December 29, 2007

Attack the Gas Station: It's a Gas Alright


I haven't had much luck with Korean comedies. So imagine how thoroughly tickled I was by Attack the Gas Station. It's not just that I laughed out loud a few times; it's that for the last half hour I couldn't stop smiling—maybe in part because that culturally freaky, ultraviolent slapstick was over. Attribute my unstoppable grin to Park Jeong-woo's screenplay, a script which understands exactly what makes a teen comedy great (even if the characters are a little older): The story has to begin by representing the rebellious spirit then end by presenting the less exuberant rewards of growing up. These four buddies—an artist, a rocker, an athlete, and a moron—are never meant to be realistic portrayals of disaffected youth on a criminal lark. They're comically instructive ones whose haircuts shorthand for character development and whose ability to change lives simply by being themselves borders on the magical. Director Kim Sang-jin (who also did Ghost House, another guilty pleasure) brings a nice sense of visual flair to the proceedings by opening a few scenes upside down or occasionally shooting from a corny POV. I don't fault him. Deep-seeded irreverence is Attack the Gas Station's greatest charm.

December 23, 2007

Samaritan Girl: Daddy's Sweetheart Is Doing It


When Samaritan Girl starts off, the plot is perfectly sordid. Two pretty young things are earning money to go to Europe by pimping the dumber one out as a prostitute. The sex is all in good fun though. For the never-met-a-guy-I-didn't-like-doing girl, whoring is a harmless way to meet new people and learn about their jobs. (He's nice. He's a musician!) But for the other, it's an increasing source of jealousy that must be assuaged with a lesbian spongebath. They're about ten customers shy of Paris (I assume) when the happy hooker leaps out the window to land on her numbskull head. Anything but prison! Subsequently, you'd think that her best friend forever was the one who'd had her brains rattled as she proceeds to contact all the former johns and get nasty (in a sweet way) then refunds their money. Cause and effect is not this movie's strong point. When the live girl's father—who happens to work in the Vice Squad—discovers his baby is peddling her booty, he can't find a way to talk to her about it probably because teens are so...difficult. So he stalks the customers. Director Kim Ki-duk won a Silver Bear for Samaritan Girl. I'm guessing this says reams about parent-child relationships in Germany.

December 16, 2007

301/302: What Really Counts for Women


It's hard not to imagine that scenarist Lee Suh-goon's 301/302 was inspired by a found box of papers by a now-dead radical feminist from the 1970s. The central thesis plays out between two single women who reside across the hall from each other and who conveniently represent diametrically opposed aspects of stifled personhood. In apartment 301 lives a divorcee (Bang Eun-jin) who loves to cook, eat, screw, scream, and be complimented. You'd say she was a carefree spirit if she hadn't cooked the family dog then fed it to her husband in a flashback. In apartment 302 lives an anorexic intellectual (Hwang Sin-hye) who hates sausage, was molested by her stepdad the butcher, and could probably resolve all that inner turmoil if her editor let her write in the first person for goodness sake. I kid you not. Eventually, the two become one as the food-fetishist makes a stew out of the grim-faced bulimic. I kept waiting for someone to say, "Eat me." No such luck. A little lesbianism would have gone a long way amid the psycho-symbolism. The closest we get is having the surviving tenant steal the starving tenant's smart bob of a hairstyle posthumously. Women can be so vindictive! Down with the patriarchy.

December 8, 2007

Phone: Dial "M" for Misbehavior


Adultery. Incest. Murder. There's a decent number of heinous crimes committed in Phone but the worst is not returning calls or text messages from loved ones. In Ahn Byeong-ki's technophobic ghost story, a spurned succubus exacts revenge on anyone unlucky enough to be assigned her cellphone number by delivering "calls for their death." What final utterance she relates into the ear piece is never made clear but it must be pretty terrible since a car crash, a ruined manicure, and an eye-gouging result. Eventually, she has the decency to concentrate her anger on those who actually led to her untimely demise but not before she's driven a sex-crimes reporter (Ha Ji-won) to the brink. Ha, a scream queen in Asia, is certainly believable as the next slated victim who doesn't change her number because she wants to get to the root of the story and demystify her hallucinogenic visions, yet Phone's real star is Eun Seo-woo as the little girl possessed by the avenging spirit. Eun is one of those creepy little kids who can look downright evil one second then sweet and charming the next. You're never sure whether you should feel bad for her or whether someone should hit her over the head with a brick. It's your call.

December 1, 2007

The Brotherhood of War: Boy's Life


I never considered that the love that dares not speak its name could be that between two brothers but such is the supposition of The Brotherhood of War, Kang Je-gyu's wacky war pic about two siblings drafted into service (and a weird battle of wills) during the Korean War. The opening sequence has the two young men feeding each other, sharing a popsicle, and fetishizing shoes. What with the string section in the background, you almost expect to see a class-usurping gay romance unfold before your disbelieving eyes. Instead, amid the prettily photographed explosions and hand-to-hand combat, what transpires is the making of a warrior—and a ruthless, bloodthirsty, wild-eyed one at that. Naturally, the younger, prettier sibling (Won Bin) is the conscience of the movie and the hunkier older one (Jang Dong-kun) is the fearless fighter. But the baby brother cries so much and seems so unappreciative of the butch one's self-sacrifices, perverse and self-aggrandizing as they might end up being, that you feel disappointed that the moralizer's head isn't blown off in some artful fashion with snow coming down from above and grenade-propelled dirt rising up from below. Can't blame communism for that.

November 25, 2007

Champion: The Man Who Wears Gloves


If you've ever seen a championship boxing match, then you know that while the lightweights certainly can't beat the heavyweights, they're nevertheless a hell of a lot scrappier, tougher, even scarier since they haven't got an ounce of fat to cushion any of the furiously thrown blows. Champion, Kwak Kyung-taek's biopic on South Korea's world-class contender Kim Deuk-gu, doesn't tell one fighter's rags to riches story, or traffic in his poetic inarticulacies of rage, though it could have done either given its subject matter. Instead, the flick relates the ascent of a fairly likable, none-too-bright pugilist who seems motivated by cultural imperatives and grounded by the respect that accompanies accomplishments which garner you a big fat wreath and a bloody nose. It's hard to tell whether actor Yu Oh-seong is doing a bad job or a solid one as he represents a man with little depth, not much smarts, and a boy's undeveloped philosophies. There's a lot of blank stares and looks of incomprehension. That might be the brutal truth. Ultimately, he's easy on the eyes and his tightie whities are always spotless. While the actual matches could've gone on much longer, his flashbacks are kept to a minimum. Kindly so.

November 17, 2007

The Ghost: Ring-a-ding-ding


What's the most influential horror movie ever? Psycho? Halloween? Frankenstein? In recent history, at least in Asia, the answer would definitely be The Ring. And for The Ghost, writer-director Kim Tae-kyeong trots out his own facsimile of that landmark movie's creepy dead girl. Why is the image of a silent young woman with straight, dirty black hair hanging in front of her face so unsettling? Even now, after having seen various incarnations of this demon-spawn in a half-dozen flicks, she's still got a certain undeniable power. Maybe it's the idea of a battered woman or an abused child who refuses to be beaten coming back from the dead to right wrongs. (The catch is she's got so much justifiable anger that she's a little out of control.) Woman as victim becomes woman as vengeance. Having the spirit inhabit different bodies, as Kim does here, just makes her transformation that much more universal. Like any decent fright flick, The Ghost also throws out a number of existential questions like if our memories were erased would we become someone else or who is responsible for an accidental death? I think I like amnesiacs! They're so open.

November 10, 2007

Shiri: She-bang She-bang


Shiri, Kang Je-gyu's enjoyable political thriller, has a riveting opener: With barely a word of dialogue, an extended montage of shooting, stabbing, screaming, running in the rain, and eating slop introduces us to the dehumanization undergone by a North Korean rebel military outfit. Yet the star pupil of this factional force isn't Pyongyang's answer to Sylvester Stallone; it's Kim Yunjin, the same lovely actress who made a splash stateside with her role in the cult series Lost. To call her character in this film a femme fatale strikes me as missing the point. Such an assertion just cheapens her antiauthoritarian convictions...or the effectiveness of the brainwashing. (That's your call.) But as she kill, kill, kills, she's destined to break as many hearts as she shoots because she can't shed her convictions as easily as her disguising wig. Though this flick has some slow sections before the big shoot-em-up in the stadium, it's also got some unexpected treats like a makeout scene in an aquarium and an excerpt from a Korean production of Guys and Dolls. The light military protection of a newly discovered, scent-free liquid bomb is an improbable plot point but from the looks of the resultant explosions perhaps that material was overhyped.

November 3, 2007

A Tale of Two Sisters: Lights! Camera! Inaction!


As far as symbolist family sagas involving ghostly multiple personalities go, I suppose A Tale of Two Sisters is one of the less hermetic ones. By the end of this atmospheric mystery (which is another way of saying that it's not that suspenseful), everything except for the creepy critters has pretty much been explained. Frankly, I would have preferred a bit more head scratching. I like the lizard creatures, the child crawling out of the woman's crotch, and the big bloody bag. Who cares what's in it? That's scary! But most of the time Kim Ji-woon's film has you watching anticipatory tableaus cheapened by the nagging question is this happening in the stepmom's head, the daughter's head, or the little sister's head. Why none of the characters chose to bash in the father's head may be the greatest mystery of all. Though he's somewhat peripheral to the action, his very coolness is so inappropriate that I kept hoping he'd turn out to be a modern version of Ted Bundy or Dr. Frankenstein. No such luck. Lots of nice haircuts shot so the face is somewhat obscured like in The Ring. But not nearly as riveting.

October 24, 2007

Three... Extremes: A Cut Above


It recently dawned on me that Korea is the Ireland of Asia. As major influences go, it's got China and Japan to Ireland's U.S. and England. Plus, it's got a similar North-South, politically polarized split with the Southern part being the more celebratory half. (Are Protestants the Communists of Europe?) It wasn't politics that triggered this realization however. It was art. For just as the Emerald Isle, despite its diminutive size, smaller population, weaker role in the world, troubled history, etc., can go head-to-head with either America or Britain in terms of literature (Shaw, Wilde, Joyce, Swift), Korea can do the same with its big brothers in terms of film. Take a look at the movie Three... Extremes, a trilogy of horror flicks from Hong Kong ("Dumplings"), Korea ("Cut"), and Japan ("Box"). This triptych could easily serve as an argument for Korean moviemaking supremacy. Admittedly, Fruit Chan and Takashi Mike aren't their respective countries Wong Kar-wai or Kurosawa (whereas Park Chan-wook is his country's Park Chan-wook). But even so, when it comes to working within the horror genre, neither Hong Kong nor Tokyo comes close to Seoul's succubus of a film. In comparison to Park's Shavian tale of a film-extra hell-bent on leveling the playing field for heaven, Chan's Swiftian parable about a woman willing to eat fetuses to regain youth and Mike's not-too-wild dream of a Siamese twin look plain silly. Throw in a fantastic performance from Lim Won-hie as the crazy who can dance as well as he wields an axe, and you've got the makings of thriller that's not only visually stunning but highly entertaining as well.

October 19, 2007

Memories of Murder: Postcards From the Dead


What makes Memories of Murder such an unusually gripping detective film isn't some requisite, titillating peeling of layers that ends up revealing the twisted logic of a sick-but-brilliant serial killer's mind. Instead, director Bong Joon-ho slowly draws you into the frustrated psyches of his two policemen as they find themselves increasingly frustrated in their attempts to crack the code. It's a momentum headed towards the void, not hell. The country mouse / city mouse conflict between the two investigators is initially played for chuckles but eventually the contrast in techniques (primitive vs. sophisticated) remains just that. A contrast. Bong never ends up celebrating one over the other or even equating them as yin and yang. Justice, it turns out, takes her own sweet time if she even arrives at all. I'm always psyched to see Song Kang-ho in a movie (The Host, Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance, Joint Security Area); he's somehow likable even when he's playing what should be a fairly unsympathetic cop. Here, as a self-aggrandizing doofus who must come to grips with his own inadequacies, he brings his usual love-me-even-though-I'm-stupid persona that personally I find impossible to resist.

October 12, 2007

Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance: Prime Park


Let's face it. Park Chan-wook rocks. I just saw Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance, the first part of his visually lush vengeance trilogy, and that man has such a gorgeously deranged understanding of human psychology. He's definitely got a thing for the anti-hero that leaves you wondering who to root for. The deaf-dumb child-killer who's just trying to get a kidney for his dying sister? or the cold-hearted businessman who finds his world turned upside down by a kidnapping? The narrative tying these two guys together is outlandish even as it slips inside reality. It's just this side of the possible. There could be a world where people got gypped doing black market organ donations; where grief-stricken artists buried their siblings under a pile of thoughtfully arranged river stones; where a makeshift band of terrorists exacted revenge on behalf of their ludicrous pamphleteer. What I love about Chan-wook's films is how these narrative twists are surprising and inevitable. Life can be like that, the slippery slope. You look up, everything is rushing by in a flash of bruised beauty. The world is a mercilessly violent place.

October 8, 2007

Korean Film: In Search of My Seoul


I love Korean film. Not all Korean films, mind you. Romances like The Classic are a little too sappy, and aside from The Host, most of the comedy in their movies would bore me if it were in English. But when it comes to noir, this country's cinema can compete with the best of Hollywood. (When it comes to horror, they more than hold their own, too.) Looking back over the last few years, I know it was Save the Green Planet that first excited me about Korean film. An homage to Fellini and The Wizard of Oz, Jang Jun-hwan's serial killer thriller struck me as a one-up on Tarantino, the work of an utterly original mind that made me reconsider the importance of man's survival in the universe. (Don't worry! I still think we should live.) After that, Park Chan-wook's Oldboy turned me into a bonafide fanatic. Now I'll watch anything out of Korea. I even rented the abysmal Painted Fire which won the Golden Palm at Cannes perhaps because it reiterated that old truism that art is boring. Some people say that Korea is in the midst of a Golden Age for filmmaking. I think you should listen to those people. I think it's true. This blog's sole intention is to win new converts to Korean cinema and perhaps to figure out for myself what makes Korean movies so damned good.

October 7, 2007

Documentaries About Korea

2015 Dream Concert (2015)
Across Land, Across Sea (2011)*
Aim High in Creation (2013)*
Arirang (2010)
Camp 14 (2012)*
Crossing the Line (2006)*
Dear Pyongyang (2002)*
Defector: Escape From North Korea (2012)*
The Drop Box (2015)
Fading Away (2013)
Factory Complex (2015)
I AM.: SMTOWN (2012)
I Am Sun Mu (2015)*
Intangible Asset Number 82 (2008)
The Juchee Idea (2008)*
Kim Jong-Un: The Unauthorized Biography (2015)*
Kimjongilia (2009)*
Korean Kickboxing (2008)
The Lovers & the Despot (2016)*
Making Noise in Silence (2011)
Modern Warfare: The Korean War (2003)
My Love, Don't Cross That River (2014)
National Geographic Explorer: Inside North Korea (2007)*
North Korea: A Day in the Life (2004)*
Old Partner (2008)
Planet of Snail (2011)
The Propaganda Game (2015)*
Reach for the SKY (2015)
The Red Chapel (2009)
Rise of the Miniskirt: Nora Noh (2013)
Silence Broken: Korean Comfort Women (2010)
Songs From the North (2014)*
South Korea: Success at All Costs (2016)
Spirits and Syncretism (2015)
State of Play (2013)
Tiger Spirit: The Korean Peninsular at the Crossroads (2008)*
Turn It Up to 11 (2009)
Twinsters (2015)
Two Churches in Seoul, Korea (2014)
Under the Sun (2015)*
Vista Point - SEOUL - South Korea (2009)
Wedding Through Camera Eyes (2002)
Zen Buddhism: In Search of Self (2007)

*movies about North Korea

Movies Indexed by Year

1934
Crossroads of Youth

1936
Sweet Dream

1938
Military Train

1939
Fisherman's Fire

1941
Spring in the Korean Peninsula
Volunteer

1943
Straits of Chosun

1954
The Hand of Destiny

1960
The Housemaid
Romance Papa
Stray Bullet

1961
My Mother and Her Guest
Seong Chun-hyang

1964
Deaf Sam-ryong

1967
Yongary, Monster From
the Deep


1969
A Thousand Year-Old Fox

1972
The Flower Girl*

1974
The Korean Connection

1978
Centre Forward*

1980
The Tale of Chun Hyang*

1982
Ban Gyeumryeon
A Forest Is Swaying*
Wolmi Island*

1983
Lighthouse*

1985
Pulgasari*

1986
Hong Kil Dong*
Let Us Go to Mt. Kumgang*
Order No. 027*
A Traffic Controller
on Crossroads
*

1987
A Broad Bellflower*

1988
Ask Yourself*

1989
The Favourite Young Man*
Why Has Bodhi Dharma Left
for the East


1990
From 5 p.m. to 5 a.m.*
General's Son

1991
Son of a General II

1992
The Story of a Blooming Flower
White Badge

1995
301/302
Bitter and Sweet
O Youth*

1996
Born to Kill
Crocodile
The Day a Pig Fell into the Well
Piano Man
Two Families in Haeun-dong*

1997
The Green Fish
Lament
Motel Cactus
My Look in the Distant Future*
No. 3
Repechage

1998
A Basketball Family Team*
Christmas in August
The Power of Kangwon Province
The Quiet Family
The Soul Guardians
Whispering Corridors

1999
Attack the Gas Station
Dance, Dance
A Great Chinese Restaurant
Happy End
Judgement
Lies
Memento Mori
Nowhere to Hide
Peppermint Candy
Phantom: The Submarine
The Ring Virus
Shiri
Tell Me Something
White Valentine

2000
The Anarchists
Barking Dogs Never Bite
Chunhyang
Ditto
Il Mare
The Isle
JSA Joint Security Area
Just Do It!
Kilimanjaro
Killing Machine
Libera Me
Nightmare
Real Fiction
Terror Taxi
Vanishing Twin

2001
Address Unknown
Bad Guy
Dream of a Warrior
Friend
Flower Island
Guns & Talks
Hera Purple: Devil
Goddess

Hi! Dharma!
The Humanist
Musa: The Warriors
My Boss, My Hero
My Sassy Girl
Paradise Villa
Running 7 Dogs
Sorum
Take Care of My Cat
This Is Law
Volcano High

2002
4 Toes
2009 Lost Memories
Addicted
A.F.R.I.K.A.
Champion
The Coast Guard
Conduct Zero
Desire
H
Jail Breakers
Jungle Juice
Lovers' Concerto
Marriage Is a Crazy
Thing

Marrying the Mafia
My Beautiful Days
My Beautiful Girl, Mari
No Blood, No Tears
Oasis
Over the Rainbow
Phone
Popee
Public Enemy
Saulabi
Saving My Hubby
Sex Is Zero
Steal It If You Can
Sympathy for Mr.
Vengeance

Three Extremes 2
Too Young to Die
Unborn but Forgotten
The Way Home
Wedding Through Camera Eyes
Yesterday
YMCA Baseball Team

2003
Acacia
Doggy Poo
Garden of Heaven
A Good Lawyer's Wife
Memories of Murder
Mutt Boy
My Tutor Friend
Natural City
Oldboy
Please Teach Me English
Romantic Warriors
Run 2 U
Save the Green Planet
The Scarlet Letter
A Smile
Spring Bears Love
Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter...
and Spring

Sweet Sex and Love
A Tale of Two Sisters
Tube
The Uninvited
Untold Scandal
Wishing Stairs

2004
100 Days With Mr. Arrogant
3-Iron
Arahan: Urban Martial Arts Action
The Brotherhood of War
The Doll Master
Face
Fighter in the Wind
The Ghost
The Hypnotized
Love So Divine
My Little Bride
R-Point
S Diary
Samaritan Girl
Spider Forest
The Spirit of Jeet Kune Do
Spygirl
Three... Extremes
To Catch a Virgin Ghost
Two Guys
When I Turned Nine
Windstruck
Witchboard
Woman Is the Future
of Man


2005
Another Public Enemy
Anatarctic Journal
A Bittersweet Life
Blood Rain
Blossom Again
The Bow
Cello
Crying Fist
Daddy Long Legs
Geochilmaru
Green Chair
Innocent Steps
Jenny, Juno
The King and the Clown
Lady Vengeance
The Legend of the
Shadowless Sword

Marathon
Marrying the Mafia II
Murder, Take One
The President's Last Bang
Princess Aurora
The Red Shoes
Redeye
Sad Movie
She's on Duty
Typhoon
Voice (2005)
Wet Dreams 2
The Wig
Wolf Daddy
You Are My Sunshine

2006
200 Pounds of Beauty
Aachi & Ssipak
Arang
Bewitching Attraction
A Bloody Aria
Bloody Reunion
Bloody Tie
Boys of Tomorrow
Cinderella
The City of Violence
The Curse of February 29th
Daisy
Dark Forest of Death
Dasepo Naughty Girls
A Dirty Carnival
Forbidden Quest
Holy Daddy
The Host
I'm a Cyborg But That's Okay
In Between Days
Les Formidables
Like a Virgin
Lump of Sugar
Marrying the Mafia III
Monopoly
My Bloody Roommates
My Friend and His Wife
No Mercy for the Rude
No Regret
The Old Garden
Puzzle
Pyongyang Nalpharam*
The Restless
Righteous Ties
Running Wild
Seducing Mr. Perfect
See You After School
Tazza: The High Rollers
Time
Woman on the Beach
The World of Silence

2007
Attack on the Pin-up Boys
Black House
Breath
The Butcher
Dragon Wars: D-War
Epitaph
The Evil Twin
Going by the Book
Hansel & Gretel
Le Grand Chef
The Happy Life
M
Mapado 2: Back to the Island
Meet Mr. Daddy
Muoi: The Legend of the Portrait
My Father
My Friend Bernard
My Tutor Friend 2
Paradise Murdered
The Perfect Couple
Punch Lady
Rainbow Eyes
The Schoolgirl's Diary*
Secret Sunshine
Seven Days
Sex Is Zero 2
Shadows in the Palace
The Show Must Go On
Soo
Temptation of Eve: A Good Wife
Texture of Skin
Voices
Wide Awake
With the Girl of Black Soil
Zen Buddhism: In Search of Self

2008
24 Hours to Die
Antique Bakery
Baby and Me
Beastie Boys
The Chaser
Daytime Drinking
Death Bell
The Divine Weapon
Do You See Seoul?
Eye for an Eye
A Frozen Flower
Girl Scout
The Good, the Bad, the Weird
Hello, Schoolgirl
The Juchee Idea*
The Kites Flying in the Sky*
Korean Kickboxing
Land of Scarecrows
Loner
Lovers of 6 Years
Make Yourself at Home
My Dear Enemy
My Mighty Princess
Night and Day
Old Partner
Once Upon a Time in Seoul
Open City
The Pit and the Pendulum
The Pot
Rough Cut
Spare
Speedy Scandal
A Tale of Legendary Libido
Tiger Spirit
Treeless Mountain
Viva! Love

2009
Actresses
After the Banquet
Animal Town
Asian Queer Shorts
Be My Guest
Be With Me
A Blood Pledge
A Brand New Life
Cadaver
Cafe Seoul
The Case of Itaewon Homicide
Chawz
The Executioner
Five Senses of Eros
A Good Rain Knows
Handphone
Insadong Scandal
Into the White Night
Jeon Woochi: Taoist
Wizard

Lifting King Kong
Like You Know It All
A Little Pond
Living Death
Loveholic
Marine Boy
May Story
Missing
Missing Person
Mother
My Girlfriend Is an Agent
My Heart Beats
Paju
Postman to Heaven
The Red Chapel*
Relation of Face, Mind and Love
The Righteous Thief
Running Turtle
Searching for the Elephant
The Story of Mr. Sorry
Thirst
Tidal Wave
Turn It Up to 11
Visitors
Yoga Hakwon

2010
Ashamed
Attack the Gas Station! 2
A Barefoot Dream
Bedevilled
A Better Tomorrow
Blades of Blood
Bloody Innocent
Cyrano Agency
Death Bell 2:
Bloody Camp

Enemy at the Dead End
Finding Mr. Destiny
Grand Prix
Hahaha
Hearty Paws 2
The Housemaid
The Indecent Family
IRIS: The Movie
The Man From Nowhere
Midnight FM
Miss Staff Sergeant
My Dear Desperado
Oki's Movie
The Outlaw
Parallel Life
Poetry
The Quiz Show Scandal
The Recipe
Runaway From Home
Secret Love
The Secret Reunion
Silence Broken: Korean Comfort
Women

Twilight Gangsters
The Unjust
Venus in Furs
The Yellow Sea

2011
Across Land, Across Sea *
Arirang
Blind
Bloody Fight in Iron-Rock Valley
The Cat
Couples
The Day He Arrives
Flower in Snow*
The Front Line
Ghost
Glove
Hanji
Head
I Saw the Devil
Invasion of Alien Bikini
The Kick
Leafie
Little Black Dress
Making Noise in Silence
Mr. Idol
My Way
Night Fishing
On the Green Carpet*
Penny Pinchers
Planet of Snail
Punch
Quick
Scars
Shotgun Love
The Showdown
Silenced
Song of Retrospection*
Sorry, Thanks
Stateless Things
Sunny
Unbowed
War of the Arrows
White: The Melody of the Curse

2012
Azooma
The Beat Goes On
The Berlin File
Camp 14
A Company Man
The Concubine
Confession of Murder
Dino King
Don't Cry, Mommy
Doomsday Book
E.D. 571
Eungyo
Fatal
Gabi: Russian Coffee
The Grand Heist
Helpless
House With a Nice View
Howling
I AM.: SMTOWN
In Another Country
Let Me Out
Love 911
Masquerade
Melo
Nameless Gangster
National Security
Natural Burials
The Other Side of the Mountain*
Pieta
Role Play
The Scent
The Taste of Money
The Thieves
The Tower
Traffickers
Two Weddings and a Funeral
White Night


2013
Aim High in Creation*
The Attorney
Blood and Ties
Born to Sing
Commitment
Fading Away
Fists of Legend
Flu
Friend 2: The Legacy
Hide and Seek
Hope
Hwayi: A Monster Boy
Love Lessons
Miracle in Cell No. 7
Moebius
New World
Queen of the Night
Red Family
Rise of the Miniskirt: Nora Noh
Samaritan
Snowpiercer
State of Play
Stoker
Where Are to Go

2014
The Abductress
The Admiral: Roaring
Currents

Alive
Compassion
The Carnivores
The Divine Move
Entangled
For the Emperor
Gifted
A Hard Day
Kundo: Age of the
Rampant

Man on High Heels
Manhole
Milkshake
Monster
My Love, Don't Cross That River
Pirates
Play Girl
Red Carpet
Revivre
The Royal Tailor
Songs from the North*
The Target
Tazza: The Hidden Card
No Tears for the Dead
A Touch of Unseen
Two Churches in Seoul, Korea
Venus Talk

2015
2015 Dream Concert
Assassination
The Beauty Inside
The Black Hand
Kim Jong-Un: The Unauthorized
Biography
*
The Chronicles of Evil
Dennis Rodman's Big Bang
in PyongYang
*
The Drop Box
The Exclusive
Factory Complex
I Am Sun Mu*
The Loyalist
Madonna
Miss Granny
Nineteen
Northern Limit Line
The Propaganda Game*
Reach for the SKY
Right Now, Wrong Then
Seoul Station
The Silenced
The Tiger
Twinsters
Under the Sun
Veteran
Wonderful Nightmare

2016
The Age of Shadows
The Handmaiden
Last Day on Earth
The Lovers & the Despot*
Pandora
Sea Fog
South Korea: Success at All Costs
Train to Busan
Tunnel
The Wailing

2017
Gook
Lucid Dream
Okja
The Villainess

* indicates North Korean movie

October 6, 2007

Movies Indexed by Titles

#
3-Iron (2004)
4 Toes (2002)
24 Hours to Die (2008)
100 Days With
Mr. Arrogant
(2004)
200 Pounds of Beauty (2006)
301/302 (1995)
2009 Lost Memories (2002)
2015 Dream Concert (2015)

A
Aachi & Ssipak (2006)
The Abductress (2014)
Acacia (2003)
Across Land, Across Sea (2011)*
Actresses (2009)
Addicted (2002)
Aim High in Creation (2013)*
Address Unknown (2001)
The Admiral: Roaring
Currents
(2014)
A.F.R.I.K.A. (2002)
After the Banquet (2009)
The Age of Shadows (2016)
Alive (2014)
The Anarchists (2000)
Animal Town (2009)
Another Public Enemy (2005)
Anatarctic Journal (2005)
Antique Bakery (2008)
Arahan: Urban Martial Arts
Action
(2004)
Arang (2006)
Arirang (2011)
Ashamed (2010)
Asian Queer Shorts (2009)
Ask Yourself (1988)*
Assassination (2015)
Attack on the Pin-up
Boys
(2007)
Attack the Gas Station (1999)
Attack the Gas Station! 2 (2010)
The Attorney (2103)
Azooma (2012)

B
Baby and Me (2008)
Bad Guy (2001)
Ban Gyeumryeon (1982)
A Barefoot Dream (2010)
Barking Dogs Never Bite (2000)
A Basketball family Team (1998)*
Be My Guest (2009)
Be With Me (2009)
Beastie Boys (2008)
The Beat Goes On (2012)
The Beauty Inside (2015)
Bedevilled (2010)
The Berlin File (2012)
A Better Tomorrow (2010)
Bewitching Attraction (2006)
Bitter and Sweet (1995)
A Bittersweet Life (2005)
The Black Hand (2015)
Black House (2007)
Blades of Blood (2010)
Blind (2011)
Blood and Ties (2013)
A Blood Pledge (2009)
Blood Rain (2005)
A Bloody Aria (2006)
Bloody Fight in Iron-Rock
Valley
(2011)
Bloody Innocent (2010)
Bloody Reunion (2006)
Bloody Tie (2006)
Blossom Again (2005)
Blue (2003)
Born to Kill (1996)
Born to Sing (2013)
The Bow (2005)
Boys of Tomorrow (2006)
A Brand New Life (2009)
A Broad Bellflower (1987)*
Breath (2007)
The Brotherhood of War (2004)
The Butcher (2007)

C
Cadaver (2009)
Cafe Seoul (2009)
Camp 14 (2012)
The Carnivores (2014)
The Case of Itaewon
Homicide
(2009)
The Cat (2011)
Cello (2005)
Centre Forward (1978)*
Champion (2002)
The Chaser (2008)
Chawz (2009)
Christmas in August (1998)
The Chronicles of Evil (2015)
Chunhyang (2000)
Cinderella (2006)
The City of Violence (2006)
The Coast Guard (2002)
Commitment (2013)
Compassion (2014)
A Company Man (2012)
The Concubine (2012)
Conduct Zero (2002)
Confession of Murder (2012)
Couples (2011)
Crocodile (1996)
Crossroads of Youth (1934)
Crying Fist (2005)
The Curse of
February 29th
(2006)
Cyrano Agency (2010)

D
Daddy Long Legs (2005)
Daisy (2006)
Dance, Dance (1999)
Dark Forest of Death (2006)
Dasepo Naughty Girls (2006)
The Day a Pig Fell Into
the Well
(1996)
The Day He Arrives (2011)
Daytime Drinking (2008)
Deaf Sam-ryong (1964)
Death Bell (2008)
Death Bell 2:
Bloody Camp
(2010)
Dennis Rodman's Big Bang
in PyongYang
(2015)
Desire (2002)
Dino King (2012)
A Dirty Carnival (2006)
Ditto (2000)
The Divine Move (2014)
The Divine Weapon (2008)
Do You See Seoul? (2008)
Doggy Poo (2003)
The Doll Master (2004)
Don't Cry, Mommy (2012)
Doomsday Book (2012)
Dragon Wars: D-War (2007)
Dream of a Warrior (2001)
The Drop Box (2015)

E
E.D. 571 (2012)
Enemy at the Dead End (2010)
Entangled (2014)
Epitaph (2007)
Eungyo (2012)
The Evil Twin (2007)
The Exclusive (2105)
The Executioner (2009)
Eye for an Eye (2008)

F
Face (2004)
Factory Complex (2015)
Fading Away (2013)
Fatal (2012)
The Favourite Young Man (1989)*
Fighter in the Wind (2004)
Finding Mr. Destiny (2010)
Fisherman's Fire (1939)
Fists of Legend (2013)
Five Senses of Eros (2009)
The Flower Girl (1972)*
Flower in Snow (2011)*
Flower Island (2001)
Flu (2013)
For the Emperor (2014)
Forbidden Quest (2006)
A Forest Is Swaying (1982)*
Friend (2001)
Friend 2: The Legacy (2013)
From 5 p.m. to 5 a.m. (1990)*
The Front Line (2011)
A Frozen Flower (2008)

G
Gabi: Russian Coffee (2012)
Garden of Heaven (2003)
General's Son (1990)
Geochilmaru (2005)
Ghost (2011)
The Ghost (2004)
Gifted (2014)
Girl Scout (2008)
Glove (2011)
Going by the Book (2007)
A Good Lawyer's Wife (2003)
A Good Rain Knows (2009)
The Good, the Bad,
the Weird
(2008)
Gook (2017)
The Grand Heist (2012)
Grand Prix (2010)
A Great Chinese Restaurant (1999)
Green Chair (2005)
The Green Fish (1997)
Guns & Talks (2001)

H
H (2002)
Hahaha (2010)
The Hand of Destiny (1954)
The Handmaiden (2016)
Handphone (2009)
Hanji (2011)
Hansel & Gretel (2007)
Happy End (1999)
The Happy Life (2007)
A Hard Day (2014)
Head (2011)
Hearty Paws 2 (2010)
Hello, Schoolgirl (2008)
Helpless (2012)
Hera Purple: Devil
Goddess
(2001)
Hi! Dharma! (2001)
Hide and Seek (2013)
Holy Daddy (2006)
Hong Kil Dong (1986)*
Hope (2013)
The Host (2006)
House With a Nice View (2012)
The Housemaid (1960)
The Housemaid (2010)
Howling (2012)
The Humanist (2001)
Hwayi: A Monster Boy (2013)
The Hypnotized (2004)

I
I AM.: SMTOWN (2012)
I Am Sun Mu (2015)*
I Saw the Devil (2011)
Il Mare (2000)
I'm a Cyborg But
That's Okay
(2006)
In Another Country (2012)
In Between Days (2006)
The Indecent Family (2010)
Innocent Steps (2005)
Insadong Scandal (2009)
Into the White Night (2009)
Invasion of Alien Bikini (2011)
IRIS: The Movie (2010)
The Isle (2000)

J
Jail Breakers (2002)
Jenny, Juno (2005)
Jeon Woochi: Taoist
Wizard
(2009)
JSA Joint Security Area (2000)
The Juchee Idea (2008)*
Judgement (1999)
Jungle Juice (2002)
Just Do It! (2000)

K
The Kick (2011)
Kilimanjaro (2000)
Killing Machine (2000)
Kim Jong-Un: The Unauthorized
Biography
(2015)*
The King and the Clown (2005)
The Kites Flying in the Sky (2008)*
The Korean Connection (1974)
Korean Kickboxing (2008)
Kundo: Age of the
Rampant
(2014)

L
Lady Vengeance (2005)
Lament (1997)
Land of Scarecrows (2008)
Last Day on Earth (2016)
Le Grand Chef (2007)
Leafie (2011)
The Legend of the
Shadowless Sword
(2005)
Les Formidables (2006)
Let Me Out (2012)
Let Us Go to Mt. Kumgang (1986)*
Libera Me (2000)
Lies (1999)
Lifting King Kong (2009)
Lighthouse (1983)*
Like a Virgin (2006)
Like You Know It All (2009)
Little Black Dress (2011)
A Little Pond (2009)
Living Death (2009)
Loner (2008)
Love 911 (2012)
Love Lessons (2013)
Love So Divine (2004)
Loveholic (2009)
The Lovers & the Despot (2016)*
Lovers of 6 Years (2008)
Lovers' Concerto (2002)
The Loyalist (2015)
Lucid Dream (2017)
Lump of Sugar (2006)

M
M (2007)
Madonna (2015)
Make Yourself at Home (2008)
Making Noise in Silence (2011)
The Man From Nowhere (2010)
Man on High Heels (2014)
Manhole (2014)
Mapado 2: Back to the
Island
(2007)
Marathon (2005)
Marine Boy (2009)
Marriage Is a Crazy Thing (2002)
Marrying the Mafia (2002)
Marrying the Mafia II (2005)
Marrying the Mafia III (2006)
Masquerade (2012)
May Story (2009)
Meet Mr. Daddy (2007)
Melo (2012)
Memento Mori (1999)
Memories of Murder (2003)
Midnight FM (2010)
Military Train (1938)
Milkshake (2014)
Miracle in Cell No. 7 (2013)
Miss Granny (2015)
Miss Staff Sergeant (2010)
Missing Person (2009)
Missing (2009)
Moebius (2013)
Monopoly (2006)
Monster (2014)
Motel Cactus (1997)
Mother (2009)
Mr. Idol (2011)
Muoi: The Legend of
the Portrait
(2007)
Murder, Take One (2005)
Musa: The Warriors (2001)
Mutt Boy (2003)
My Beautiful Days (2002)
My Beautiful Girl, Mari (2002)
My Bloody Roommates (2006)
My Boss, My Hero (2001)
My Dear Desperado (2010)
My Dear Enemy (2008)
My Father (2007)
My Friend and His Wife (2006)
My Friend Bernard (2007)
My Girlfriend Is an Agent (2009)
My Heart Beats (2009)
My Little Bride (2004)
My Look in the Distant
Future
(1997)*
My Love, Don't Cross
That River
(2014)
My Mighty Princess (2008)
My Mother and
Her Guest
(1961)
My Sassy Girl (2001)
My Tutor Friend (2003)
My Tutor Friend 2 (2007)
My Way (2011)

N
Nameless Gangster (2012)
National Security (2012)
Natural Burials (2012)
Natural City (2003)
New World (2013)
Night and Day (2008)
Night Fishing (2011)
Nightmare (2000)
Nineteen (2015)
No. 3 (1997)
No Blood, No Tears (2002)
No Mercy for the Rude (2006)
No Regret (2006)
No Tears for the Dead (2014)
Northern Limit Line (2015)
Nowhere to Hide (1999)

O
O Youth (1995)*
Oasis (2002)
Oki's Movie (2010)
Okja (2017)
The Old Garden (2006)
Old Partner (2008)
Oldboy (2003)
On the Green Carpet (2011)*
Once Upon a Time in
Seoul
(2008)
Open City (2008)
Order No. 027 (1986)*
The Other Side of
the Mountain
(2012)*
The Outlaw (2010)
Over the Rainbow (2002)

P
Paju (2009)
Pandora (2016)
Paradise Murdered (2007)
Paradise Villa (2001)
Parallel Life (2010)
Penny Pinchers (2011)
Peppermint Candy (1999)
The Perfect Couple (2007)
Phantom: The Submarine (1999)
Phone (2002)
Piano Man (1996)
Pieta (2012)
Pirates (2014)
The Pit and the Pendulum (2008)
Planet of Snail (2011)
Play Girl (2014)
Please Teach Me English (2003)
Poetry (2010)
Popee (2002)
Postman to Heaven (2009)
The Pot (2008)
The Power of Kangwon
Province
(1998)
The President's Last Bang (2005)
Princess Aurora (2005)
The Propaganda Game (2015)*
Public Enemy (2002)
Pulgasari (1985)*
Punch (2011)
Punch Lady (2007)
Puzzle (2006)
Pyongyang Nalpharam (2006)*

Q
Queen of the Night (2013)
Quick (2011)
The Quiet Family (1998)
The Quiz Show
Scandal
(2010)

R
Rainbow Eyes (2007)
Reach for the SKY (2015)
Real Fiction (2000)
The Recipe (2010)
Red Carpet (2014)
The Red Chapel (2009)*
Red Family (2013)
The Red Shoes (2005)
Redeye (2005)
Relation of Face, Mind
and Love
(2009)
Repechage (1997)
The Restless (2006)
Revivre (2014)
Right Now, Wrong Then (2015)
The Righteous Thief (2009)
Righteous Ties (2006)
The Ring Virus (1999)
Rise of the Miniskirt:
Nora Noh
(2013)
Role Play (2012)
Romance Papa (1960)
Romantic Warriors (2003)
Rough Cut (2008)
The Royal Tailor (2014)
R-Point (2004)
Run 2 U (2003)
Runaway From Home (2010)
Running 7 Dogs (2001)
Running Turtle (2009)
Running Wild (2006)

S
S Diary (2004)
Sad Movie (2005)
Samaritan (2013)
Samaritan Girl (2004)
Saulabi (2002)
Save the Green Planet (2003)
Saving My Hubby (2002)
The Scarlet Letter (2003)
Scars (2011)
The Scent (2012)
The Schoolgirl's Diary (2007)*
Sea Fog (2016)
Searching for the
Elephant
(2009)
Secret Love (2010)
The Secret Reunion (2010)
Secret Sunshine (2007)
Seducing Mr. Perfect (2006)
See You After School (2006)
Seong Chun-hyang (1961)
Seoul Station (2016)
Seven Days (2007)
Sex Is Zero (2002)
Sex Is Zero 2 (2007)
Shadows in the Palace (2007)
She's on Duty (2005)
Shiri (1999)
Shotgun Love (2011)
The Show Must Go On (2007)
The Showdown (2011)
Silence Broken: Korean Comfort
Women
(2010)
Silenced (2011)
The Silenced (2015)
A Smile (2003)
Snowpiercer (2013)
Son of a General II (1991)
Song of Retrospection (2011)*
Songs from the North (2014)*
Soo (2007)
Sorry, Thanks (2011)
Sorum (2001)
The Soul Guardians (1998)
South Korea: Success
at All Costs (2016)

Spare (2008)
Speedy Scandal (2008)
Spider Forest (2004)
The Spirit of Jeet Kune Do (2004)
Spring Bears Love (2003)
Spring in the Korean
Peninsula
(1941)
Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter...
and Spring
(2003)
Spygirl (2004)
State of Play (2013)
Stateless Things (2011)
Steal It If You Can (2002)
Stoker (2013)
The Story of a Blooming
Flower
(1992)
The Story of Mr. Sorry (2009)
Straits of Chosun (1943)
Stray Bullet (1960)
Sunny (2011)
Sweet Dream (1936)
Sweet Sex and Love (2003)
Sympathy for Mr.
Vengeance
(2002)

T
Take Care of My Cat (2001)
The Tale of Chun Hyang (1980)*
A Tale of Legendary
Libido
(2008)
A Tale of Two Sisters (2003)
The Target (2014)
The Taste of Money (2012)
Tazza: The Hidden Card (2014)
Tazza: The High Rollers (2006)
Tell Me Something (1999)
Temptation of Eve:
A Good Wife
(2007)
Terror Taxi (2000)
Texture of Skin (2007)
The Thieves (2012)
Thirst (2009)
This Is Law (2001)
A Thousand Year-Old Fox (1969)
Three Extremes 2 (2002)
Three... Extremes (2004)
Tidal Wave (2009)
The Tiger (2015)
Tiger Spirit (2008)
Time (2006)
To Catch a Virgin Ghost (2004)
Too Young to Die (2002)
A Touch of Unseen (2014)
The Tower (2012)
A Traffic Controller on
Crossroads
(1986)*
Train to Busan (2016)
Traffickers (2012)
Treeless Mountain (2008)
Tube (2003)
Tunnel (2016)
Turn It Up to 11 (2009)
Twilight Gangsters (2010)
Twinsters (2015)
Two Churches in Seoul,
Korea
(2014)
Two Families in Haeun-dong (1996)*
Two Guys (2004)
Two Weddings and a
Funeral
(2012)
Typhoon (2005)

U
Unborn but Forgotten (2002)
Unbowed (2011)
Under the Sun (2015)
The Uninvited (2003)
The Unjust (2010)
Untold Scandal (2003)

V
Vanishing Twin (2000)
Venus in Furs (2010)
Venus Talk (2014)
Veteran (2015)
The Villainess (2017)
Visitors (2009)
Viva! Love (2008)
Voice (2005)
Voices (2007)
Volcano High (2001)
Volunteer (1941)

W
The Wailing (2016)
War of the Arrows (2011)
The Way Home (2002)
Wedding Through Camera
Eyes
(2002)
Wet Dreams 2 (2005)
When I Turned Nine (2004)
Where Are to Go (2013)
Whispering Corridors (1998)
White: The Melody of
the Curse
(2011)
White Badge (1992)
White Night (2012)
White Valentine (1999)
Why Has Bodhi Dharma
Left for the East
(1989)
Wide Awake (2007)
The Wig (2005)
Windstruck (2004)
Wishing Stairs (2003)
Witchboard (2004)
With the Girl of Black Soil (2007)
Wolf Daddy (2005)
Wolmi Island (1982)*
Woman Is the Future
of Man
(2004)
Woman on the Beach (2006)
Wonderful Nightmare (2015)
The World of Silence (2006)

Y
The Yellow Sea (2010)
Yesterday (2002)
YMCA Baseball Team (2002)
Yoga Hakwon (2009)
Yongary, Monster From
the Deep
(1967)
You Are My Sunshine (2005)

Z
Zen Buddhism: In Search
of Self
(2007)

* indicates North Korean movie