Showing posts with label rain. Show all posts
Showing posts with label rain. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

R2B: Return to Base (R2B: 리턴투베이스) 2012

Following the disastrous performance of CJ’s high profile releases last year, such as Sector 7 and My Way, the assumption was that the company was going to rethink it’s approach to blockbusters by focussing more on mid-level projects. Perhaps this is the case but I suppose R2B: Return to Base was already in production at this stage so they just grit their teeth and got on with it. It certainly feels that way as this new late summer action film feels like it was thrown together. What was initially a remake of the classic Shin Sang-ok feature Red Muffler (1964) starring Rain, the king of K-pop, wound up as a half-assed attempt at emulating an enormously popular and kitschy 80s American classic.

Earlier this week we were all shocked to hear of Tony Scott’s suicide, one of Hollywood’s most dependable directors. He made many great action films over the last 20 years but he will most likely be remembered for Top Gun (1986), the film, which among other things, made Tom Cruise a superstar. Rain may have been voted Time’s Most Influential Person of the Year three years running by his adoring fans, but his screen presence pales in comparison. Love him or hate him (I consider myself among the former) there’s no denying Cruise’s charm. This is what made Top Gun such a hit and is part of the reason why R2B is D.O.A.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

The Shower (소나기, Sonagi) 1979

One thing that I’ve noticed time and again in Korean cinema, especially when I began to discover it many years ago, was the use of rain.  What struck me about it was its prevalence but most of all its impressive depiction on screen.  The first point is mostly due to the climate in Korea, which shares more with the wet climes of my native Ireland than Hollywood’s perpetually clear and balmy days.  The latter comes down to a keen appreciation on my part of the aesthetic and technical brilliance of the nation’s film industry.  Of course there’s also more to it than the above points, which are merely practical.

‘Pathetic fallacy’ is a term used to denote the attribution of human emotions to inanimate objects.  In poetry and literature, as well as in film, it typically references the metaphorical use of nature.  Rain is one of the most frequently used devices for pathetic fallacy used in art or media and in cinema it works particularly well due to its heavy physical presence and its potential to heighten the mise-en-scene through visual and aural means.  But in Korean films it has been brought to a new level as just about every important Korean work of the last 15 years has featured an important scene whose staging and emotional impact have been amplified by rainfall.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Korean Cinema News (08/01-08/07, 2011)

A large amount of trailers this week and lots of news to boot, including a number of box office milestones.


The Unjust Picks Up Award at Fantasia
Scribe Park Joon-hung won the best screenplay award for The Unjust at the close of the 2011 Fantasia International Film Festival which also featured a master class with award-winning director Ryoo Seung-wan. (, August 7, 2011)

South Korean Cinema Overview
Korean cinema is once again making waves on the international scene and Richard Gray briefly brings us through its evolution and where it currently stands. (Tresspass Magazine, August 7, 2011)

Fashion Trends in Ten Korean Films
An examination of ten korean films that display forward-thinking or versatile fashion sense. (, August 7, 2011)

Video Review of Terracotta Far East Film Festival
A video recap of this year's Terracotta Far East Film Festival which featured a number of Korean films and a special guest appearance by Breathless (2009) star Kim Khobbi. (, August 6, 2011)

The Rise of Korean B-Movie
With the recent polarization of big-budget and independent cinema in Korea, B-Movies are now also gaining favor. Invasion of Alien Bikini, which was shot for less than $5,000 is leading the fray. (Joong Ang Daily, August 5, 2011)

Rain and Richard Gere to Collaborate on Project
Rain met with Richard Gere last week and announced on Twitter that they would be collaborating on an upcoming project. The results will likely not be seen for over three years as Rain must complete his compulsory military service. (, August 5, 2011)

Leafie Breaks Animation Box Office Record
After attracting 500,000 spectators in 8 days, Leafie, A Hen Into the Wild is now officially the quickest selling animation in Korean history. (The Chosun Ilbo, August 4, 2011)

Sector 7 Bursts Out of the Gate
Summer blockbuster Sector 7 got off to a strong start with 230,000 viewers on its first day. It has benefited from the buzz of being the first Korean 3D action film. (, August 4, 2011)

Nicole Kidman Boards Park Chan-wook's Stoker
Park Chan-wook's hollywood debut Stoker is quickly assembling its high profile cast and the latest addition is screen siren Nicole Kidman. (, August 4, 2011)

Arirang Confirmed for TIFF
Kim Ki-duk's new film Arirang, which premiered at Cannes earlier this year, has been confirmed in the masters section of this year's Toronto International Film Festival. (indieWIRE, August 3, 2011)

Korean Indie Animation Fest to Present in Australia
In the lead to KOFFIA 2011, the Indie-Anifest will present a special showcase of independent animation from Korea on August 16th. (, August 3, 2011)

Normalization for Online Film Distribution Demanded by Chungmoro
On July 27, 108 companies and organizations, led by the Korean Film Council announced the Declaration for the Normalization for Online Film Distribution. The declaration calls for putting a stop to the illegal circulation of films online. (, August 2, 2011)

Hollywood DMZ Movie in Pre-Production
CJ has partnered with Di Bonaventura Pictures to produce a multi-million dollar blockbuster about Korea's De-Militarized Zone (DMZ). (, August 2, 2011)

New Casting Announcements for Stoker
More casting news for Park Chan-wook's Stoker as Alden Ehrenreich joins the feature. (Variety, August 1, 2011)

The Thieves Completes Location Shoot in Macau
Choi Dong-hoon's fourth feature has wrapped up its location filming in Macau. The Thieves, which stars Kim Yoon-seok, Gianna Jun, Kim Hye-soo, Lee Jeong-jae and Oh Dal-suis set to be released in the summer of 2012. (Film Business Asia, August 1, 2011)

Hollywood Studios Funding and Producing Asian Films
Recently, various Asian films have been partially funded or produced by Hollywood studios. They include Na Hong-jin's The Yellow Sea. (Wildgrounds, August 1, 2011)

Indian Marial Artist to Train in Korea
Salman Khan will be training in martial arts in Korea for his upcoming film Kick, which wil be shot on the peninsula. (, August 1, 2011)


PiFan Q&A for Invasion of Alien Bikini

Transcription of a Q&A session following a screening of Invasion of Alien Bikini at this year's PiFan. (Asian Media Wiki, August 1, 2011)


Lots of trailers this week for upcoming Korean films and various touring independent films.

Ghastly (clip, no dialogue) 

Winter Smells


Sector 7 Posts Cracks 1 Million in Opening Weekend
As expected Sector 7 dominated the box office with an opening of 1.154 million admissions. Quick and The Front Line dipped slightly from last week and are in great shape with 368,000 and 329,000 respectively. With 250,000 Leafie, A Hen Into the Wild is edging closer to its 1.5 million break-even point, currently stands at 880,000. Horror film Ghastly opened poorly with just over 50,000 while Sunny begins to wind up its run with 25,000 in its first week out of the top 10. (, August 7, 2011)

Korean Cinema News is a weekly feature which provides wide-ranging news coverage on Korean cinema, including but not limited to: features; festival news; interviews; industry news; trailers; posters; and box office. It appears every Wednesday morning (GMT+1) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at the Korean Box Office Update and the Weekly Review Round-upReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

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