[Guest Film Review] "Taegukgi" 2016/06/04,
The fourth-in-a-row blockbuster regarding the relations between North and South Korea (after "Shiri", "JSA - Joint Security Area" and "Silmido"), broke the records of both budget, with $12,8 millions, and admissions, with 11.74 million spectators in the country's cinemas, while its earnings bordered on $70 million. Furthermore, it was a success in Japan earning $9,7 million, and it was also released in the United Stated, earning $1,1 million. Testament to the scale of the production are the years of research spent to ensure historic validity, the huge sets, and the number of supernumeraries used, who exceeded 25,000, in order to achieve absolute realism in the war scenes,...More
[HanCinema's Hall of Fame Review] "Snowpiercer": Dreaming of a Wicked Wonderland 2014/04/05, In the Spotlight this Week: Bong Joon-ho's "Snowpiercer"...
2013 was a frantic and fascinating year for Korean cinema. In addition to the recording-breaking figures the domestic box office reported, it was a year that saw three of Korea's top directing talents venture into English-language films. First it was Kim Jee-woon that enticed Arnold Schwarzenegger to get back to bullets in "The Last Stand", Park Chan-wook took Wentworth Miller's sizzling debut script and summoned "Stoker", and then Bong Joon-ho adapted the French graphic novel "Le Transperceneige" and ran with it all the way to the bank. The results were three highly polished and enticing features that displayed the cinematic craftsmanship of three of Korea's most progressive and celebrated moviemakers. Within this talented trio, however, it was Bong Joon-ho's futuristic extravaganza "Snowpiercer" that gathered the most momentum, attracting more than 9.3 million viewers to its epically fantastical imagining of a not-so-distance dystopia,...More
[HanCinema's Hall of Fame] Bong Joon-ho's "Mother - 2009" 2013/10/26, In the Spotlight this Week:"Mother - 2009" by Bong Joon-ho
The mother-image invokes particularly powerful emotions within us all; they are the protecting and nurturing figures that we imagine to be compassionately eternal and lovingly steadfast. In "Mother - 2009" that ideal is given a cruel existence, a scratched filmind born from the collision of untouchable family values and modern Korea's fumbling with justice and reliability. How would a widowed mother react if her only son (of 28 years) were accused of cold-blooded murder? An interesting enough thought experiment, but all-star director Bong Joon-ho challenges us further by thinking the son as mentally handicapped, another cruel test of faith for his mother-image. 'Unconditional love' seems an appropriate tool from which to start from here, it's the romantic weapon that tells us all that a mother's love is always forthcoming - like the rise and fall of the sun. "Mother - 2009" is the tragic story of that unconditional love gone awry, lost somewhere in the vast and unforgiving social space that Bong places between mother and son, between their love and shared madness,...More
[HanCinema's Box Office Review] 2013.07.26 ~ 2013.07.28 2013/07/29,
Despite the release of DreamWorks Animation's "Turbo" and the latest comic book film "The Wolverine", it was "Red 2" that managed to remain Korea's film of choice. Director Dean Parisot's "Red 2" claimed 666,048 admissions (25.9%) in its second weekend out, holding off a host of challengers to round out the month of July in good condition. In addition to these two Hollywood features getting stuck in, this week will also see two mammoth Korean films go head-to-head for the summer crowds and crown.
Bong Joon-ho's "Snowpiercer" and Kim Byeong-woo's "The Terror Live" are both officially released on August 1st, with the latter having already scored a sneaky 122,762 (4.9%) admissions. "The Terror Live" stars the popular Korean actor Ha Jung-woo ("The Berlin File", "Nameless Gangster", "The Client") as a T.V. anchor that has to get back into the game when a bomb-blasting terrorist threatens Korea's capital city,...More
[HanCinema's Film News] New Korean Films Inbound... 2013/07/27, K-Films Coming Soon:
★★★★ "The Terror Live" (aka "90 Minutes of Terror"): A former T.V. anchorman gets an anonymous call from a bomb-blasting terrorist and has to get back in front of the camera to cover the story. (08/01)
★★★★★ "Snowpiercer": In a post-apocalyptic future mankind is forced to live on a constantly moving train that circles the Earth at great speeds. Within the train, social order is enforced through a harsh tyrannical system that is challenged by an organised revolution.(08/01),...More
[HanCinema's Film Talk] SNOWPIERCER @ 24fps 2013/06/29, Bong Joon-ho's futuristic action epic "Snowpiercer" recently released a spectacular trailer to keep the saliva thick and wanting before the film's Korean release on August 1st. Here I'm going to take you through three sequences from that amazing trailer, and share some thoughts on what to expect from one of the most antcipated films of the year.
In 2004, Bong reportedly came across the French comic book Le Transperceneige and read the entire series right there in the store. He shared his enthusiasm with fellow Korean director Park Chan-wook ("Old Boy", "Stoker") whose production company Moho Films secured the rights to it the following year. The film is a transnational exhibition that boasts a number of international talents in front of and behind the camera. Korean cinematographer Hong Kyeong-pyo ("Taegukgi", "Mother - 2009", "The Good, the Bad, the Weird") and all-star Korean actor Song Kang-ho ("The Host", "Memories of Murder", "Secret Sunshine") are among an orchestra of creative personalities who brought their impressive cinematic talents into the mix,...More
Four leading Korean directors working on overseas projects 2011/11/21, Source, By JU Sung Chul
With leading Korean directors Park Chan-wook, Bong Joon-ho, Kim Jee-woon and Ryoo Seung-wan all working on overseas productions, journalist JU Sung Chul examines the details of their projects for "Korean Cinema Today"
The year 2012 looks like it will see an unprecedented rush of Korean directors working onforeign projects. This phenomenon seems similar to the situation back in the late 1990s when Hong Kong directors John WOO, Ringo LAM, TSUI Hark, Kirk WONG and Ronny YU all directed films produced in Hollywood.What's different is that whereas they were inclined to make films only in Hong Kong's specialty genre - the action film, their Korean counterparts are expected to make films that will retains the directors' varyingstyles and sensibilities. Park Chan-wook's "Stoker" and Kim Jee-woon's "The Last Stand" are produced by Hollywood-based companies while Bong Joon-ho's "Snowpiercer" and Ryoo Seung-wan's "In Berlin" (working title) are to be co-productions,...More
Lights! iPhone! Action! 2010/09/28, Source,
Cinematographer Hong Kyeong-pyo, left, films actors Kim Yoon-seo, center, and Kim Jae-wook using an iPhone4 in a Seoul studio, Sunday./ Courtesy of iPhone 4 Film Festival
iPhone 4 Film fest to showcase works by top directors
By Lee Hyo-won
In 2008, director Spike Lee teamed up with Nokia to produce a film comprised of videos created using cellphones. "Within five years, new movies will be made with devices like these", he predicted,...More
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