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January 23, 2015
Review of 'Ode to My Father' By Lee Sun-ho The Korea Times
"Ode to My Father" ― entitled "Gukje Sijang" denoting "International Market" in Korean ― portrays an emotionally heartbreaking spectacle through the character of Deok-soo, an ordinary Busan man whose life encompasses some significant landmarks in Korea's turbulent modern history. 
I enjoyed watching this melodramic film directed by Yoon Je-kyoon and distributed by CJ E&T twice this month. Starring Hwang Jung-min (as Yun Deok-soo) and Kim Yun-jin (as Oh Young-ja), the blockbuster depicts a sequence of Korea's milestone events from the 1950s into the 1980s, a decades-long odyssey I remember well.
During the Heungnam Port Evacuation on Christmas Eve in 1950 amid the Korean War, when thousands of refugees in what would become North Korea were transported south by U.S. navy ships, the child Deok-soo loses track of his youngest sister Mak-soon. Because of the life-or-death chaos, his father, Yoon Jin-gyu (played by Jung Jin-young) stays behind to search for her, asking his son to take his mother and his two younger siblings to the port city of Busan, where his aunt runs an imported goods store. He does all manner of odd jobs to support his family. 
This makes me recall my refugee boy life in Busan, where I often passed Gukje Sijang, where many people, local or immigrant, were engaged in all sorts of merchandise sales, and where my contemporary-aged small children begged American GIs by shouting, "Hello, give me chocolates."
In 1963, financial need forces him to go to West Germany with his lifelong friend Oh Dal-soo (Dal-goo), where they find dangerous work as gastarbeiters (guest workers) in the German coal mines. There Deok-soo falls in love with a fellow migrant nurse Young-ja. They begin a family back in Busan and eventually have two sons. Working in Germany, either as coal miners or nurses, brought many couples together.
Due to the necessity of feeding their families, Deok-soo and Dal-goo leave Korea again in 1973 in search of better opportunities, this time to war-torn South Vietnam. Through their ordeals and adventures in the dangerous tropical land, Dal-soo meets a Vietnamese girl and gets married back in Gukje Sijang. During the time of war in Vietnam, I stayed in Manila. I remember U.S. Air Force B-52 fighters used to take off from Philippines's Clark Air Base to bomb North Vietnamese enemy targets. The participation in the Vietnam War either as civilian workers or combat fighters contributed a great deal to the economic take-off for Korea, no doubt.
The dramatic, rendezvous events promoted by KBS among separated family members during the Korean conflict are exceptionally tearful scenes to watch, broadcast nationwide for 138 days starting on June 30, 1983. Deok-soo is, at last, successful in finding his lost sister. She was able to get on board an evacuation vessel at Heungnam in late December 1950 and was sent to the South. However, she was adopted to an American family and got married to an American man.
Upon the occupation of Seoul by North Korean troops on June 27, 1950, my 35-year-old father (deceased in 2002) was forced to join their Cultural Maneuvering Squads in Seoul. In the middle of night, they were transported en masse to the North, and U.S. Fifth Air Force bombers attacked them. Since the squadron members were scattered, my father was given the lucky chance to escape from the group. If it were not for timely air raids, my parents and my siblings would have become a separated family until today, as portrayed by Deok-soo's misfortune.
The constant pain and suffering to be overcome in Deok-soo's life, his family and their store in Gukje Sijang tells me the dogged resilience of the father, and Korea's past endurance for four decades. We have to reassess the true story of the war, truce and reconstruction of the country during the Syngman Rhee period; the sweat and toils for growth and development during Park Chung-hee's reign; and the continued endeavor for patriotic strides afterward, without pride and prejudice.
It is regrettable to know that some pro-North, left-wing sympathizers and anti-government, anti-American radical netizens put distorted, false propaganda on SNS sites about the 126-minute movie released on Dec. 17, breaking the record of 10 million theatergoers within a month. They should rewind their biased consciousness into reality, as Korean War generation adults fully experienced the true behind-the-scenes non-fiction with warm hearts and cool heads.
The writer is an outside director of Samyang Tongsang Co. in Seoul. Contact him at kexim2@unitel,co.kr

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January 31, 2015
'Ode to my Father' becomes one of the top 5 most successful Korean films Source: STARN News
'Ode to my Father' became one of the top 5 most successful Korean films.
As of January 30th, movie 'Ode to my Father' surpassed 12,320,000 viewers.
'Ode to my Father' had achieved the highest opening score (184,972), and on January 1st, 'Ode to my Father' attracted 751,123 viewers just in one day.
'Ode to my Father' is the 8th Korean film to surpass 12 million viewers after 'Taegukgi (11,746,135),' and 'King And The Clown (12,319,542).'
'Ode to my Father' is on its 7th week, and on January 29th, it debuted #1 on Box Office Chart, winning over many other hit films that were released after. If this pace continues, 'Ode to my Father' will be able to surpass the highest score of 'Miracle in Cell No. 7.'
Meanwhile, 'Ode to my Father' is being played at every movie theaters around Korea.
/Reporting by Lee Mi-Ji en@starnnews.com

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Photo credit: seoulitenewyorker via Instagramseoulitenewyorker_hjm2.jpg


Korean article at naver (22.01.2015), thanks to PlanetBH0712 for the highlight

June 1, 2013 Issue No.152
‘Movie Street’ to be created in Haeundae Source: Dynamic Busan
A “Movie Street” will be created in the film city of Busan.
The eight kilometers from Haeundae Centum City’s Busan Cinema Center to Haeundae Beach to Moontan Road will be called “Movie Street.” The street will create five stories: a place where one can encounter films, become friends with films, play with films, immerse in films and reminisce about films. Movie aficionados can get a sense of “watching a movie” as they walk along this street. The third area (among five areas of the street), from Marine City to Dongbaek Island, will be created first. The third area will start at the embankment of Marine City, where visitors can watch major scenes of a movie through trick art and graphics, and in the middle of the area, they can rest at the observation deck and rest area. The observation deck, created in the likeness of a boat in “Pirates of the Caribbean,” will allow visitors to get a sense of falling into the scene of an actual movie. The latter part of the area will be “Red Carpet Street,” where visitors can pretend to be movie stars walking along the red carpet, and “History Street,” which shows the growth of BIFF on an LED screen.
This street will also have Music Road, and Music Fountain.
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February 5, 2015
'Ode to My Father' Remains Strong at Box Office
Source: The Chosun Ilbo
"Ode to My Father" has become one of the most successful films in the history of Korean cinema. The film attracted 12.82 million viewers as of Tuesday, becoming the most successful melodrama. 
The film keeps breaking records as it drew the largest number of moviegoers in a day with 751,253 viewers on Jan. 1 and became the first film of the year to attract over 10 million spectators. It still remains at the top of the box office eighth weeks after its release in late December.
It remains to be seen whether the film will break the records set by "The Thieves" (12.98 million viewers) and "The Host" (13.02 million).
The touching story of modern Korean history involving a man's sacrifices for his family is receiving rave reviews from viewers of all generations.

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February 9, 2015
'Ode to My Father' 2nd Biggest Box-Office Hit of All Time
Source: The Chosun Ilbo
"Ode to My Father" had drawn over 13 million viewers as of last week, according to the Korean Film Council.
It is now the second biggest box-office hit in the history of Korean cinema after "Roaring Currents," which attracted 17.61 million viewers last year.
The melodrama, which drew 13.02 million moviegoers in the two months since its release in late December, also moved past a previous record-holder, Bong Joon-ho's "The Host" (13.01 million). If foreign films are counted, it is now the third-most-successful film ever released in Korea, after James Cameron's "Avatar."
"It is expected to beat the record set by 'Avatar' soon, as it is still attracting many moviegoers," the film's production company said Sunday.
The film, which depicts a man's sacrifices for his family while caught in the vortex of the Korean War, has been invited to this year's Berlin International Film Festival, which wraps up its weeklong schedule of events this weekend.

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65thBerlinale.jpgFebruary 9, 2015

Poster Exhibition of Korean Films in the History of Berlin International Film FestivalA Chance to Witness ‘Hallyu’ from 1960s Berlinale by NA Won-jung /  KOBIZ  Korean Film Council (KOFIC, Chairman: KIM Sae-hoon) organized a special event in commemoration of the relationship between Berlin International Film Festival and the Korean film industry. Korean film was first invited to Berlin in the 60s. Starting with KANG Dae-jin’s 1961 film A Coachman and SHIN Sang-ok’s To the Death in 1962, Korean films won the Silver Bear back to back, bringing recognition to the films from Korea. However, “Most film industry professionals attending Berlin believe that Korean films have only come into the spotlight recently,” said Korean Cultural Center in Berlin’s LEE Jung-il. This is one of the reasons why the Korean Cultural Center and KOFIC organized the special poster exhibition of past Korean films invited to Berlin this year.
On the second day of the 65th Berlin International Film Festival, the 2nd floor of the Korean Cultural Center in Berlin was filled with 20 or so film posters from old to new. The exhibition included the poster of A Coachman, IM Kwon-taek’s 1986 film Kilsodeum which went to Berlin’s competition, the winner of 2004 Best Director Prize Samaritan Girl, by KIM Ki-duk, the winner of 2007 Alfred Bauer, PARK Chan-wook’s I’m a Cyborg, But That’s OK, HONG Sang-soo’s 2013 film Nobody’s Daughter Haewon, as well as this year’s five invited films includingOde to My Father in panorama, Revivre in Critics’ Week were hung up together. On the other side of the space, the directors who attended Berlin in the past had their profile photos printed in black and white. The exhibition was accompanied by Korean traditional snacks for the viewers to enjoy. The Korean Cultural Center in Berlin is also the very space that is used every year during the Berlin International Film Festival to hold the Korean Film Night reception where KOFIC introduces Korean films to international industry delegates. On the 9th of February, with a retro theme, the reception is planning to play music from the 70s to the 90s with different kinds of Korean traditional food. Some market screenings of smaller Korean films also take place in the building. MpwcZxDARnRarUZbQMqF.jpg
Korean Film Council’s Woody KIM said, “the event is a chance to look at the footprint of Korean films at Berlin International Film Festival…I hope this year’s Korean Film Night will be able to shine a new light on Korean films to the festival guests and the international industry delegates.” The exhibition which glances at the history of Korean films at Berlin International Film festival will be open until Saturday February 28th. On the festival’s closing weekend, the center will be open from 10am to 7pm. After the festival closes on the 15th, the exhibition will be available during the weekdays from 12:30pm.

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February 9, 2015
'Ode to my Father' becomes second most-viewed Korean film
Source: The Korea Times ‘Ode to my Father' took the number two spot on the list of most-watched Korean films, as it surpassed 13 million in ticket sales, Saturday. / Korea Times file
Director Youn Je-kyoun's ‘Ode to my Father' took the number two spot on the list of most-watched Korean films, as it surpassed 13 million in ticket sales, Saturday.
It made an accumulated 13,023,664 in ticket sales as 89,809 people viewed it at 489 theaters across the nation that day, according to the Korea Film Council, Sunday. The milestone comes 53 days after the film's release in mid-December.
The sales figure surpasses that of ‘The Host,' which was previously number two in ranking with 13,010,000 viewers.
The Korean film that attracted the most viewers so far is ‘Roaring Currents' released last year and had 17,610,000 in ticket sales.
Ode to my Father ranks third in number of viewers when foreign films released here are taken into account. ‘Avatar' is in second place with 13,620,000 viewers.
Ode to my Father is still playing at some 500 theaters, eight weeks into its release, generating speculation that it could surpass Avatar's record.
The film centers on the life of a man played by Hwang Jung-min, who sacrifices his dreams as the main breadwinner for his family through the 1950s to the present. It was selected to be screened in the Panorama section of the 2015 Berlin International Film Festival that kicked off Feb.5 and runs through Feb. 15.

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February 10, 2015

Korean Weepie Screened at Berlin Film Fest
Source: The Chosun Ilbo

"Ode to My Father" was screened on Sunday in the Panorama section of the Berlin International Film Festiva, which wraps up this weekend.
The weepie, which has broken all records in Korea, portrays a man's sacrifices for his family throughout the vertex of Korea's modern history.
The 273 seats of the Zoo Palast, the screening venue, were fully occupied. Of the around 60 ethnic Korean spectators, 20 were first-generation immigrants whose experiences are portrayed in the movie.2015021001734_0.jpg
Kim Yun-jin (third from right), the star of "Ode to My Father," and director Yoon Je-kyoon meet former Korean nurses dispatched to Germany in the 1960s, after a screening at the Berlin International Film Festival on Sunday.
Director Yoon Je-kyoon and actress Kim Yun-jin met the older expats after the screening.
The tearjerker is also scheduled for a special screening near Washington on Wednesday.

Too bad HJM was not able to attend the Berlinale

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65thBerlinale.jpgFebruary 10, 2015
[65th Berlinale Special Report] ODE TO MY FATHER Screening Invites Miners and NursesFirst Screening in Berlin Brings Waves of Tears

by NA Won-jung /  KOFIC  TbBzMkZkAIHCFAOCHZMN.jpg
A film that joined the ten million admissions club this year and recently snatched the 2nd spot in the all time box office, Ode to My Father looks at the difficult lives of the recent past. The film which deals with fatherly love also induced the tears of the Berlin International Film Festival audiences. Programmed at the 65 Berlinale in the Panorama section, the screening invited 20 special Korean guests who have worked as real miners and nurses in the region just like the characters in the film. The screening took place at the Zoo Palast. The Zoo Palast is the official festival screening venue which also housed Win Wenders’ Every Thing Will Be Fine and Robert Pattinson and Dane DeHaan led Life. The approximately 1000 seats in the theater was fully filled after the doors opened at 6:30pm. KIM Dong-ho, Chairman of Presidential Committee for Cultural Enrichment, Busan International Film Festival’s Vice Festival Director JEON Yang-jun, as well as Korean Film Council, Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, and Korean Cultural Center in Berlin were in attendance. “Just like its title, Ode to My Father is a film made for my father,” said director JK YOUN as he introduced the screening. When main characters Duk-soo (HWANG Jung-min) and Young-ja (KIM Yun-jin) looks down at the cityscape of Busan, Korean audiences were already absorbed into the film while looking at their long-missed motherland. When Duk-soo’s family become separated during the Korean war, the audiences expressed their discontent by clicking their tongues. Soon, they started to murmer in empathy when Duk-soo chooses to move to Germany to take up the mining job. The audience grew with Duk-soo through the film, and the crowd laughed out loud and shed tears throughout the cultural and historical events. VyBcCejNryjWxerSUaEc.jpg
It seemed like the German audiences had a chance to learn the history of Korea that was unfamiliar. In the scene where Duk-soo barely holds onto his breath after being stuck in the coal mine, a female audience grabbed for her handkerchief. While at Duk-soo’s wedding, his friends hit the bottom of Duk-soo’s foot until they get what they wanted. This traditional event is very culture-specific, but even the audiences that didn’t know much about Korean culture bursted out laughing at Young-ja’s awkward song. Ending credits rolled and a German audience in her twenties had red eyes. “It’s a heavy story but the way the drama was intertwined within the history was good,” she said. Another audience commented, “I don’t know much about history, but losing one’s family and having that guilt overpower your life led him to sacrifice himself and that was something I could related to.” He added, “because I knew about the miners and the nurses from that period in Germany, I was attracted to their story. I wish I knew more about the references to historical figures as I didn’t catch anyone else except for Hyundai motors.” JK YOUN and KIM Yun-jin came up on stage for the Q&A and many praised KIM for her German. YOUN said, “the modern Korea was thanks to the sacrifice of our parents’ generation and I wanted to tell that story to the younger generation.” YOUN then followed up with a discussion of his film for about ten minutes. Although it was more of a presentation than a Q&A, there was no doubt that the film’s fatherly love crossed the border from Korea to globally. The screening of the film will also take place on February 9th, 10th, and the 14th in a total of four screenings at the festival. PPWmaNPguOIFKjDOmcxj.jpg
Berlin Local Media Claim, “Korean History Learned Through ODE TO MY FATHER” Still making new records after becoming second on the all-time domestic box office chart, Ode to My Father also moved the hearts of people half way around the globe. Invited to the 65th Berlin International Film Festival’s Panorama Section, the film held its official press conference on February 8th. JK YOUN and actress KIM Yun-jin was in attendance to answer questions not only about the film but also about Korean history. After a thorough explanation from director YOUN on the importance of the International Market and the conditions in 1960s Korea, actress KIM Yun-jin threw a light joke that changed the mood of the conference. After debuting in the film industry through My Boss, My Hero (2001), this is YOUN’s first invitation to an international film festival. When asked about how he felt, he answered in short, “it’s an honor for the family.” Actress KIM said, “This is also my first film festival so it holds a special place in my heart...it’s especially an honor to show a film about the pains of a nation’s division in Germany, since it was also once a separated nation.” One African journalist commented, “I didn’t know much about Korean history before, but I finally came to understand a little through Ode to My Father.” Continuing on, “the 60s Europe was overpowered by the three big nations and the pain that went through that period is something I can also relate to. Especially the female characters like Duk-soo’s mother and Young-ja were memorable.” To this, YOUN added, “I’m thankful to KIM for her work...she often played strong roles before, but once you get to know her, she’s very feminine and also funny. She was the perfect actress to be the person that begs the Germans to help Duk-soo when he gets stuck in the mines. Also, she proved herself that she’s fitting for a romantic comedy role as well.” After working in Hollywood through Lost and Mistresses, KIM Yun-jin was asked about her experience in jumping from huge American productions to smaller Korean films. KIM said, “Ode to My Father is a big budget film made in Korea...but the size of the project doesn’t matter to me. The job of the actor is to throw questions to the audiences and introduce them to a new story. Film or a TV series, production costs don’t matter.” One local journalist said, “I didn’t get a chance to watch Ode to My Father yet but I heard the press conference was successful...I thought it would be a foreign subject for me but with the positive response from the conference, I started to have interest. Just looking at the history of a nation’s division, this is a film German audiences should watch.”

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February 11, 2015
'Ode to My Father' grosses over $2 million in North America
The Korea Herald
"Ode to My Father," a South Korean box-office hit, grossed more than $2 million in ticket sales in just five weeks of screening in North America, according to the film's distributor on Tuesday.  The movie, which tells the story of an ordinary father who sacrificed himself to support his family through the country's turbulent modern history since the 1950-53 Korean War, topped the $2 million mark on Monday, the U.S. arm of CJ Entertainment & Media said.  The film is so far the fourth-highest grossing South Korean movie in North America after "The Admiral: Roaring Currents," "Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter... and Spring," and "The Host."  Screening the film in North America are 18 theaters in Los Angeles, New York, New Jersey, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Toronto and Vancouver. In South Korea, the movie surpassed the 10 million viewer mark in less than a month since its Dec. 17 opening. It is the 14th film ever to attract 10 million viewers at the local box office. (Yonhap)

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February 16, 2015
'Ode to My Father' Passes 'Avatar' on All-Time Box-Office List
Source: The Chosun Ilbo
"Ode to My Father" has become the second-most-successful film ever released in Korea, trailing only "Roaring Currents," which attracted 17.61 million viewers last year.
The weepie drew over 49,000 moviegoers at 418 cinemas across the country on Saturday alone, bringing total ticket sales so far to 13.31 million and taking the film past James Cameron's "Avatar" (13.30 million) in the all-time box-office rankings. 
The film, which portrays a man's sacrifices for his family as Korea's tumultuous modern history unfolds, was screened at the Berlin International Film Festival earlier this month.

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February 21, 2015
Movie 'Ode To My Father' becomes the 2nd most successful film of Korean Box Office history Source: STARN News
Movie 'Ode To My Father' became the 2nd most successful film of Korean Box Office history.
According to Korea Film Council's recent database, movie 'Ode To My Father' became the 2nd most successful film of Korean Box Office history as of February 20th, reaching 13,811,287 viewers, and surpassing 'AVATAR,' which had attracted 13,624,328 viewers.
It has been 10 weeks since 'Ode To My Father' was officially released, but it has attracted 19,720,000 people just in one day on February 20th.
Currently, 'ROARING CURRENTS,' which had attracted 17,611,963 viewers, remains as the most successful film of Korean Box Office history, and many people are now focusing their attention to whether 'Ode To My Father' will be able to break the record of 'ROARING CURRENTS.' 
'Ode To My Father,' starring Hwang Jung Min, Kim Yoon Jin, and Oh Dal Soo, is a movie that depicts modern Korean history from the 1950s to the present day through the life of an ordinary man as he experiences events such as the Hungnam Evacuation of 1951 during the Korean War, the government's decision to dispatch nurses and miners to Germany in the 1960s, and the Vietnam War (from Wikipedia). 
Meanwhile, 'Ode To My Father,' which broke the highest opening score of Korean film history, is currently being played at every movie theaters in Korea.
/Reporting by Lee Mi-Ji en@starnnews.com

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February 21, 2015

“Ode to My Father” Edges “Avatar” and Becomes Second Most-Watched Movie in Korean Box Office Historyhttp://www.soompi.com/2015/02/21/ode-to-my-father-edges-avatar-and-becomes-second-most-watched-movie-in-korean-box-office-history/

The movie “Ode to My Father” has broken the record set by “Avatar” (2009) and has taken the second place spot on Korea’s box office rankings.
On February 20, its 66th day since opening, “Ode to My Father” hit 13,811,287 viewers, putting it ahead of the most popular foreign movie in Korea, “Avatar.” “Avatar” had 13,624,328 viewers, and had been second place on Korea’s all-time box office rankings.
In just one day on February 20, which was part of the Lunar New Year holidays, “Ode to My Father” gained 190,072 viewers. It is now in its 10th week since opening, but is still near the top of the box office.
“Ode to My Father” now looks forward to breaking 14 million viewers for the first time since “The Admiral: Roaring Currents” (2014), and for the second time ever.

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February 23, 2015
Ramyeon in Korean Films
by KIM Hyeong-seok(Film Critic) / KOFIC  ‘Ramen’ was first invented in Japan in the 19th century. Then in 1958, Nissin Food Products Co., Ltd. invented instant noodles. The noodles landed in Korea in the 1960s and it was the beginning of the Korean Ramyeon. It sharply adapted Korean characteristics and the annual consumption of instant noodles per capita in Korea grew exponentially, overpowering that in Japan and any other nation (74.1/year). Cheap, yummy and quick to serve, Ramyeon is an everyday food in Korea even though some warn that it is not good for your health. Naturally, we can see Ramyeon very often in Korean films.
AtYnGVmVTSVyTIAWjoNg.jpgOne of the best ramyeon scenes is in One Fine Spring Day (2001), directed by HUR Jin-ho. Eun-su says (LEE Young-ae), “Do you want to eat Ramyeon?” and this quote is often recited as a pick-up line. It can be translated to “Do you want to sleep with me?” to the man she was with. Later, Sang-woo (YOO Ji-tae) experiences love pains. After he breaks up with Eun-su, he eats ramyeon by himself on a rainy night to relieve the sadness. At that time, his father leaves him a bottle of soju (Korean distilled liquor) without a word. Later on, HUR Jin-ho directed April Snow (2005) and Happiness (2007) to complete the so-called ‘Ramyeon Trilogy’. Seo-yeong (SON Ye-jin) relieves a hangover with a cup of noodles in April Snow and Yeong-su (HWANG Jung-min) hides and eats ramyeon at a sanatorium in Happiness.
Probably influenced by HUR Jin-ho, RYU Jang-ha, who was the assistant director of One Fine Spring Day, inserted an impressive ramyeon scene in his debut film Spring Time (2004). Hyeon-woo (CHOI Min-shik) goes to a remote coal-mining town to teach a school band. There he lives solely on ramyeon as a lazy man. He doesn’t even put noodles in a bowl but gobbles them down from the pot, splashing soup all over and making lots of noise. Jae-il (LEE Jae-eung), a kid living in the town helps him with a great appetite when eating ramyeon. What is interesting about LEE Jae-eung is that this was not his only role to devour ramyeon. A similar scene can be found in My Teacher, Mr. Kim (2003). Teacher KIM Bong-du (CHA Seung-won) is transferred from the city to a mountain village in Gangwon province. When he leaves leftover ramyeon, So-seok (LEE Jae-eung) finishes it no matter how much the teacher scolds him. Another film where a grown-up and a child share ramyeon is Cracked Eggs And Noodles (2005). Dae-gyu (IM Chang-jung) and In-gwon (LEE In-seong) paired up as traveling companions by coincidence cook ramyeon at a shabby room. While cooking, In-gwon makes up a song with lyrics about the most conventional ramyeon recipe among Koreans.
chScjgORjVlxcZltnhgL.jpgIt would be a mistake to leave off the eating master HA Jung-woo when talking about ramyeon scenes. He gobbles up so many different foods in The Yellow Sea (2010), one of which is a cup of noodles he bought at a convenient store late at night. He finishes the ramyeon in a flash and eats a sausage walking out of the store. There are impressive ramyeon scenes at convenient stores in Out to the World (1994) and Attack The Gas Station (1999) as well. But Ramyeon looked the most delicious in Nowhere To Hide (1999). Detective Woo (PARK Joong-hoon) locked up Jjang-gu (PARK Sang-myun) in his house. Interestingly enough, there is a strange feeling of solidarity between the cop and the criminal only when they’re eating ramyeon. The noodles look yummier in a crushed pot. They empty the pot without leaving a single drop.
A man in Le Grand Chef (2007) cannot forget the taste of ramyeon he ate one day in the past. WOO Jung-geo (KIM Sang-ho) tries various different ways to reproduce the taste of ramyeon he ate in the army, but he never achieves it. In the end, he learns the lesson that ramyeon tastes the best when the consumer is starving. Actor KIM Sang-ho actually ran a ramyeon restaurant in the past. Maybe because of that, he cooks ramyeon that look really good throughout the film.
What was the saddest ramyeon scene, then? It is perhaps the last scene of The Show Must Go On (2007). Gangster In-gu (SONG Kang-ho) finally realizes his long-cherished dream of having a pastoral house, but he ends up living alone while the rest of his family lives abroad. He watches TV sitting alone at a large empty house while a video clip of his happy wife and daughter runs on the TV monitor. He sheds tears missing his family and throws the noodles. The noodles and broken pieces of bowl scatter around on the floor. Then he collects them in a plastic bag. Next to him are just the remains of the splattered noodles.

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March 2, 2015
February a Lame Month for Korean Films
Source: The Chosun Ilbo
Korean films performed badly in February. Four domestically produced films made it into the top 10 at the box office here but drew a mere 7.46 million cinemagoers, the worst record for the month in five years. 
The performance is even worse when compared to January, when six Korean films attracted 13.23 million moviegoers.
Rivalry with foreign films was not the reason as they were no huge hits either in February. According to the Korean Film Council, a total of 6.56 million people watched the six foreign films in the top 10 in February, including "Kingsman: The Secret Service" (3.14 million), "Big Hero 6" (1.29 million), and "The Imitations Game" (1.13 million).
The poor performance despite the five-day Lunar New Year can be attributed largely to the fact that the Korean films released in February such as "Gangnam Blues," "Chronicle of a Blood Merchant" and "C'est Si Bon" simply fell short of audiences' expectations.
Film critic Jeon Chan-il said recent hit movies like "Roaring Currents" and "Ode to My Father" all bridged generation gaps. "The market has grown and become more diverse, but there is now a slimmer chance of mega-blockbusters," he added.

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March 6, 2015
2015 Chunsa Film Art Nominations AnnouncedA HARD DAY Nominated in Four Categories by June Kim / KOFIC The Chunsa Film Art Awards is a domestically run event organized by the Korean Film Directors’ Association. It will be having its 19th edition on March 18th, at 6pm in the Seoul Press Center. The Chunsa Film Art Awards had paused operations after 2010 and this will be their first ceremony in four years. The event was first founded in 1937 to commemorate director NA Wun-kyu. The awards categories include the Grand Prix (Best Director), Screenplay Award, Technical Award, Actor Award, Actress Award and Special Jury Award (New Director). Few films were nominated in multiple categories, with A Hard Day leading the pack. The film was nominated for the Grand Prix for director KIM Seong-hun, as well as the Screenplay, Actor and Technical prizes. Roaring Currents is a close second with three nominations in the Grand Prix, Actor and Technical sections. Ode to My Father, Haemoo, A Girl at My Door, Han Gong-ju and KUNDO: Age of the Rampant all have two nominations each. From March 9th to the 15th, the jury members of the Chunsa Film Art Awards will screen the works until the Awards take place on March 18th. Full list of nominations is listed below: Grand PrixHow to Steal a Dog – KIM Sung-hoGyeong-ju – ZHANG LuA Hard Day - KIM Seong-hunRoaring Currents – KIM Han-minHill of Freedom – HONG Sangsoo ScreenplayOde to My Father – PARK Su-jinA Hard Day- KIM Seong-hunC’est Si Bon – KIM Hyun-seokThe Whistleblower – LEE Chun-hyeongCart – KIM Kyung-chan ActorOde to My Father – HWANG Jung-minKUNDO: Age of the Rampant – HA Jung-wooA Hard Day – LEE Sun-kyunRoaring Currents – CHOI Min-shikDetective K: Secret of the Lost Island – OH Dal-su ActressA Girl at My Door – BAE Doo-naCart – YUM Jung-ahHan Gong-ju – CHUN Woo-heeHaemoo – HAN Ye-ri TechnicalKUNDO: Age of the RampantA Hard DayRoaring CurrentsThe Fatal EncounterHaemooThe Pirates New Director10 Minutes – LEE Yong-seungSet Me Free – KIM Tae-yongA Girl at My Door – July JUNGThe King of Jokgu – Woo Moon-giHan Gong-ju – LEE Su-jin

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March 15, 2015

FilMart: Korea’s Lotte Lines Up Slate of Period Movies

Sonia Kil l Variety.com

SEOUL — Four period titles head the sales slate of Lotte Entertainment, South Korea’s second largest vertically integrated film conglomerate, going in to next week’s Hong Kong FilMart.

Nostalgic trips down memory lane were big hits in Korea last year, with “Ode to My Father,” “Roaring Currents” and Lotte’s “The Pirates” all doing huge box office business.

Seoul during the Japanese imperial period is the setting for “The Silenced,” a thriller set in a mysterious sanatorium. Directed by Lee Hae-young (“Like a Virgin”), the picture stars Park Bo-young (“A Werewolf Boy”) and Uhm Ji-won (“Hope”). It is set for release in Korea in June.

The reign of tyrannical king Yeonsan-gun is the backdrop for erotic political drama “The Treacherous.” The film is directed by Min Kyu-dong (“All About My Wife”) and stars Ju Ji-hoon, who previously worked with the director on “Antique.” Lotte has all rights except Europe, whose territories are handled by Finecut.

Lee Byung-hun (“Terminator: Genisys”), Cannes-winning actress Jeon Do-yeon (“Way Back Home”) and Kim Go-eun (“Eun-gyo”) star in “The Memories of the Sword,” a period action drama with a $10 million budget. Direction, under Park Heung-sik (“My Mother the Mermaid”), began in February 2014.

“The Long Way Home,” a big-budget film set during the Korean War in 1953, is the feature directorial debut of screenwriter Chun Sung-il (“The Pirates”). The picture stars veteran actor Sol Kyung-gu (“Cold Eyes”) and rising star Yeo Jin-goo (“Hwayi: A Monster Boy”).

Lotte skipped the European Film market in Berlin, and will instead open up sales on the new titles at FilMart.

Among its completed titles are 2014 Locarno-winning indie “A Fresh Start,” which will be released in Korea this year, and 2015 Berlinale’s Forum title “End of Winter,” which will also screen at this month’s Hong Kong International Film Festival.
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