Im Kwon-taek: In search of perfection

As the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon approach, LKL is finally spurred to write up some archive notes of interviews and Q&A’s with the director of their Opening Ceremony… “Why are you torturing me?” was Im Kwon-taek’s heartfelt cry when attending a screening of one of his films from the 1960s at a 70-film retrospective […]

Gilsotteum to screen at the KCC

Of the 15 or so Im Kwon-taek films I’ve managed to see so far, Gilsotteum is my favourite. It caught me by surprise at the retrospective last year, and I’ll certainly be trying to get to the screening this coming Thursday: Gilsotteum (1985) 7pm, 1 August 2013 Director: IM Kwon-Taek Cast: Kim Ji-mi, Shin Seong-il […]

Im Kwon-taek and the wounds of the Korean War

The Im Kwon Taek retrospective has given us all a chance to catch up on some of the films of the master that we haven’t seen before, rounding out our picture of Korea’s national director. Im is probably best known nowadays for his films which highlight some of the unique aspects of Korea’s cultural heritage: […]

2010: a bumper year for Korean film?

Not so long ago, the Korean film industry seemed to be in the doldrums. Darcy, Twitch and others were sounding notes of gloom that Korean cinema had lost its way. But then things picked up again, with blockbusters such as Haeundai, and new indie films such as Breathless making the headlines and bringing in the […]

Come, Come, Come Upwards at the KCC

To coincide with their exhibition of Buddhist art opening this week, the KCC’s film screenings this month have a Buddhist theme. First, on Thursday this week, 8 April, is Im Kwon-taek’s Come, Come, Come Upwards (아제 아제 바라아제) Synopsis: A high school girl student Soon-nyeo’s father, Buddhist monk Yun Bong, dies. The paternal pain is […]

LKL’s top 10 K-films of the noughties

Mark Russell led the way with his fascinating list of films of the decade – in which the biggest shock was that there was no Park Chan-wook. GI Korea also has a list, which redresses the balance somewhat. So here is mine. Over the years I’ve been reasonably diligent in giving marks out of 10 […]

Chihwaseon screens at the KCC

The next screening at the KCC, on Thursday 25 September, is Chihwaseon (2002), Im Kwon-taek’s bio-pic of one of Korea’s most famous painters, Jang Seung-eop, also known as Owon. The film features two of Korea’s most well-known actors, Choi Min-sik as Owon and Ahn Sung-ki as his patron Kim Byung-moon. Synopsis: During the 1850s, KIM […]

Im Kwon-taek shines at KCC

Matthew Jackson’s impressions from last Thursday’s screening of “Beyond the Years” at the Korean Cultural Centre There is definitely something extra that you get out of going to see a film in the company of people that you do not necessarily know, in surroundings that are not quite the same as any other you are […]

Beyond the Years at the KCC

The KCC’s second monthly film screening will be Im Kwon-taek’s Beyond the Years (천년학). Im’s 100th film, it’s a sequel to his breakthrough movie from the early 1990s, Sopyonje. Here’s the KCC’s press release: KOREAN CULTURAL CENTRE UK, TRAFALGAR SQUARE Thursday, March 27th 2008, 7:00 PM As part of the Korean Film Night programme, and […]