After transferring to a new school Gong-joo becomes friends with Eun-hee, who convinces her to join an acappella club. When news gets out of Gong-joo’s new hobby, a group of former classmates parents cause a stir, unveiling Gong-joo’s troubled past.
[HanCinema's Film Review] "My Little Baby, Jaya" 2017/04/29
The exploitation film is lurid for the sake of being lurid, enticing viewers with the promise that twisted depraved people will meet twisted depraved ends in the name of morose justice. The social awareness film, by contrast, seeks to make some sort of serious commentary about horrible unseen problems in daily life. "My Little Baby, Jaya" tries to be both of these things, with mixed success,...More
[HanCinema's Digest] Cinema Snippets 2015/04/11
Taste of Cinema reveals 25 Korean films you might have overlooked, Fabien introduces this week's new releases for Modern Korean Cinema, China-Korea relations continue to flourish with regard to cinema, and Hangul Celluloid reviews the captivating drama "Han Hong-ju",...More
New Film Expected to Set Indie Box-Office Record 2015/03/18, Source
A recently released indie film appears likely to set a new box-office record after a strong initial response from audiences. "Socialphobia" was seen by about 112,000 moviegoers in its first three days on the screen, reaching the 100,000 mark faster than any other indie film released here,...More
[HanCinema's Image Gallery] "Han Gong-ju" @ 24fps 2015/02/21 Lee Su-jin's "Han Gong-ju" @ 24fps...
There are so many films flashing furiously past our eyes nowadays that it's hard to remember some of the devilish details, moments, and ideas from our favourite features. Add to that all the music videos, T.V. series, news broadcasts, digital advertisements, YouTube playlists and gaming, and it might well start to feel like there's an insurmountable backlog of compelling content, and you'd be right (sooner or later). Our lifetime is slowly being replaced by digital dream streams that if we were to watch all the classics, the critically acclaimed, personal recommendations and cultural must-sees, our lives would no longer have a convincing anchor in reality, and screen-time would be our only time,...More
[HanCinema's Film Review] "Han Gong-ju": Mind the Gap 2015/02/14
In the spotlight this week: Lee Su-jin's "Han Gong-ju"...
Violence and sex naturally find their way in cinema. The play of shadows casts fantasy worlds for us to enjoy and exist in, desire-dripping entertainment that may be indulged as either dream or nightmare depending.
There are, obviously, shades of grey tethered along this sadomasochistic spectrum, but the pure violence of the act is too often in service to excessive pleasure-"Enjoy!", we are told, and we do excessively well for ourselves,...More
[HanCinema's Box Office Review] 2015.01.23 - 2015.01.25 2015/01/26 Yoo's "Blues" shakes things up…Yoo Ha's action noir "Gangnam Blues" (aka "Gangnam 1970") was the number one player at box office over the weekend, pocketing over $5.5M (27%) and coming out on top in what was the most closely-contested tussle at the top we've seen thus far. The 709K filmgoers Yoo persuade into his caves (830) was narrowly enough to spoil Disney's big animated entrance into the game. "Big Hero 6" was, like Yoo's "Blues", released in Korea last Wednesday, and competed over 822 screens to claimed 662K stubs ($5M - 25%). It was an awesome photo finish that ultimately favoured homemade Han over foreign fantasy, but only just,...More
'The Attorney' Sweeps Blue Dragon Film Awards 2014/12/18, Source Chun Woo-hee (left) and Song Kang-ho"The Attorney" directed by Yang Woo-seok won three awards including best film at the 35th Blue Dragon Film Awards on Wednesday. Inspired by a famous 1981 human-rights case led by late President Roh Moo-hyun, who was then a successful tax lawyer in Busan and turned to human rights law to defend the accused, the film is the sixth biggest box office hit in the history of Korean cinema. It attracted 11.3 million viewers since its release in December last year,...More
[HanCinema's Box Office Review] 2014.12.12 ~ 2014.12.14
2014/12/15 Lovely Indie Makes History…
The biblical epic "Exodus: Gods and Kings" failed to return to the top celebrating a narrow victory over the cosmically curious "Interstellar" last weekend. Week two for Ridley's personal odyssey (the film is dedicated to the late Tony Scott) was not as promising as its entry; it slumped to third having captured only 18% (346K) of the box office pie. Above came Nolan's "Interstellar" (396K – 20%), still short 300K of the 10M admissions mark, and, more historically, came this week's number one: "My Love, Don't Cross That River",...More
[HanCinema's Film Review] "Compassion" 2014/10/31
At the beginning of "Compassion", A girl kills herself. Why did she kill herself, someone asks? Probably bullying, says someone else. Well, let's move on then. The entire opening takes on a pretty creepy subtext in light of all the other films released this year about bullying and teen suicide. Sure, we can talk up the tragic nature of the situation, and lament the sad state of a world where such things are inevitable. But is anyone actually going to do anything about it?,...More
[HanCinema's Film Review] "Han Gong-ju" 2014/06/20
When title character Gong-ju (played by Chun Woo-hee) says that the troubling past incident she's trying to escape from wasn't her fault, the young student really means it. Even by the most asinine interpretation of events, Gong-ju did everything correctly. She tried to keep the situation from escalating, she tried to get help when her efforts failed, and she didn't engage in any illegal activity. It just wasn't good enough. About the only thing she could have done to evade what happened was to not make or hold on to any friends ever,...More
[HanCinema's Box Office Review] 2014.05.23 ~ 2014.05.25 2014/05/26 Marvel's mutants dominate and send "Godzilla" packing…
Last weekend Kim Dae-woo's "Obsessed" and the latest "Godzilla" flick slugged it out at the top as Korean cinephiles were torn between a local delight and a potentially impressive alien invasion. This week, however, saw the release of the much anticipated "X-Men: Days of Future Past", a comic-inspired event that promptly settled last week's tussle by snatching over 64% of the box office pie. Marvel's mutants mounted an all-out assault and forced the rest of the pack to scramble for stubs, resulting in a landslide victory as it pooled support from over a 1,000 screens nationwide,...More
[HanCinema's Box Office Review] 2014.05.16 ~ 2014.05.18 2014/05/19 Korean's torn between romance and rampage...
There was an intense tussle at the top over the weekend as the American giant "Godzilla" took on Kim Dae-woo's "Obsessed". While Gareth Edward's monster remake seized the lion's share of the pie (23.8% from 438,487 admissions), it was Kim's third feature that seduced the majority of filmgoers into the cinemas with over 445K tickets sold (23.5%). It was relatively fair game as both films opened their accounts with over 600 screens to pool from, but the local talent teased out a narrow victory over the gargantuan ghost and ultimately put more bums on seats,...More
[HanCinema's Box Office Review] 2014.05.02 ~ 2014.05.04 2014/05/05 All hail the new King!
The box office came alive over the weekend as a string of features stamped their authority and invigorated sales at the top of order. Lee Jae-gyoo's "The Fatal Encounter" (previously known as "The King's Wrath") soared into pole position with over a million tickets to its name; a healthy haul that was no doubt spurred by Hyun Bin's role as the discerning (and now historically handsome) King Jeongjo. The film opened to over a thousand screens and made the most of them by capturing over 38% of box office pie. Other films that made an impact included last week's number one "The Amazing Spiderman 2", Director Chang's "The Target", and the foreign animation "Rio 2",...More
Starlet Delivers Nuanced Performance as Rape Victim 2014/05/03, Source
Actress Chun Woo-hee played a rebellious teenager in "Sunny - 2010" (2011) and a breadwinner looking after her younger sister instead of her errant father in "Thread of Lies" (2014). In "Han Gong-ju" (2014) Cheon takes on the even more daunting role of a high school girl who is gang-raped by her male peers. "I sometimes regretted that I couldn't get my career going in an easier way as I kept getting offered complicated characters with hard lives who were difficult to portray. But I now believe that I was chosen because I have the ability to act well and deliver the right message", said Cheon,...More
[HanCinema's Box Office Review] 2014.04.25 ~ 2014.04.27 2014/04/28 "Spiderman" swings in and dominates...
After a solid four weeks at the top of the pile Marvel's "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" has finally been ousted by another American superhero. "The Amazing Spiderman 2" swung into contention this past week and swept the competition cleanly aside, clinging onto more than 72% of the total ticket sales and racing to 1.6M admissions. The web-slinger opened its Korean account to 1,312 screens, more than double its closest rival "Mr. Peabody & Sherman" which also entered the fray but had only 533 venues to campaign from,...More
[HanCinema's Box Office Review] 2014.04.18 - 2014.04.20 2014/04/21 The "Captain" remains on course...
The weather may be heating up but Marvel's "Winter Soldier" still managed to stick it out for yet another week at the top of the pile. The comic captain added another 242,939 admissions (24.2%) over this past weekend to bump its bottom line to $28.6M (3.7M admissions), securing its place as the fourth highest grossing film of the year. The "Captain", however, had some stiff competition this time around as Neil Burger's sci-fi action film "Divergent" snatched a virtuous 212K (21.1%) during its first weekend out. Overall, foot traffic has been soft this year, and the Korean representatives have struggled to find/maintain traction in the top ten,...More
Han Gong-ju (2013) 2014/04/18, Source
Genres: Drama Running Time: 112 min.
Directed by: Lee Su-jin
Starring: Chun Woo-hee, Jung In-sun, Kim So-yeong, Lee Young-ran
Synopsis: Involved in a scandalous accident, high school girl Han Gong-ju is forced to change schools. Her parents cannot look after her, so she stays at the home of her new teacher's mother. A mere victim, having done nothing wrong herself, Gong-ju is forced to shun others' attention. But one day her new friend Eun-hee finds that Gong-ju is a good singer and gets her into the school a capella club,...More
[HanCinema's Film News] New Korean Films Inbound... 2014/04/12 K-Films Coming Soon:
★★★★★ "Han Gong-ju": A student struggles to escape her past at a new school in this compelling debut drama. (04/17)
★★★★ "One Summer Night": A romantic tale about broken hearts, abandonment, and newly confessed love. (04/17)
★★★ "God's Eye View": A missionary group are abducted by Islamic rebels and fear their faith is slipping away. (04/17)
★★★★ "Uigwe, the 8-Day Festival 3D": The KBS Documentary team that recorded the 8 books of Joseon's 22nd King Jeong-jo's 8-day festival revives this event in Korea's very own 3D technology. (04/17)
★★★ "KaTalk Project": Eleven upcoming Korean Art School students have gathered together to show modern children the definition of fun in art. (04/17)
★★★★ "The Legacy": A struggling law student has to deal with academic pressures, his dying father, and a would-be sibling who suddenly appears. (04/17)
★★★★ "Make Your Move": A top dancer falls in love with a rival club's sister and has to deal with the consequences. (04/17),...More
Korean Indie Flick Sweeps Awards at French Film Festival 2014/03/12, Source
Director Lee Su-jin hoists his trophy after receiving the jury prize award at the Deauville Asian Film Festival in France on Monday. /Courtesy of Movie Collage
Director Lee Su-jin's "Han Gong-ju" picked up three prestigious prizes at the recently ended Deauville Asian Film Festival in France.
It won the jury prize, popular choice and international critique awards at the event, which ran from Wednesday to Sunday, the film's distributor Movie Collage said on Monday,...More
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