Korean Film Nights: In Transit

In a special collaboration with Bertha DocHouse and Birkbeck University, the KCCUK presents a journey into contemporary Korean documentary. Two of the screenings are online (free) and two at the Bertha Dochouse in Brunswick Square.

We’re particularly looking forward to the opportunity of seeing the second instalment of Kim Soyoung’s Exile trilogy, having caught the London premiere of the first instalment at King’s London a few years ago.

Korean Film Nights: In Transit

Korean Film Nights: In Transit

Korean Film Nights: In Transit addresses the continuously transforming public and private spaces of marginalised communities, which take on new meanings through different cultural viewpoints. These four carefully selected titles offer a meditation on spatial politics, exploring how they intersect with various personal narratives. Our programme will take place both at the Bertha DocHouse cinema and online, reflecting the current transient nature of cinema spaces.

Weekends

Dir: Lee Dong-ha (2016, 98mins)
Online for two days from 7:00 pm, Thursday 29 July 2021
Free | Register via Eventbrite

Weekends follows G-voice, the first Korean gay choir, founded in 2003. First-person accounts, video clips, live performances, footage of marches and exhibitions express the experience of being in G-voice.

The film links personal stories with the choir’s arc as the safeguard of a community. G-voice’s passionate struggles against discrimination are expressed through their music, but also through their relationship and professional choices. Weekends transmits a powerful sense of freedom, hope and the transformational powers of solidarity.

Lee Dong-ha’s first documentary feature is an uplifting, witty and honest film about community activism. Winner of the Panorama Audience Award at the Berlin International Film Festival (2016), in the film’s visual space the everyday joyously co-exists with the extraordinary, while the narrative rhythmically oscillates from heartbreak to triumph.

This online screening is accessible in the UK only, and will be available to watch at any time from 7pm (BST) on Thursday 29th July to 11:59pm (BST) Saturday 31st July. The film will have English language subtitles for all dialogue, but these are not hard-of-hearing subtitles.

The Sea of Itami Jun

Dir: Jung Da-woon (2019, 112mins)
Sunday 1 August 2021, 6pm
Bertha DocHouse Screen | Curzon Bloomsbury | The Brunswick | London WC1N 1AW
£5 | Book here

The Sea of Itami Jun

Carefully constructed as a map of memories, The Sea of Itami Jun profiles Itami Jun, a Japan-born Korean architect. Feeling foreign to both nations, he expresses his sense of displacement through his architectural work, merging Korean tradition with modernism, while sensitive to the nature around him.

With similar diligence and appreciation, director Jung Da-woon combines award-winning photography, architectural drafts and archival footage as she paints Itami Jun’s emotional landscape. His stoic approach to life and internal warmth radiates from the screen, leaving the audience in a state of awe.

Winner of the audience award at Jeju Film Festival 2019, The Sea of Itami Jun follows the life story of an architect who resembles a remote island between Korea and Japan, harmonizing the climate, culture, emotion and formative beauty of the two neighboring countries.

Sound of Nomad (+ recorded Q+A)

Dir Kim So-young (2016, 87mins)
Online for two days from 7:00 pm, Thursday 5 August 2021
Free | Register via Eventbrite

Sound of Nomad

Part of Korean director Kim So-young’s ‘Exiled’ triology, Sound of Nomad tells stories of exile and exclusion. It is an emotional journey that starts in 1937 with the deportation of thousands of the Korean inhabitants of East Russia (the Koryo people) to Kazakhstan.

The film not only looks to the past but is in conversation with the community as they navigate the complex transformative experience of exile in a post national world. Focusing on singers Bang Tamara and Lee Ham-deok, the documentary alternates between archival footage and participatory and reflexive interviews with Koryo communities.

Sound of Nomad established director Kim So-young as one of the most relevant and critically acclaimed contemporary Korean documentary filmmakers, a bold voice exploring an often overlooked but significant part of Korean history.

Accessible in the UK only, available to watch at any time between 7pm (BST) Thursday 5th August and 11:59pm (BST) Saturday 7 August.

Time to Read Poems

Dir: Lee Soojung (2016, 74mins)
Tuesday 10 August 2021, 6:00pm
Bertha DocHouse Screen | Curzon Bloomsbury | The Brunswick | London WC1N 1AW
£5 | Book here

Time to Read Poems

Hana, Sudeok, Taehyung, Jaechun and Hamamu; each tell us their stories, interweaving the personal with the social. Lee Soojung’s cinematic intervention is a collage of their testimonies on creativity, mental health, labour activism and gender politics. Personal narratives blend with Lee Soojung’s recollections of times and places of encounter, translating into poetic intersections. The film is a stunning, complex yet inviting poem of experience.

Time to Read Poems marks Lee Soojung as one of the important female directors in recent Korean cinema. Her nomadic look at urban landscapes combined with sensitive yet deeply evocative portraiture makes for a thought-provoking exploration of choices, dreams and existence.

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