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Korea's Prolific Production of Gay Themed Cinema Continues

2009/10/09 | 11055 views |  | Permalink | Source

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A soon to be released feature is about to join the ranks of Korea's burgeoning cannon of queer cinema. "Hello My Love", Kim Aaron's debut feature, comes at an end of a decade that has seen a relative explosion of new queer cinema. In this short space of time highlighted by such films as "Bungee jumping of their own" (2001), "The King and the Clown" (the number one box office hit of 2005) and even "No Regret" (2006) the first gay film directed by and out gay director, Korean audiences have embraced this relatively taboo topics at least on a cinematic level.

"Hello My Love", like a lot of other Korean gay themed films presents the thorny issue of homosexuality through the well worn romantic comedy genre with a generous amount of melodrama and acceptable, comic stereotypical characters. This typical trendy take on the familiar threesome happens when popular radio host Ho-jeong welcomes back her childhood sweet heart, Won-jae from a two year trip in France. In tow however, is Won-jae's 'friend Dong-wha who is in partnership with Won-jae to start up a wine restaurant inspired by the cultured delights of France. The two, both professionally and personally, never seem to leave each other. Ho-jeong's world turns upside down however, when she spots the two getting intimate but even then that won't stop her as she tries to 'change' Won-jae via a one month dating period.

Like "The King and the Clown" and the sexually charged "A Frozen Flower" (2008), "Hello My Love" looks set to take advantage of a generation who see such issues as part of a more general trend setting sexual wave rather than an investigation of sexual minorities in Korea. The film which showed at this year's Jeonju International Film Festival opens in October 8.

David Oxenbridge (KOFIC)

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