I think I just don’t get Park Kyung-ni

Having failed to make much headway with Park Kyung-ni’s T’oji / Land, I thought I might give her Curse of Kim’s Daughters a try, in preparation for a re-watch of Yu Hyun-mok’s film adaptation of the novel. I didn’t particularly enjoy the movie the first time I saw it. But then, so far I haven’t […]

Festival Film Review: This Road Called Life

Following on from the success of their feature-length animation Green Days, Studio MWP worked with Korean TV broadcaster EBS to produce a trio of short films which adapt three familiar short stories which are studied by most Koreans in high school: Yi Hyo-seok’s Buckwheat Season, Kim Yu-jeong’s Spring, Spring, and A Lucky Day by Hyun […]

Festival Film Review: Hwajang / Revivre

Well, I was right. Ahn Sung-ki confessed in the Q+A which followed the screening of Hwajang that one of his most difficult tasks in portraying Oh Sang-moo, a senior executive in a cosmetics company, was to project certain aspects of being old – of being blocked inside because of the swollen prostate, of being more […]

Bringing Kim Hoon’s Hwajang to the big screen: How to act a swollen prostate?

Im Kwon-taek set himself quite a challenge when he decided to make a movie of Kim Hoon’s Hwajang. It is a dense, concentrated and rich piece of writing – I hesitate to say “short story”, because really there’s not much narrative flow. Instead, there’s well-balanced contrast; there’s inner thoughts and emotions; there are the human […]

LBF event, 8 Apr 7pm: Toon Talk with Yoon Tae-ho

The third of six evening events during London Book Fair week, which unfortunately overlaps with a session with Yi Mun-yol at the British Library. Toon Talk: Webtoons, A New Trend in Korean Digital Comics 8 April, 19.00-20.00 A special talk with Korean webtoon writer, Yoon Tae-ho, famous for his unique works such as Moss, later […]

LBF event 1 Apr: Books on Screen — Moss

The fourth of the KCC’s Korean Literature on Screen events. LKL’s review of the film can be found here. As usual, pre-registration is required via the KCC website. Moss 이끼, Kang Woo-suk, 2010 Tuesday 1 April 7pm, KCCUK Running time 163 mins Adapted from a popular internet cartoon, Ryu Hae-guk investigates the mysterious death of […]

Book Review: Hwang Sunmi — The Hen who Dreamed she could Fly

Hwang Sun-mi: The Hen who dreamed she could fly Translated by Kim Chi-young; illustrations by Nomoco Oneworld Publications, 2014, 124pp First published as 마당을 나온 암탉, 2000 A brief fable that can delight children and adults alike, the story touches on themes of motherly love, discrimination, otherness, and belonging, while also touching on and accepting […]

Book Review: Gong Ji-young — Our Happy Time

Gong Ji-young: Our Happy Time Translated by Sora Kim-Russell Short Books, 2014, 269pp. Originally published as 우리들의 행복한 시간, 2005 Our Happy Time is not the obvious title for a novel in which a three-times attempted suicide goes reluctantly to visit a convicted murderer awaiting execution on death row. But strangely, as the relationship between […]