L’enfant d’en haut) is a well-made coming of age film which calmly portrays the dragging lives of the brother and sister; Simon, who has learnt a dangerous way of life between the poor valley down below and the up high ski resort of the rich, and Louise, who seems to have entered the world of grown-ups at a very young age and wanders through life aimlessly.

closing film

The 13th Jeonju International Film Festival’s closing film is A Simple Life (Tao Jie) by Ann Hui, which has been premiered last year at Venice International Film Festival and received a huge acclaim from critics. The story focuses on the relationship between film producer Roger (Andy Lau) andhis amah Tao Jie (Deanie Ip), who has served his family for over 60 years through 4 generations, which, in the film, is described more like a mother-son relationship rather than the one of usual master and servant. After Tao Jie has a stroke she seeks for a nursing home in order not to be a burden to Roger who is unable to stick by her side because of his work. Since she moves to the nursing home, how she grows accustomed to her new surroundings, the life of the people at the nursing home, the dedication and the deep affection Roger and his family feel for Tao and how she faces her death, all these stories are being depicted calmly and candidly without any sentimental blow, but masterly enough to gradually touch something deep inside our hearts. The elements such as the contrast between Asian and Western perspectives, the gap between different generations and social classes, are being handled with a subtle touch as inherent components of Hong Kong as a social and cultural complex rather than the ones for dramatic conflicts.

international competition

I initially tried to just post the images since they have the film descriptions written on them, but between the pink color and the size of the print, it is impossible to read.. for me at least.. so I will include the English descriptions written on the image below each set pictures.  For once, grammar and spelling mistakes are not mine ^^;

about the pink sky

About the Pink Sky (Japan): Izumi, whose daily routine is rating newspaper articles, finds a wallet containing a large sum of cash. She eventually returns the wallet to its owner, a wealthy high-school boy named Koki, who notices the missing money, and as compensation, asks Izumi to do something for his friend.

Ex Press (Philippines): Fiction and fact are mixed as in a dream. A dream about trains and the sinister affairs that surround them. The young filmmaker only needed one take for each scene. Metaphorically speaking, the entire country is moving, like a train, and the population suffers from institutionalized brutality.

It Looks Pretty From a Distance (Poland): Unfolding in a secluded Polish village by the woods and a river, it is a love story between a scrapper and a girl. The men’s disappearance triggers a chain of unexpected events in the strikingly beautiful surroundings, under the scorching sun human evil surfaces.

It’s the Earth, Not the Moon (Portugal): Situated in the Archipelago of Azores, Corvo is one of the autonomous regions of Portugal and the smallest island in Europe. Agriculture and dairy farming are the main industry for most of its 440 residents. Amidst beautiful scenery, the director collects and records simple but wise life stories, turning the island itself into the film’s protagonist.


Padak (Korea):  It’s a fish’s story about the struggle after he trapped in a little aquarium of a sashimi house. The fish gets in lots of trouble with the old flat fish who actually powered all over the aquarium. It’s a new vivid animation of the fish’s fierce journey.

The River Used to Be a Man (Germany): A German man makes a trip to a foggy village in Africa. His bizarre journey begins when his boatman dies. By describing how a European experiences Africa’s belief in traditional superstition after a man’s death, this film provides a fresh perspective on psychological isolation and conflict.

Southwest (Brazil): In a secluded Brazilian coastal village, where everything seems to stand still, Clarisse watches her life over the course of a day, unlike those around her who live that day just like any other. She tries to understand her obscure reality and the destiny of the people around her in a circling, disturbing sense of time.

Summer of Giacomo (Italy):  A summer day in Italy. The camera follows the deaf-mute Giacomo and a childhood girlfriend Stefi closely – in the woods, by the river – without wanting to disrupt the mystery of their relationship, between restrained sensuality and childhood games.

twilight p

Twilight Potrait (Russia) :  A social worker, a child psychologist in the middle life crisis, Marina, gets injured by policemen. She seeks revenge. Then she finally meets the initiator of the dramatic event, she decides to use her professional skills instead of common weapons.

Two Years at Sea (UK): A man called Jake lives in the middle of the forest. He is seen in all seasons, surviving frugally, passing the time with strange projects, living the radical dream he had as a younger man, a dream he spent two years working at sea to realize.

korean competition

big good

Ankorwat (Korea):  Park Il-rae dreams of a better life for his family, but is cheated out of his entire family savings. In deep despair, Il-rae decides to commit suicide together with his family. The movie reaches out to those who are hurt and forced in the corner in their lives.

Big Good (Korea):  In his mother’s absence, Hyeong-geun conspires to gain independence along with his music-loving friend. They try to rent the small room attached to his mother’s store to make some extra cash. Meantime, a senior from school encourages them to explore the vastness of the ‘World Wide Web.’

Bhikkuni- Buddhist Nuns (Korea):  Baekheungam is a training temple for female Buddhist monks keeping away from the public. There are monks who left material things and the secular world, and entered into Buddhism. The film tells the inside stories of Baekheungam; the female monks are silently stepping on for the awakening.

Fire in Hell (Korea): Ji-wol, a Buddhist monk, is excommunicated because of an inappropriate affair with a female believer. He rapes and kills another woman and leaves with her ashes for the Philippines where her family lives. However, there he falls in love with her twin sister. A shocking interpretation of karma.

 jeju prayer

Jeju Prayer (Korea):  Focusing on Mrs. Kang sang-hee’s life, she lost her husband in Jeju Uprising (March 3rd, 1948). The film views the dark-side of Jeju Island, a huge grave, which is completely opposite of the other side of the island, the famous tourist attraction. It says that the tragedy has been going on about the recent Gang-jeong village situation.

Morning Glory (Korea):   Hyun-jun, a musical actor, makes his mind to go abroad for further study. He returns to his hometown where he meets his cousin So-yeon. After getting a taste of the countryside with her, So-yeon makes the unexpected confession that she has loved him for a long time.

Sleepless Night (Korea):  2 years into marriage, the couple hesitates to have a baby. Money is the biggest obstacle. They are rushed by others around, however the pressure makes their love sturdier some time. A report about the marriage in real life, not a fantasy.

Without Father (Korea):  Two Japanese women, who have lived in Korea with a difference of a half century, go to Japan. They are Yoko in Kawashima Watkins’ So Far from the Bamboo Grove and Masako living in Korea after the marriage with a Korean. The audience will follow their journey through the views of the two women. 


Comedy (Korea):  A former comedian has been run down and run out of money. He works a part-time job as a replacement driver with a whiny baby that gives him no peace. He is faced with the irony of his life that trying to be funny and work “for fun” doesn’t bring you any in the end. 

Early Spring, Gyeongju (Korea):  After her divorce, Hee-myeong leaves Seoul for Gyeongju where her mother lives. However her ex Jun-ho follows her and begs to get back together, while she only wants to go back to the time before everything became so entangled.

Ik Hou Van Jou (Korea):  Dae-hyun works at a glass factory and is secretly in love with someone. She has been dating Joo-sung, who is Dae-hyun’s junior colleague. While their relationship is going well, Dae-hyun talks anxiously about Joo-sung behind his back to Sun-hwa.

The Day Going to Market (Korea):  The director attends his parents who come and go between Seoul and Twaechon to go to market for their restaurant twice a month. They are usual trips for him. However, in the usual trips, he reminds himself of changing things, unchanging things, and shouldn’t-change things.

white nightWhite Night (Korea):  Won-gyu, a steward, returns to Seoul 2 years after he left with a painful memory. He meets Tae-jun acquainted on the Web and they have a special night at the place of Won-gyu’s bad memory. A queer film by Leesong hee-il inspired by an actual case of random street assault by a homophobe in Jong-no.

korean short film competition


Hoarders (Korea):  Recycling workers and artists in Hwanghak-dong appear very different and opposed at first; however, through a communal system of rotation, they achieve a kind of social equilibrium. The film stands on the border between labor and art, asking questions about art’s true nature.

Kids On Board (Korea):  Geun-woo is a boy in a small mountain town. Slowly, his friends begin to move away. Even Hyun-woo, his last friend, eventually leaves. With concise cinematic rhetoric, the film shows the progressive extinction of a small village communitythrough the day of a boy left alone.

Amateur (Korea):  Yu-ri is working on the pre-production for her own film. She feels great sympathy for the middle-aged woman character, ‘Ajumma,’ although she is estranged from her own mother. Identity, self-reflection and the gap between filmmaking and real life are explored through this unique cinematic experiment.

Memories of the Night (Korea):    After breaking up with Jun-young, Hyun-ji recalls the time he first confessed his love to her. She recalls the day they went to see the skeleton Jun-young had found when he was young. Nostalgia mixes with lyricism as Hyun-ji sifts through memories of the past.

noodle fish

Who Killed Gong Jung-Hwa? (Korea):  Twenty nine-year old Jung-hwa spends her meaningless days without any desires. She embarks on a destitute journey until news of her death arrives. The director explores the plight of today’s youth, forced into endless competition and introspection.

The Arrival (Korea):  A woman who once lived in China as a Korean refugee searches for her former lover in Seoul. The film takes us on an exhausting urban journey thr ough themes of displacement and loss.

Noodle Fish (Korea):  Noodle Fish is a fresh and distinctive animated short, made with plain noodles bought from regular markets. The film tells the story of a small and sincere “noodle fish” as it struggles to leave the water.

Shadow Monster (Korea):  While a mother is asleep, a thrilling duel occurs between a child and a shadow monster. Shadow Monster is an interesting work based on the changing character of shadows depending on the angles, directions and the distance of light.


Nun (Korea):  A woman starts her job at a cell-phone plant. She cannot get used to everyone sitting and working in same monotonous manner with the same expressionless looks. Can she be of help to the man she runs into by chance outside the factor?

The House (Korea):  A window is painted on white paper and a middle aged man appears, looking like a landlord. As rent has risen, the window gradually descends from the 2nd floor, to the first floor, to the basement, until finally vanishing. The body of the man also begins to descend.

Paradise (Korea):  In the near future where water is nearly all dried up, a penguin survives by digging up canned foods on some deserted seaside. One day, the penguin finds the body of a gigantic whale and brings it home for food. But the “dead” whale suddenly opens up its eyes. 

Allegro (Korea):  Depending only on his sneakers, the courier service man weaves his way through the residential jungle, which is difficult for even cars to pass through. With thrilling agility and ingenuity, he avoids every obstacle… except his boss.


Dusts (Korea):  At an abandoned construction site at night, roaming spirits talk to us in the form of dust, rocks, broken branches and whistling wind. Interweaving small pieces of daily life, the director expresses his lament about the sense of loss for the people who have left.

Expansion of Anxiety (Korea):  Using seemingly random footage of mobs, the director creates dramatic incidents by blowing up footage, making unrelated cuts or mixing music. A skillful take on distortion and misconception in modern media and the audience’s addiction to stimulation.

Interfere (Korea): Interfere is a fascinating experimental film that captur es delicate moments produced by the convergence of water and structure, line and face. The camera tenaciously observes the splendid and unpr edictable interaction between the
bridge piers and the Han River flow.

Tree or Wood (Korea):  Trees are readily seen in our surroundings. Their wood grains are like beautiful abstract paintings. Tree Or Wood is a sharp warning about attempting to process the genuine beauty of nature and becoming obsessed with artifial beauty.

Why Does the Wind Blow? (Korea):  Why Does Wind Blow has been r econstituted from instructional 16mm films collected by the director from film archives. It presents a sensational experience through the juxtaposition of visualized movement of physical objects and the cinematic creation of time.

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Korean Movies opening on April 5th

3rd April 2012

There is only one Korean movie opening in theaters this week and, being a documentary, it is likely to have an extremely limited release.  The name of the movie is Mother and it is directed by Tae Joon-shik and features Lee So-san and Jeon Tae-sam.  Perhaps you were lucky enough to have seen the excellent Korean film A Single Spark based on the short life of Jeon Tae-il?  Mother, follows Jeon’s mother after his dramatic death for the cause of improved conditi0ns for workers. 

The following is a list of other films opening this weekend. From Europe: On Tour (fr), Free Student (fr), The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest (sweden). From Asia: Starry, Starry Night (ch), Tekken Blood Vengeance (jp). From North America: Titanic 3D (us), Conan the Barbarian (us), Hunger Game (us)

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Korean Blogathon 2012

10th February 2012


The following pst is lifted wholesale, with permission, from New Korean Cinema (  Last year was an amazing event and I can’t wait for this year’s to start!

Last year New Korean Cinema played host to the Korean Blogathon – a week which was used to try to shine the spotlight on Korean films and the people who are writing about them online. The response blew us away – over the seven days many great articles emerged from some brilliant writers and this created some interesting discussions about many varied aspects of Korean film and filmmakers. It was such a great event that we promised the Blogathon would return…. so here we go!

This year cineAWESOME! will be doing the heavy lifting by organising and hosting the event, but New Korean Cinema will be involved through both posting our own articles throughout the week as well as mirroring all of the links generated by everyone participating throughout the week on this years Blogathon page.

In order to spread the links as far as possible, all of this years links will also be mirrored by KOFFIA, Hangul Celluloid, Modern Korean Cinema and VCinema, so it’s a great opportunity to gain some exposure while discovering the many other great bloggers writing about Korean cinema within the online community.

For more information on this years event check out the Press Release from cineAWESOME! below:

Following last years successful Korean Blogathon (thanks to everyone who joined us!) New Korean Cinema and cineAWESOME! will be hosting the event again this year from 5th to the 11th March.

What’s the Korean Blogathon?

It’s a way to try to encourage as many people – including YOU! – to share and discover opinions and ideas about Korean cinema. It’s open to anyone – wherever you are around the world and whichever language you speak.

For one week we try to encourage as many people as possible to get involved writing about Korean cinema. Anything you want. Over the course of the seven days this kicks up some really interesting posts – and, most importantly, people are able to read what you’ve written and discover films and ideas that they’ve never come across before, maybe learn a little about Korean film history, or maybe even discover websites and blogs they were previously unaware of.

Ideas for blog posts might include reviews, top tens, opinions on favorite directors / actors / genres, whatever you want – it just needs to be related to Korean cinema in some way. Last year we had fifty blogs participate, generating one hundred and fifty posts!

Check out the links for last years event here. This year the event will be hosted by cineAWESOME! and mirrored at New Korean Cinema.

All you need to do to join us is to write a post – or as many posts as you want over the seven days – on your blog or website during the week of 5th to the 11th of March then send an e-mail to with your link to and we’ll post a link to you from the site. You can also post your own links on our Facebook page or we will do it for you, and we’ll Tweet links to your posts throughout the week: the Twitter tag for the week will be #koreablog.

So don’t forget: 5th to the 11th March is the Korean Blogathon. Get involved!

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