Review: Kokdu – a story of guardian angels

The death of a grandmother in remote, rural Jindo becomes dramatically intertwined with a stage performance by dancers, court and folk musicians from the National Gugak Centre as they portray the journey of a soul in the afterlife. The unauthorised purchase of a Jindo puppy by her two grandchildren gets them entangled in the drama […]

Brief review: Crossroads of Youth

Crossroads of Youth, Korea’s earliest surviving feature-length movie, was a great way to start the season of films from Korea’s colonial period. It is a season that could not have taken place 15 years ago, because these films have only recently come to light in the film archives of Beijing, Moscow and Tokyo. Crossroads of […]

Early Korean Cinema season at the BFI and KCC

Tickets for the Early Korean Cinema season at the BFI, which was announced as last year’s London korean Film festival came to an end, go on sale on 15 January. The organisers particularly direct our attention to two screenings: THU 7 FEB, 18:00 – OPENING SCREENING WITH LIVE PERFORMANCE + INTRO: Crossroads of Youth 청춘의 […]

Crossroads of Youth – a constantly-evolving performance of Korea’s earliest silent film

Crossroads of Youth is one of Korea’s earliest silent films, which would have at the time had narration by a byeonsa (the Korean equivalent of the Japanese benshi). The function of the byeonsa was to tell the story in the absence of diagetic dialogue (which in Western cinema was told through intertitles), in addition to […]