Showing posts with label lee dae-hee. Show all posts
Showing posts with label lee dae-hee. Show all posts

Monday, January 21, 2013

Padak (파닥파닥, Padak Padak) 2012

(by Rex Baylon)

Although the United States and Japan have a far more illustrious history when it comes to producing animated features, South Korea has been the industry’s worst kept secret for many decades. At first, merely an outsource center for foreign filmmakers who needed a platoon of talented but cheap inkers and illustrators, this long overshadowed country has in the past few years emerged as a real contender within the animation field. And even though Korea hasn’t produced an animation studio with a ready-made and recognizable style like Pixar in America or Ghibli in Japan this situation has allowed many young animators to forge ahead and create their own unique works, regardless of global economic interests.

In 2011 alone, Yeun Sang-ho’s bleak revenge drama King of Pigs and popular children’s picture Leafie, A Hen into the Wild were released and both attained a level of unexpected success. The former as a searing indictment of school bullying became a critical darling on the festival circuit while the latter became South Korea’s most financially successful animated feature, raking in 2.2 million ticket sales. Unlike the American and Japanese markets that produce content to be exported and exploited by foreign interests these two films were created primarily for Korean audiences with no real expectations that they could travel outside their country of origin. And though a lot of the domestic output by Korean animators is influenced a great deal by the West and Japan their work does have an indelible personal stamp to it. Thus the quality of the animation being released is not only equal to those produced in America or Asia but the films themselves are still inarguably Korean.