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[Movie 2008] Break Away 탈주 (Official Release : 2 September 2010)

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Credit kdramafanusa.

Posted: Fri., Nov. 7, 2008, 8:26pm PT

Fine Cut takes two S. Korean films

'Break Away,' 'Elephant' both picked up


Fine Cut, which is representing foreign-language Oscar contenders from three separate countries, has added two new movies from South Korea.

From helmer Leesong Hee-il ("No Regret"), it has acquired "Break Away," a dramatic story based on a real incident involving three soldiers on the run for six days. Pic is in post-production and will be ready in time for the Berlin fest in February.

Company has also picked up "Searching for the Elephant," a debut feature by S.K. Jhung. Pic stars Jang Hyuk of "Volcano High" fame as one of three men who have known one another since childhood but have successfully hidden their dirty secrets. Pic is also in post-production.

Fine Cut, formed by former Cineclick Asia topper Suh Youngjoo, is handling sales on Afghan Oscar hopeful "The Opium War," by Siddiq Barmak; Argentina's "Lion's Den," by Pablo Trapero; and South Korea's "Crossing," by Kim Tae-Kyun.

Source: Variety

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Credit : FineCut


Abandoning their military post, three soldiers escape together for different reasons. Among the three deserters, Jae-hoon escapes to see his mother who is on her deathbed from a terminal cancer, the troublemaker Min-jae escapes to take revenge against his girlfriend who betrayed him and the rookie named Dong-min escapes unable to bear the constant assaults of his seniors. As the search party closes in on them, Dong-min commits suicide from the overwhelming pressure. With no way out, Jae-hoon and Min-jae struggle to escape the situation with the help of Jae-hoon's love interest, So-young.



Born in 1971, director LEESONG Hee-il started off as a prominent short filmmaker. His feature debut NO REGRET, a bold and daring queer romance film, brought him both critical acclaim and commercial success. NO REGRET traveled to numerous international film festivals including Berlin (Panorama section) and Pusan.

In his own way, he expresses strict military control in its closed environment and eruption of resistance under unbearable conflicts, the fury and despair of youths through ‘military desertion’ as a subject matter. His unique directorial tone that is both sensitive yet aggressive, shall be a strength to this film once more.



- 57th Berlin International Film Festival-Panorama

- 11th Pusan International Film Festival-Korean Cinema Today, Vision

Director's Statement

I wanted to tell a story about runaway soldiers. I was wondering why despite incidents of hundreds of runaway soldiers a year, their stories were not dealt with in commercial or independent films. Though insufficient, I wanted to touch on their story. Rather than focusing on the area inside the army, I wanted to explore what the runaway soldiers would do after their escape.

This story is also about maternal love. When I first thought about maternal love, director Grigory CHUKHRAI’s 1960 film, BALLAD OF A SOLDIER, came to mind. It was about a soldier running home towards his mother. Rather than tell a huge story on the motive of runaway soldiers, I wanted to indirectly criticize the paternal authoritative problems in the army in a tributary way towards mothers. Rather than telling the story from the POV of the insider of a desertion case, I thought it would have more convincing power if the story dealt with the mother, whom all Korean men feel indebted to.

Cast & Tech Info


Jae-hoon - LEE Yeong-hoon

So-young - SO Yu-jin

Min-jae - JIN Yi-han


Director LEESONG Hee-il

Executive Producer KIMJHO Gwang-soo,LEE Sun-mi

Producer CHO Yoon-jin

Screenplay LEESONG Hee-il

Cinematographer YUN Ji-un

Lighting Director KANG Seong-hun

Editor LEESONG Hee-il

Original Music LEE Byung-hoon

Sound LEE Sung-jin

Tech Info

Production Year 2009

Country of Production Korea

Language Korean

Gauge HD

Running Time 109 min.

Screen Ratio 2.35:1

Color Color

Sound Stereo

Production Budget US$ 0.7 mil.






A Generation Blue Films production, in association with KTB. (International sales: Finecut, Seoul.) Produced by Jo Yun-jin. Executive producers, Kim Jo Gwang-su, Lee Seon-mi. Directed, written by Lee Song Hee-il.

With: Lee Yeong-hun, So Yu-jin, Jin I-han.

Three young South Korean military deserters are hunted down by both army and police in "Break Away," a classy little drama-cum-genre exercise made with minimal resources. Writer-director Lee Song Hee-il, known for "No Regret" (the first gay feature by an openly out Korean filmer), wraps an anti-authoritarian message in the main story of his sophomore feature. Fantasy/genre fest programmers should take a look.

Set across five days, and reportedly based on a true story, the yarn starts with the trio already being hunted by soldiers in the countryside: Park Min-jae (singer Jin I-han), a macho corporal who led the escape by wounding a superior; nerdy Kim Dong-min, bullied by other soldiers; and Kang Jae-hun (Lee Yeong-hun, "No Regret"), whose mother is dying of cancer. After Kim shoots himself, Park and Kang hop a ride to Seoul, where Kang persuades his g.f. (So Yu-jin) to help them. Claustrophobic atmosphere of being chased in a small, tightly controlled country is suspensefully maintained, as the media latch onto the story and the deserters try to see justice done. Crisp widescreen HD lensing is a further plus.

Camera (color, widescreen, HD), Yun Ji-woon; editor, Lee Song; music, Lee Byong-hun. Reviewed at Pusan Film Festival (Korean Cinema Today), Oct. 14, 2009. Original title: Talju. Running time: 109 MIN.

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