South Korean Film Scores and Ease of Distribution – Part 4 (Asia Extreme and Westernisation)

Part 1. Part 2. Part 3. Asia Extreme and the Westernisation of South Korean Film Music. The most popular avenue for South Korean cinema to enter the West, outside of the art-house festival circuit, is in the form that has loosely been dubbed “Asia Extreme”.  This isn’t just South Korean film but also Japanese cinema as well as a number of others.  The sub-genre is … Continue reading South Korean Film Scores and Ease of Distribution – Part 4 (Asia Extreme and Westernisation)

Chi-hwa-seon (2002) – Im Kwon-Taek.

The preservation and evolution of South Korean cultural traditions became the dominant focus of Im Kwon-Taek’s films after the ease of censorship in a change of government regime.  A number of his post-genre cinema began to address this though the real cultural reactions can be found in later work which can effectively be called post-Cannes; meaning the cinema he made during his currently slow but … Continue reading Chi-hwa-seon (2002) – Im Kwon-Taek.

South Korean Film Music and Ease of Distribution – Part 1 (Tradition vs. Globalisation).

Tradition vs. Globalisation: The Relationships between South Korean Film Music and Its Ease of Consumption and Distribution. Introduction  The Effect Of Globalisation Pressure On South Korean Cinema. “The core problem is no doubt that most of us in the West know little or nothing of Korea’s modern history.  It’s impossible to understand Korea’s artists without knowing the context in which they worked…” (Rayns, 2012, p.40). … Continue reading South Korean Film Music and Ease of Distribution – Part 1 (Tradition vs. Globalisation).

Festival (1996) and the Acceptance of Loss – Im Kwon-Taek.

Celebrating loss can be a difficult task even for the more optimistic of personas.  The idea of someone being physically and emotionally lost is not a pleasant experience which, at best can provide some cathartic character building in between the tears and complete incomprehension as to what exactly it means to live or die.  It’s a theme familiar in many filmmaker’s auteur driven, thematic catalogues, … Continue reading Festival (1996) and the Acceptance of Loss – Im Kwon-Taek.

Aguirre, The Wrath of God – Werner Herzog (1972)

Werner Herzog is a dangerous director.  Not content with simply make believe, he appears to enjoy a masochistic relationship with actually putting himself through his own film’s narratives and challenges.  Perhaps he feels that it yields the best results but it’s obvious when watching any of his films that more blood, sweat and tears have gone into making them than pretty much any other filmmaker … Continue reading Aguirre, The Wrath of God – Werner Herzog (1972)

Winter Light – Ingmar Bergman (1963)

A dark vein of sorrow flows through many films by Swedish auteur Ingmar Bergman.  With his constant obsession with death, whether it be in the physical sense of the metaphorical death of emotion or belief, his films often pack a punch way ahead of their times.  In his so-called “Faith trilogy”, Bergman assesses the death of things dearest to the human psyche such as religion, … Continue reading Winter Light – Ingmar Bergman (1963)

Onibaba – Kaneto Shindo (1964)

Last week saw the passing away of one of Japan’s greatest and most forward thinking directors to appear in the country’s golden age of cinema.  At the age of 100 Kaneto Shindo was still going strong having only made his last film in 2010 as well as his much overdue retrospective starting at BFI Southbank being mere days later, it seems his life was one … Continue reading Onibaba – Kaneto Shindo (1964)

Pickpocket – Robert Bresson (1959)

One of the more subtle directors to come from outside of the French New Wave pool, Robert Bresson is a director more concerned with issues and ideas than the visual experimentation that obsessed Godard or Truffaut.  His 1959 film, Pickpocket, also shies away from the overtly political side of Alan Resnais and instead adopts an approach of social comment, which instantly seems refreshing. Pickpocket follows the Crime and … Continue reading Pickpocket – Robert Bresson (1959)

Kwaidan – Masaki Kobayashi – (1964)

Thanks to films like Nakata’s Ringu and Shimizu’s Ju-On (The Grudge), Japanese horror is part of the popular pantheon of horrific cinema.  Many ghost films of the West borrow heavily from these two films but because of their enormous success, it seems that Kaiden (Japanese ghost stories) of the past are often overlooked for their more thrillingly modern counterparts. Looking past this injustice, it can be stated that Masaki … Continue reading Kwaidan – Masaki Kobayashi – (1964)

Man With A Movie Camera – Dziga Vertov (1929)

With the exception of Sergei Eisenstein’s Battleship Potemkin, which is often reserved for the film students to endlessly moan about, Russian cinema seems like a wonderfully well-kept secret that defies trends and builds new ones of its own.  Dziga Vertov’s 1929 film Man With a Movie Camera is the perfect example of this and though it may not perhaps be the most famous film ever made, its influence … Continue reading Man With A Movie Camera – Dziga Vertov (1929)