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[Movie 2012] 26 Years 26년


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Dear @cynkdf, @rubie and all 26 Years members here. I'm sorry that I have not come here so often. I have followed the news of this movie constantly. I have watched it with no sub. I enjoyed it even without sub titles. I'm now so dying for English subtitles.
I have received OST of this movie today. What made it so special is, it has all the leads' autographs. I'm so thrilled and would like to share them with you.

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Thanks alex1999 for sharing the CD booklet! I notice some fans of the movie received the autographed CD too - were they given to those who had sponsored the film? If so then maybe one is along its way to me too.....together with the DVD which I know for sure I was to get a copy but hopefully the change of address to a Korean address was successfully made because I was told they were not mailing the DVD outside of Korea. 

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@wmpc, you are welcome. Actually, I asked my brother who is a tour guide to buy this CD. It is 50,000 won, which is much more expensive than normal OST CD. He texted me whether I still wanted it but I was too late to tell him not to buy it. I just found out that it is expensive because it has all the leads' autographs. I am so happy then. So you are one of the sponsors? Wow, I'm so thrilled to know this fact. Many people would feel connected and ownership with this movie then. I'm not sure if they would give the CD to the sponsors though. 

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Alex. thanks for posting the awesome pics of the CD - happy for you and just a tad envious :)   
Wendy, hope the DVD reaches you soon. Someone kindly uploaded the movie on Youtube (I don't know how to download) and I managed to watch it once just before it was "not available because of copyright".   Loved how BSB looks in "26 Years"  and on that video, he first made his appearance around the 26th minute mark.

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alex1999 - yes I think you're right about the CD not being for the sponsors. If it was for sale, I guess it's only for sale. How are the songs on the OST?
Cyn - you'll probably get a copy too but I got news that it may not be out til June!! Was the uploaded movie on youtube with English subs?

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February 12, 2013
The Ultimate Revenge Narrative: 26 Years (26년, 26-nyeon) 2012
by Pierce Conran MKC
Just like anyone else, I come from a country (Ireland) with historical scars that refuse to completely fade away. The sad fact is that these days my connection with my home is tenuous at best. Nevertheless, as we approach the centenary following the Easter Rising of 1916, this terrible event that saw a group a passionate Irishman stand up to their English oppressors, only to be brutally suppressed, is still an indelible part of who I am.
My grandmother (who recently died aged 100) was only four when it happened. It should be ancient history for me: a bygone event that took place in a country I didn't much of my youth in and that I don’t easily identify with. Yet somehow, I feel a sense of solidarity with those young men (and a few women) who stood up to an unvanquishable foe in the name of what they felt was right.
Given the strength of such an event on someone so far removed from it, I can only imagine what the Gwangju Massacre of 1980 means to Koreans. Far more recent and a great deal more traumatic, not to mention unresolved, it is an atrocity that has deeply affected the nation. Late last year, following a contentious journey to the big screen was the adaptation of Gang Pool’s graphic novel ‘26 Years.’ Its premise is simple: three young relatives of Gwangju victims are brought together a quarter century later to assassinate the orchestrator of that infamous day, former president Chun Doo-hwan.
Crowd-funded with small contributions from over 15,000 donors, 26 Years was a triumph at the box office, and one that opened up more than a few wounds for the almost three million locals who saw it. After a brief opening in the present (actually 2006), the film quickly goes back to that day in May 1980. A 10-minute animated sequence unfolds which shows us the fate of the father, mother and sister of our trio of central characters. The drawn images are brutal and harrowing. The decision to animate this part of the film is an effective one reminiscent of Persepolis (2007), Waltz With Bashir (2008) but also the recent King of Pigs (2011).
The pressing weight of contemporary Korean history lends a potent gravity to the film while the project’s stylish trimmings and youthful energy invigorate it. Debut director Jo Keun-hyung, with a big helping hand from producer Cho Young-bae, produces a taut thriller that simmers along on the currents of recent history. Angry but focused, the film seeks one thing: an apology. Though in its’ absence, it will settle for retribution.
Chun Doo-hwan was tried, convicted and sentenced to death for his part in the massacre, during which up to 2,000 civilians were shot or beaten to death by the military. He never apologized for his crimes and his sentence was subsequently commuted by President Kim Young-sam. Unsurprisingly, many are still bitter as he idles away his remaining days in a big house under armed guard.
As far as revenge narratives go, it’s hard to top this one, as many local viewers will have a personal stake in the fate of the target. Unlike the similarly incendiary National Security from Chung Ji-young (released around the same time), this work doesn’t really set out to explore the possibility of forgiveness or redemption. Rather, it’s a fantastical narrative that pits spectators against their long-held traumas.
Performances throughout are strong, Jin Goo has a kinetic energy as the edgy gangster while supporting players like Lee Kyoung-young and Bae Soo-bin add suitable gravitas to the proceedings. However, as the ex-President, Gwang Jang steals the show. Following an equally terrifying role in 2011’s Silenced and a great supporting turn in last year’s Masquerade, former animation voice actor Gwang brings the former dictator to life as a fiercely menacing and apathetic figure.
I should offer a minor spoiler warning for what’s coming so please skip down to the next paragraph if you so wish. When the assassins finally descend on former president Chun’s complex in a riveting, intense and protracted sequence, the filmmakers easily toy with our expectations. Chun is very much alive and well and so killing him on screen, given many Korean citizen’s feelings towards him, is a dangerous proposition. You never really expect it to happen but the former dictator does find himself in a good half dozen situations where he is an inch from death, his life in the hands of a number of vengeful protagonists. The only problem is that they play this trick one too many times, the tension gradually subsiding with each subsequent brush with death.
Daring and powerful, 26 Years is one of Korean Cinema’s most direct confrontations with their traumatic history. The film grabs you from the outset and never lets go: propelled by bold revisionism and its harnessing of a nation’s outrage. While it may not feature the intricate and subtle artistry of works such as Lee Chang-dong’s Peppermint Candy (1999) or Bong Joon-ho’s Memories of Murder (2003), Jo Keun-hyung’s searing feature debut nevertheless makes for thrilling viewing.

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@wmpc, I don't think a DVD will be sent to me (I was aware they don't ship the DVD overseas so didn't make any request for it). Will wait for it to be on sale :)  The movie on YT didn't have English subs, unfortunately, but I was so grateful to have watched it anyway (too bad it was just once, though).
@rubie - thanks very much for posting that superb (and complimentary :)) review by Pierce Conran. I don't agree with him about Jang Gwang being the show-stealer, IMHO it was Jin Goo who stood out.

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Hi there 26 Years fans, I was surprised these pics (originally tweeted by Lim Seul On @2AMONG) have not been posted here yet. Apparently they are from a recording of the commentary of cast/crew for the DVD of the movie. No wonder I'm still waiting for my copy - can't wait to watch the movie finally with English subs!!!




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Updated: JUL 17, 2013

Prosecutors raid former Pres. Chun Doo-hwan's home

 Prosecutors raid former Pres. Chun Doo-hwan's home

State prosecutors took action on Tuesday to hunt down secret funds they believe former Korean President Chun Doo-hwan has stashed throughout the world, money that was accumulated through corrupt activities during his presidency in the 1980s.
Prosecutors raided the home of the former president as well as a publishing company and an herb farm owned by his eldest son, Chun Jae-kook . 
Expensive artwork was discovered during the raids at Chun's house in eastern Seoul and if they are found to have been purchased with the former president's money, they will be turned over to the state. 
A team of around 80 investigators also seized computer disks and documents they hope might lead them to more information on Chun's assets.
Chun's son was recently named by a local media outlet as one of a number of people suspected of hiding funds in offshore tax havens.
That fueled suspicion that the money he has reportedly hidden could be linked to his father's slush funds.
Former President Chun was ordered by a court in 1997 to return around 220 billion won, or roughly 190 million U.S. dollars that officials said he had collected illegally during his seven-plus years in office.
Chun has paid back less than a quarter of that total so far, but says he is broke and can't afford to pay the rest.
Hwang Ji-hye, Arirang News.

Reporter : emilyfwang@arirang.co.kr

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April 9, 2014
Crowdfunding a new direction for filmmaking
By CARLA SUNWOO Korea JoongAng Daily

‘For them, it’s not so much about how well these films do at the box office, but rather the feeling they get from contributing to a worthy cause
In a country that prides itself on cutting-edge technology, a documentary about a shaman wasn’t going to be a box-office blockbuster.
“Because of the subject matter, we thought it’d be difficult to promote,” said Jeon Ji-yoon, project manager at a crowdfunding website for films called Funding 21 who oversaw Park Chan-kyong’s art-house film “Manshin.”
So imagine Park and Jeon’s surprise when the film based on the life of Kim Geum-hwa, an 83-year-old exorcist, rose to the top of art-house charts last month. 
“The film ended up being released at a lot more theaters than we planned,” said Jeon, still a bit shocked by the success of the taboo film, which remains in the top five. 
“I guess a lot of people who were interested in preserving traditional culture sponsored us,” said Park. 
In exchange, those people received VIP screening tickets and their names were featured in the credits.
While just 55 percent of the $20 million won ($19,031) target sum was collected, the money was never the point for Park. For him, crowdfunding offered an opportunity to communicate with people about his full feature debut.
“With movies like this, you can’t really advertise on TV,” says Park, who, although new to films, picked up a trick or two from his older brother, director Park Chan-wook (“Oldboy”). 
More so than the sponsorship, Park sees meaning in “participation and dialogue.” It also helped that crowdfunding websites are linked to most SNS websites, which means sponsors often tweet, share and re-tweet about “their” film.
“We do promote the films in Cine21 [parent company and movie publication], but we do find that SNS is a more compatible media,” said Jeon, adding that filmmakers have begun to use crowdfunding as a means to allow individuals to fund the projects they believe in.
The truth is that if he wanted, Park easily could have found an investor with his connections in the industry, but he believes crowdfunding “fell in line” with his goal “to get people involved.” 
While crowdfunded movies have been surfacing in the last two years, it’s only in recent months that filmmakers have caught on to the peripheral benefits it brings. 
And in the wake of this realization, the possibilities for the medium seem limitless, as both filmmakers and crowdfunding platforms have a chance to reinvent themselves. 
Compared to the United States, where websites like Kickstarter have been offering artists a platform to raise funds for the past five years, the movement in Korea and crowdfunded movies in particular were introduced just two years ago. 
The three main players in crowdfunding films are the websites Funding 21, Good Funding and Tumblbug.
From top: The first crowdfunded film “26 Years” began the onslaught of real-life based films; This year’s “Another Family” surpassed the 100 million won (95,300 U.S.Dollar ) mark in less than a month of crowdfunding; Veteran director Im Kwon-taek’s latest film is also looking for sponsors on Funding 21.
And of these, it was Good Funding that got the ball rolling with the film “26 Years” based on a webtoon about the Gwangju uprising of 1980.
Although the manuscript for the film had been around for years prior to production, the project failed to attract investors because it deals with a sensitive event in Korean history where about 165 protesters were killed by the military. 
But once the project made its way to Good Funding, the public was more than willing to help out. The film raised 380 million won, and while it didn’t reach its goal of 1 billion won, the publicity the film received was enough to attract additional investors. 
As the pioneering crowdfunded film, “26 Years” paved the way for a plethora of disturbing films based on real-life cases of sexual abuse, societal ills and corruption. Despite the low budget, the fact that the films were “funded by the people” often made headlines and ensured enough publicity to draw people in. 
Most recently, “Another Family,” which was released in February, put Samsung Electronics to shame by telling the tale of a young woman who died of leukemia after working at one of its semi-conductor plants. 
“As the film was putting the blame on a conglomerate, it was impossible to secure investors, and at first they didn’t think it’d be able to open in theaters,” said Choi Min-ho of Good Funding. 
Once up for sponsorship on Good Funding, the film raised 100 million won in less than a month and eventually pulled in 305 million won through the website and private investors. 
From messages of support left on the websites, it’s clear to see that these sponsors were the film’s best marketing team. 
“For them it’s not so much about how well these films do at the box office, but rather the feeling they get from contributing to a worthy cause,” said Jeon.
“Sponsors are not investors and don’t get a say in production, nor are they given any of the benefits that a donator or investor has by law,” said Jun Sang-joon, digital business department head at Funding 21. 
But these sponsors don’t stop with just contributing money. 
In the case of “26 Years,” sponsors rented out a theater in case the film wasn’t allowed to be screened elsewhere. 
These eager sponsors - representing a wide range of demographics and political orientations - are changing the traditional business model for film production based on commercial potential.
“It’s funny, because films that look too commercial don’t fare too well with us,” said Jeon on what sort of projects attract sponsors. “Sponsors don’t want to fund movies that look fun.
Jeon said that movies “with heart” often win out over those with a known actor or a mainstream plot.
Director Park Chan-kyong, center, said it wasn’t the money as much as the marketing effect of crowdfunding that was responsible for the success of his indie film “Manshin.” Provided by Funding 21
In the case of “Another Family,” there were sponsors from across the spectrum: a 28-year-old who gave up traveling the world for a year to get behind the film, and a 37-year-old father who said it was his gift to Korea before emigrating.
The online buzz often generated by these kinds of people who feel as if they are helping to make cinematic history is the best promotion a film can have. 
Platforms also are changing to suit the market. Directors can apply for crowdfunding before, during and after production.
In their early days, crowdfunding websites had an “all or nothing” approach. If the goal wasn’t reached, the money was returned. 
But with money no longer the sole impetus of crowdfunding, companies are relaxing their rules.
Established in 2011, Tumblbug was founded when company representative Yum Jae-seung, a film student at the time, discovered he couldn’t use Kickstarter in Korea. 
“So I thought it’d be cool to start a platform that Koreans could use,” said Yum. 
Since then, more than 164 films have been given the chance to see the light of day and 92 of them reached their fund-raising goal on the website. But change was needed to accommodate those works that didn’t quite meet the target. 
“Since last year, we have offered a ‘keep it all’ option where the project will still be allocated the amount it pooled,” said Yum. “This was necessary as more directors sign up with the sole purpose of marketing before the film’s release.” 
The range of genres up for sponsorship is growing, too. 
“Lazy Hitchhikers’ Tour de Europe” was a feel-good movie about a group of youths traveling through Europe on just 800,000 won. 
Although not tied to a social issue, the film’s premise captivated sponsors and served as proof that it’s not just the films dealing with serious topics that succeed. 
“The genre is mattering less and less, but the films have got to have something that people can relate to,” said Jeon. 
Accordingly, both well-known and unknown filmmakers are vying for a spot on the websites, as they know that word-of-mouth publicity is priceless. 
Two weeks ago, veteran director Im Kwon-taek announced he will seek funding for his 102nd film “Make-up” through Funding 21. The film’s target goal of 200 million won marks it as the website’s most ambitious project to date. 
Yesterday, the film had reached 1.1 million won. But again, money isn’t everything for Im. 
“Although he is an esteemed director, those in their 20s are not so familiar with him,” said Jeon. “Through SNS, we hope to be able to spread the word to all demographics.”
As crowdfunding makes the transition from a source of financing to a marketing platform for directors, another change could be just around the bend. 
“We are hoping that a change in the private equity law will help us out,” said Jun, regarding the possibility of an amendment later this year or early next year that would classify films as a private investment for individuals. “It’ll be interesting to see if the decision-making process changes as people become investors.
“Will they think about the returns on the film projects or the causes behind them?” 
By CARLA SUNWOO [carlasunwoo@joongang.co.kr]

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