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Korean Peninsula Challenge (Official, August 2021)

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Korean Peninsula Challenge (Official, August 2021)

#1

Post by sol »

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Korean Peninsula Challenge

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Goal
Watch movies from the Korean Peninsula. Discuss them.

Challenge runs from August 1, 2021 to August 31, 2021 in your local time zone.

Eligible Countries
- South Korea
- North Korea
- Korea (pre-1950s) *

* There are a few recent TV shows that have been incorrectly tagged as pre-1950s Korea on IMDb. Please don't choose one of these for the Bonus Challenge.

Rules
- Each feature film (over 40 minutes) counts as one entry.
- 80 minutes of short films or miniseries/TV episodes counts as one entry.
- Films must be watched one at a time and at single speed (not sped up).
- Rewatches are allowed and are good for the soul.
- Please include year of release when listing your viewings.
- If you don't include country, I'll assume your viewings are South Korean.

I reserve the right to exclude participants who intentionally number their viewings incorrectly. If you play the game, you're expected to play properly.

Eligibility
For films to qualify for this Challenge, they need to have an eligible country listed as a production country on the film's IMDb page. If you've seen something that you strongly believe should be eligible and isn't, please submit a correction to IMDb and you can include the film as soon as IMDb accepts your correction. Films by ex-pat directors (e.g. Park Chan-wook's Stoker) are not eligible unless they meet the IMDb country listing requirement. I know it isn't ideal that I have to put in hard and fast rules like this, but you wouldn't believe some of the random stuff that participants have tried to include in previous years without such guidelines in place.

Co-Productions
A number of Korean Peninsula films are co-productions with non-eligible countries. Please use some common sense to determine whether these films really represent Korean cinema. As a general guide, a film that has both Germany and South Korea as production countries but which is filmed in Korean with a mostly Koream cast and crew is eligible; a film that has South Korea listed as a second production country but is filmed in English with a mostly Anglophonic cast and crew isn't eligible. I am happy to provide advice for any borderline cases. In most cases, co-productions are eligible unless the involvement of the listed production country is insignificant, as is the case with August Rush, Hotel Transylvania and a few others that cannot really be argued as Korean.

Deadline
Final results will be posted between 1:30pm and 4:30pm GMT on September 2 - at which point it will have been September everywhere in the world for more than a whole day. While you are welcome to post updates beyond this point, any such updates will not be included in the final results. Your choice whether you miss the deadline or not; besides, if it's September on your side of the world, shouldn't you be starting on one of next month's challenges?

Stuck for ideas of what to watch? Look no further:

Official Lists
100 Korean Films (Korean Film Archive)
AMP's Essential South Korean Movies
Korean Screen's 100 Greatest Korean Films

Non-Official Lists
iCM Forum's Favourite Korean Films
All-Time Korean Box Office
Korean Film Archive movies on Youtube
Film 2.0's Top 37 Korean Films (2002)
The Chosun Ilbo's Top 50 Korean Films
Film Society of Lincoln Center's 60 Years of South Korean Cinema
Motion Pictures Association of Korea - Grand Bell Award - Best Film
South Korean submissions for the Foreign Language Film Oscar, 1961 to 2011

This Challenge has been run three times before in an Official capacity:

2019 Challenge - hosted by sol and won by Traveller with 68 points
2014 Challenge - hosted by Knaldskalle and won by mjf314 with 15 points
2012 Challenge - hosted by Knaldskalle and won by aces with 41 points

This thread will be updated at least once every 48 hours (more often if I am around and feel like it). Please list new films seen in a new post.

Participants
Rank Korean Tourist Total # of Watches
1 Traveller 73
2 flavo5000 57
3 Lu-Chin 38
3 sol 38
5 jdidaco 28
6 tommy_leazaq 24
7 Mario Gaborović 20
8 Knaldskalle 14
8 OldAle1 14
10 DudeLanez 13
11 ororama 12
12 Armoreska 9
13 AB537 3
13 blocho 3
13 hurluberlu 3
16 Arkantos 2
16 Lakigigar 2
16 maxwelldeux 2
16 zzzorf 2
20 mjf314 1


Bonus Challenge #1: Watch something from Pre-1950s Korea

This challenge will be won by the person who watches the most films from Korea before the country split. Follow the link in the previous sentence for suggestions. In order to play, you need to specify that the film that you have watched is from pre-1950s Korea! 2019 Bonus Challenge Winner: Knaldskalle.

1. DudeLanez (3 films)
2. flavo5000 (1 film)

Bonus Challenge #2: Watch something from North Korea

This challenge will be won by the person who watches the most films from North Korea. Follow the link in the previous sentence for IMDb's suggestions. In order to play, you need to specify that the film that you have watched is from North Korea! 2019 Bonus Challenge Winner: Knaldskalle.

1. Armoreska (9 films)
2. OldAle1 (3 films)
3. Knaldskalle (2 films)
4. DudeLanez (1 film)
4. flavo5000 (1 film)
4. sol (1 film)
Last edited by sol on September 2nd, 2021, 1:30 pm, edited 16 times in total.
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#2

Post by Traveller »

Thanks for hosting, sol. I have a few films lined up.
ICM
September Challenge: ImageImage
But at the bottom, the immanent philosopher sees in the entire universe only the deepest longing for absolute annihilation, and it is as if he clearly hears the call that permeates all spheres of heaven: Redemption! Redemption! Death to our life! and the comforting answer: you will all find annihilation and be redeemed!
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#3

Post by Torgo »

sol wrote: July 30th, 2021, 9:52 am Bonus Challenge #2: Watch something from North Korea
Pulgasari (1985) all the way! The background story with the abduction of a South Korean director is insane and itself worth a movie ..

Oh, eh, the challenge. I'll probably pass, but keep them coming, love some short reviews and screenshots! (Hi flavo, I know you're reading this)
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#4

Post by mjf314 »

Can you add the Korean Screen list to the first post? It's likely to be official in the future, in case anyone wants to start working on it.

I highly recommend House of Hummingbird, one of the best Korean films that I've seen. It's not on any official lists yet, but it's #21 on Korean Screen.
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#5

Post by Melvelet »

List of movies available online with English subtitles: North Korea
List of movies available online with English subtitles: South Korea

I will add North Korea and update South Korea (which includes most of Pre-50s Korea I think)

EDIT: done
Last edited by Melvelet on August 2nd, 2021, 10:00 am, edited 2 times in total.
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#6

Post by Torgo »

Link doesn't work for me, private maybe?
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#7

Post by sol »

@Torgo - yes, I have Pulgasari lined up to watch this month

@mjf - I will add that KOFA replacement (?) list to the OP when I do the first OP update

@Melvelvet - will be interesting to see what you come up with for North Korea
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#8

Post by sol »

AND it starts! First in. :D

1. The Thieves (2012) South Korea

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Often described as South Korea's answer to Ocean's Eleven, this crime caper about two different bands of thieves cooperating for a major heist is certainly entertaining. The film never quite matches the classiness of the Soderbergh film though; there are great stunts (leaping between balconies) and fun small cons (lifting wallets) but the film lacks supersaturated colours and the character dynamics get confusing as the film is built on distrust, not friendship.
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#9

Post by sol »

Korea
1. The Thieves (2012) South Korea
2. The Wailing (2016) South Korea

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Clocking in at over two and a half hours, this is a slow-burn affair and not necessarily for the better for it. The highlights are the various attacks here, the protagonist's nightmares and his daughter's unhinged behaviour (a la Regan in The Exorcist), however, any such scenes are sporadic, with much of the film instead spent on conversations. The plot is also very convoluted; I would have preferred more dog attacks are cheeks bitten off and less exposition.

And this gives me an extra check on:
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#10

Post by Traveller »

01. 1987: When the Day Comes (2017) - 5/10
02. 2009: Lost Memories (2002) - 7/10
03. Ardor (2002) - 5/10
ICM
September Challenge: ImageImage
But at the bottom, the immanent philosopher sees in the entire universe only the deepest longing for absolute annihilation, and it is as if he clearly hears the call that permeates all spheres of heaven: Redemption! Redemption! Death to our life! and the comforting answer: you will all find annihilation and be redeemed!
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#11

Post by DudeLanez »

1. Hanyo (The Housemaid, 1960, Ki-young Kim) 6,5/10
2. Obaltan (Aimless Bullet, 1961, Hyun-mok Yoo) 7,0/10
3. Bakha satang (Peppermint Candy, 1999, Chang-dong Lee) 6,0/10
Korean Peninsula Challenge
1. Hanyo (The Housemaid, 1960, Ki-young Kim) 6,5/10
2. Obaltan (Aimless Bullet, 1961, Hyun-mok Yoo) 7,0/10
3. Bakha satang (Peppermint Candy, 1999, Chang-dong Lee) 6,0/10
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#12

Post by Lakigigar »

1. Salinui Chueok (Memories of Murders, 2003, Joon-Ho Bong) 7/10

I hope i'll be able to watch a lot of movies, there are certainly a lot i have (and want) to watch.
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#13

Post by Melvelet »

Melvelet wrote: July 31st, 2021, 12:23 pm List of movies available online with English subtitles: North Korea
List of movies available online with English subtitles: South Korea

I will add North Korea and update South Korea (which includes most of Pre-50s Korea I think)

EDIT: done
Sorry, it's working now + updated + North Korea added
Current recommendation: Davandeh (1984) AKA The Runner


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#14

Post by Lakigigar »

Spoiler
1. Salinui Chueok (Memories of Murders, 2003, Joon-Ho Bong) 7/10
2. Gwoemul (The Host, 2006, Joon-ho Bong) 7/10
Last edited by Lakigigar on August 2nd, 2021, 1:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#15

Post by sol »

Korea
1. The Thieves (2012) South Korea
2. The Wailing (2016) South Korea
3. The Witness (2018) South Korea

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Scared of retribution from the killer after witnessing a murder from his balcony window, a nervous man avoids phoning the police, but paranoia soon begins to eat away at him in this intriguing Korean thriller that feels halfway between Rear Window and 70s Polanski in the best possible way. Not everything feels realistic here, but if one views the film metaphorically, it all works really well - with the killer representing the protagonist's conscience/guilt at inaction.

In other news, OP was updated approximately 4.5 hours ago. :ICM: I will aim to update it at around the same time every 48 hours. :ICM: :ICM:
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#16

Post by flavo5000 »

Torgo wrote: July 30th, 2021, 5:11 pm
sol wrote: July 30th, 2021, 9:52 am Bonus Challenge #2: Watch something from North Korea
Pulgasari (1985) all the way! The background story with the abduction of a South Korean director is insane and itself worth a movie ..

Oh, eh, the challenge. I'll probably pass, but keep them coming, love some short reviews and screenshots! (Hi flavo, I know you're reading this)
Well, I'm feeling kinda burned out on the reviews after the Run the Actor Challenge last month. I may do screenshots though.
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#17

Post by Traveller »

04. Attack the Gas Station! (1999) - 3/10
05. Children... (2011) - 6/10
06. Daytime Drinking (2008) - 6/10
ICM
September Challenge: ImageImage
But at the bottom, the immanent philosopher sees in the entire universe only the deepest longing for absolute annihilation, and it is as if he clearly hears the call that permeates all spheres of heaven: Redemption! Redemption! Death to our life! and the comforting answer: you will all find annihilation and be redeemed!
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#18

Post by Knaldskalle »

1. The Last Witness (Lee, Doo-young, 1980). This one's a bit long, meanders a bit, but is never boring. It's just that I know it could've been cut by quite a few minutes without losing much of substance. A "hired-for-the-occasion" cop investigates a murder that quickly leads back to certain events during the Korean War that subsequently shaped the lives of all involved. A mix of war action and who-dunnit, this is surprisingly dark for a Korean movie of this time (1980). It's even prefaced by a brief blurb from the director about how dark it is, so clearly it wasn't the usual fare. It does, though, serve as an "explanation" of sorts as to why some of the more recent Korean movies are at times really dark (Ggotip comes to mind).
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#19

Post by flavo5000 »

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1. Sasaeng gyeoldan a.k.a. Bloody Tie (Ho Choi, 2006)
Incredibly seedy, lurid crime thriller. Not bad but seems to almost be trying too hard.

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2. Bunshinsaba a.k.a. Ouija Board (Byeong-ki Ahn, 2004)
Coming in the wake of the Asian horror glut, this is a decent teen horror flick but feels incredibly predictable.

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3. Killerdeului suda a.k.a. Guns & Talks (Jin Jang, 2001)
This wise-cracking action comedy thriller about a group of tight-knit hitmen feels like it's trying too hard to be equal parts Scorsese and Tarantino without really being as good as either one. Still, it has its moments.
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#20

Post by DudeLanez »

4. Pulgasari (1985, Sang-ok Shin) 3/10 #North Korea
Korean Peninsula Challenge
1. Hanyo (The Housemaid, 1960, Ki-young Kim) 6,5/10
2. Obaltan (Aimless Bullet, 1961, Hyun-mok Yoo) 7/10
3. Bakha satang (Peppermint Candy, 1999, Chang-dong Lee) 6/10
4. Pulgasari (1985, Sang-ok Shin) 3/10 #North Korea
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#21

Post by sol »

Korea
1. The Thieves (2012) South Korea
2. The Wailing (2016) South Korea
3. The Witness (2018) South Korea
4. Pulgasari (1985) North Korea

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While the special effects vary in effectiveness with some poor rear projection, the monster itself looks great here, especially towards the beginning of the film when it is small and indeed "cute" as the characters observe (see above). There is much manic energy in the mix as the tiny monster jumps up and takes large bites out of swords (it eats iron), much to the bewilderment of the antagonists. Things get a tad less crazy as the monster grows larger though.

In other news, I will be updating the OP in around 18 hours. :ICM:
That's plenty of time if you want to join myself and Lanez on the North Korea leaderboard before I next update the OP. ;)
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#22

Post by Traveller »

07. Fighter in the Wind (2004) - 5/10
08. Jangnam (1985) - 5/10
09. Flower Island (2001) - 7/10
ICM
September Challenge: ImageImage
But at the bottom, the immanent philosopher sees in the entire universe only the deepest longing for absolute annihilation, and it is as if he clearly hears the call that permeates all spheres of heaven: Redemption! Redemption! Death to our life! and the comforting answer: you will all find annihilation and be redeemed!
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#23

Post by Mario Gaborović »

01. Hwasango (2001) - South Korea
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#24

Post by OldAle1 »

1. Chugyeokja / The Chaser (Na Hong-jin, 2008)

Another ex-cop. I think ex-cops are more common in crime/action flicks than currently-employed-as-cops, certainly ya seem them an awful lot, particularly in the more action-oriented and gritty crime stories, where you need somebody who will go off on the bag guys, which real cops aren't supposed to do, right? Anyway...here we cop-turned-pimp Kim Yoon-seok who's looking for one of his ladies who hasn't shown up for work, and he quickly finds out that there may be a competitor stealing his women - but it turns out not to be another pimp, but a PSYCHO KILLER. He somehow gets sort-of reinstated as a cop, and tries to hunt down the guy, who gets captured - for a while - and divulges that the most recent missing hooker (who has a cute little 7-year-old daughter that our hero of course befriends) might still be alive. So, a race against time! This reminded me quite a lot of Dirty Harry in many of the basic plot elements, though it's apparently based on a true story. It's pretty tense and makes great use of Seoul's twisty, narrow, hilly streets and alleys, and it's a solid thriller overall with a few good action scenes, especially a nice little foot chase, but like too many SK genre films it's a bit too long, and I kind of didn't buy our hero's quick turn from totally cynical pimp to protector of little girls. Worth seeing but not for me as great as all the fuss that was made about it.
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#25

Post by Lu-Chin »

1. Hanyo (1960) 8/10
2. Geuk jang jeon (2005) 7/10
3. Nugu-ui ttal-do anin Hae-won (2013) 7/10
4. Ag-o (1996) 6/10
5. Haebaragi (2006) 7/10
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#26

Post by DudeLanez »

5. Nabbeun namja (Bad Guy, 2001, Ki-duk Kim) 6/10
6. Hae anseon (The Coast Guard, 2002, Ki-duk Kim) 3,5/10
Korean Peninsula Challenge
1. Hanyo (The Housemaid, 1960, Ki-young Kim) 6,5/10
2. Obaltan (Aimless Bullet, 1961, Hyun-mok Yoo) 7/10
3. Bakha satang (Peppermint Candy, 1999, Chang-dong Lee) 6/10
4. Pulgasari (1985, Sang-ok Shin) 3/10 #North Korea
5. Nabbeun namja (Bad Guy, 2001, Ki-duk Kim) 6/10
6. Hae anseon (The Coast Guard, 2002, Ki-duk Kim) 3,5/10
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#27

Post by sol »

Korea
1. The Thieves (2012) South Korea
2. The Wailing (2016) South Korea
3. The Witness (2018) South Korea
4. Pulgasari (1985) North Korea
5. 301, 302 (1995) South Korea

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This has a pretty cool 2LDK vibe as unspoken animosity grows between neighbours as one continuously cooks meals for her bulimic neighbour who tries to push the meals away and is forced to throw them out on the sly. There is also a lot of dark humour as she tries to force-feed her neighbour. Where the film really gets interesting though is when the pair realise that they both have traumatic pasts and they begin to share, leading to an unforgettable conclusion.

Updated the OP around 3 hours ago. :ICM: Next OP update in around 45 hours time. B)
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#28

Post by jdidaco »

Thank you for hosting, sol!

(All my viewings will be from South Korea)

(Screenshots from 'Dasepo sonyo' & 'Dear Dictator'),

Image

1. Eolgul eopnun geotdul (Faceless Things, Kim Kyung-mook, 2005) 7.5/10
2. Dasepo sonyo (Dasepo Naughty Girls, Lee Je-yong, 2006) 7.5/10
3. Himalayaeui sonyowa (With a Girl of Himalaya, Jeon Soo-il, 2008) 7/10
4. Chin-ae-ha-neun Ji-do-ja-dong-ji-kke (Dear Dictator, Lee Sang-woo, 2014) 7.5/10

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#29

Post by OldAle1 »

Three Koreas
1. Chugyeokja / The Chaser (Na Hong-jin, 2008)
Have there been great films made in the land ruled with an iron fist by three generations of the Kim family for the past seven decades? Have there even been any particularly good ones? If not, why not? Other authoritarian regimes, including Nazi Germany, Stalinist Russia, Mao's China, and the Islamic State of Iran have produced significant numbers of worthwhile films, even masterpieces - and even some films that criticize, at least subtly, the overlords of their states. North Korea seems a little different for some reason, perhaps in part because filmmaking was still in it's infancy on the peninsula when the country came into being, and therefore easier for the Kim family and it's propaganda chiefs to shape to their will? I don't know, and minimal research so far hasn't given me any proper answers. Perhaps I will do some investigating this month, or others will. At any rate, the first two films I've seen are not terribly promising.

2. Pulgasari (Sang-ok Shin, 1985) DPRK

I haven't read Paul Fischer's book about the abduction of the director and his once-and-future wife actress Choi Eun-hee yet; it's been on the very long reading list since I first heard about (and I could have sworn it had been turned into a movie, but nope, not yet anyway). Perhaps it will provide some context for this film and the others he directed before it at the behest of his jailer Kim Jong-il, but I'm not sure it's necessary in this particular case. What you have here is a very juvenile, extremely cheap kaiju film wherein the titular monster is created in jail by an old villager just before he dies, brought to life by his daughter's blood, and used by the poor peasants to avenge themselves on the feudal government for it's crimes against them. The Pulgasari starts out very small but grows and grows when it eats iron until it's eventually perhaps 20-30 meters tall - and basically invulnerable. As sol points out, it's kind of cute in the early parts of the film, but later on when it's larger and some of the most awful rear projection ever is used, it's a bit harder to take. Still it's fascinating to see a kaiju film set in a rural, feudal context - I don't think it's the first one, but when I think of these films I think King Kong in New York, or Gojira in Tokyo, not a bunch of peasants fighting a feudal overlord. So that's neat, and the lack of overt propaganda elements, and the very Christian elements sprinkled here and there, the overt self-sacrifice at the end, are interesting and make this less painful to watch than I expected. Still not really good or anything, but probably a perfect film to start off this part of the challenge.

3. Han nyeohaksaengeui ilgi / The Schoolgirl's Diary (In-hak Jang, 2007) DPRK

This film on the other hand is probably closer to what I've long imagined most of the North's cinema to be - very overt propaganda extolling the virtues of the Dear Leader, although to be fair most of that comes in the second half. The first half is mostly just kind of a dull family story about mom, absent dad, dad's mother, and two teenaged girls trying to make it in a rural setting, with Su-ryeon being the diarist of the title and speaking often in voiceover. She's torn between going into science, or the military (I guess conscription was option for girls), or literature, while her sister Su-ok is a big football star on the school team. Father is away doing the Lord's, I mean Kim's work in a factory and most of the film's drama, if it can be called that, revolves around Su-ryeon blaming her father for being absent and not helping mother enough, but in the end of course we learn it's all for the glory of the Fatherland. This has some pretty nice photography - the wintry scenes in particular - and it starts out all right, but the overt moralizing propaganda that completely takes over in the last 30-40 minutes really kills it.

I should add that this has a real "timeless" quality to it - but not really in a good way. Throughout the film it felt like it took place in, and was made in, the 1950s or 1960s, with nary a cell phone or computer or modern car in sight - until near the end when we do see some PCs that look like they date to the late 1980s or early 1990s. But the clothing, behaviors, etc, all struck me as rather "old-fashioned" throughout - not that my knowledge of Korean culture in general is super-strong, but still, South Korean films from this period certainly have a much more modern feel. So much for the DPRK being an advanced nation...
Last edited by OldAle1 on August 4th, 2021, 2:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#30

Post by Torgo »

So will Pulgasari become the most-watched film of the challenge? :D
OldAle1 wrote: August 4th, 2021, 1:14 pm I haven't read Paul Fischer's book about the abduction of the director and his once-and-future wife actress Choi Eun-hee yet; it's been on the very long reading list since I first heard about (and I could have sworn it had been turned into a movie, but nope, not yet anyway).
Well, there was a documentary about this bizarre case not too long ago. Maybe that's what you've remembered?
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#31

Post by OldAle1 »

Torgo wrote: August 4th, 2021, 1:34 pm So will Pulgasari become the most-watched film of the challenge? :D
OldAle1 wrote: August 4th, 2021, 1:14 pm I haven't read Paul Fischer's book about the abduction of the director and his once-and-future wife actress Choi Eun-hee yet; it's been on the very long reading list since I first heard about (and I could have sworn it had been turned into a movie, but nope, not yet anyway).
Well, there was a documentary about this bizarre case not too long ago. Maybe that's what you've remembered?
Oh yeah that's it. I remember reading about a feature though, or perhaps that was just in a dream. Anyway both book and doc look worthwhile but I'm sure I won't get to them this month - I've just started a book on the 1953 coup in Iran which I should have read a month ago :lol:
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#32

Post by flavo5000 »

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4. Acasia (Ki-hyeong Park, 2003)
Very slow-paced but at times visually inventive Korean horror about an adopted boy with an unusual fixation to an Acacia tree in his backyard. Not amazing but worth a watch if you want something a little different from the usual K-horror.

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5. Comrade Kim Goes Flying (Nicholas Bonner, Anja Daelemans, 2012) NORTH KOREA
This is your pretty standard brightly colored romantic comedy about a female coal miner who transfers to the Construction Brigade in order to attempt to achieve her dream of becoming a circus acrobat. :blink: But for real, this honestly isn't terrible. Certainly no masterpiece, it's far too fluffy and artificial to be great. But it does mostly (but not entirely) avoid overt NK propaganda which is nice. The movie does have a hilariously out of place fixation with showing everyone eating large buffets of food almost constantly.

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6. Mimong a.k.a. Sweet Dream (Ju-nam Yang, 1936) Pre-1950 KOREA
Pretty bland melodrama about a woman abandoning her family to bone some shady dude. Really not very good.
Spoiler
1. Sasaeng gyeoldan a.k.a. Bloody Tie (Ho Choi, 2006)
2. Bunshinsaba a.k.a. Ouija Board (Byeong-ki Ahn, 2004)
3. Killerdeului suda a.k.a. Guns & Talks (Jin Jang, 2001)
4. Acasia (Ki-hyeong Park, 2003)
5. Comrade Kim Goes Flying (Nicholas Bonner, Anja Daelemans, 2012) NORTH KOREA
6. Mimong a.k.a. Sweet Dream (Ju-nam Yang, 1936) Pre-1950 KOREA
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#33

Post by Traveller »

10. Jealousy Is My Middle Name (2002) - 6/10
11. House of Hummingbird (2018) - 7/10
12. Han Gong-ju (2013) - 8/10
ICM
September Challenge: ImageImage
But at the bottom, the immanent philosopher sees in the entire universe only the deepest longing for absolute annihilation, and it is as if he clearly hears the call that permeates all spheres of heaven: Redemption! Redemption! Death to our life! and the comforting answer: you will all find annihilation and be redeemed!
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#34

Post by DudeLanez »

7. Samaria (Samaritan Girl, 2004, Ki-duk Kim) 7/10
Korean Peninsula Challenge
1. Hanyo (The Housemaid, 1960, Ki-young Kim) 6,5/10
2. Obaltan (Aimless Bullet, 1961, Hyun-mok Yoo) 7/10
3. Bakha satang (Peppermint Candy, 1999, Chang-dong Lee) 6/10
4. Pulgasari (1985, Sang-ok Shin) 3/10 #North Korea
5. Nabbeun namja (Bad Guy, 2001, Ki-duk Kim) 6/10
6. Hae anseon (The Coast Guard, 2002, Ki-duk Kim) 3,5/10
7. Samaria (Samaritan Girl, 2004, Ki-duk Kim) 7/10
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#35

Post by Knaldskalle »

2. The Hut (Lee Doo-young, 1981)
3. The Eldest Son (Jangnam) (Lee Doo-young, 1985).

Without intending to I seem to have watched 3 in a row by the same director... The Hut is a quasi-horror movie about a family with a nasty secret. It's fine. The Eldest Son is a family drama about the impact of modernization (Westernization?) and its clash with classic Korean culture and values. It's also fine, but at times it enters the usual overwrought emotions territory that's so common to Korean movies.

Spoiler
1. The Last Witness (Lee Doo-young, 1980)
2. The Hut (Lee Doo-young, 1981)
3. The Eldest Son (Jangnam) (Lee Doo-young, 1985).
ImageImageImageImage

Please don't hurt yourself, talk to someone.
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#36

Post by sol »

Korea
1. The Thieves (2012) South Korea
2. The Wailing (2016) South Korea
3. The Witness (2018) South Korea
4. Pulgasari (1985) North Korea
5. 301, 302 (1995) South Korea
6. #Alive (2020) South Korea

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Given the hashtag title, this zombie flick sounds like a look at social media during a zombie apocalypse. Au contraire, the film is about a young man trying to survive the outbreak when he loses internet connectivity. Promising as this might sound, the film is not about helpless youths sans the internet, and the lack of online activity mostly just makes it feel like an older zombie movie. There is a sweet cross-window romance in the mix, but this is mostly pretty eh.
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#37

Post by sol »

Korea
1. The Thieves (2012) South Korea
2. The Wailing (2016) South Korea
3. The Witness (2018) South Korea
4. Pulgasari (1985) North Korea
5. 301, 302 (1995) South Korea
6. #Alive (2020) South Korea
7. Insane (2016) South Korea

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It sounds a lot like Unsane as this thriller circles around a young woman forced to stay in an insane asylum when clearly mentally sound. Alas, while this a pivotal plot point, it is not the focus here; all of the asylum scenes occur as flashbacks as the tale instead focuses on an investigative journalist talking to the young woman afterwards. The journalist is a really dull character and the young woman's subplot lacks urgency given it all happened in the past.

In other news, I will be updating the OP in around 18 hours time. :ICM:
That's plenty of time if you want to join flavo on the pre-50s Korea leaderboard before I next update the OP. ;)
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#38

Post by Traveller »

13. Human, Space, Time and Human (2018) - 7/10
14. The Woman of Fire '82 (1982) - 6/10
15. Last Witness (1980) - 7/10
ICM
September Challenge: ImageImage
But at the bottom, the immanent philosopher sees in the entire universe only the deepest longing for absolute annihilation, and it is as if he clearly hears the call that permeates all spheres of heaven: Redemption! Redemption! Death to our life! and the comforting answer: you will all find annihilation and be redeemed!
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#39

Post by flavo5000 »

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7. Incheon sangryuk jakjeon a.k.a. Operation Chromite John H. Lee, 2016)
This film basically takes the Battle of Inchon in the Korean War and drastically fictionalizes it, turning into a Michael Bay-esque action spree. Pretty meh.

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8. Pieta (Ki-duk Kim, 2012)
Ki-duk Kim seemed to specialize in fucked up, insular dramas, like a Korean Michael Haneke, and Pieta is certainly one of his most bleak films. It's well-made and methodically paced but ultimately I'm not sure it rises above it's shock value premise.

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9. Dragon Wars: D-War (Hyung-rae Shim, 2007)
Kaiju + Wuxia + poorly aged CGI + Roland Emmerich-style bad acting and disaster shenanigans = a crappy movie.
Spoiler
1. Sasaeng gyeoldan a.k.a. Bloody Tie (Ho Choi, 2006)
2. Bunshinsaba a.k.a. Ouija Board (Byeong-ki Ahn, 2004)
3. Killerdeului suda a.k.a. Guns & Talks (Jin Jang, 2001)
4. Acasia (Ki-hyeong Park, 2003)
5. Comrade Kim Goes Flying (Nicholas Bonner, Anja Daelemans, 2012) NORTH KOREA
6. Mimong a.k.a. Sweet Dream (Ju-nam Yang, 1936) Pre-1950 KOREA
7. Incheon sangryuk jakjeon a.k.a. Operation Chromite John H. Lee, 2016)
8. Pieta (Ki-duk Kim, 2012)
9. Dragon Wars: D-War (Hyung-rae Shim, 2007)
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#40

Post by Mario Gaborović »

02. Dalkomhan insaeng (2005) - South Korea

Spoiler
01. Hwasango (2001) - South Korea
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