Why I Like Korean Films
My love affair with Korean films begun in 2010 with Chagn Dong Lee’s Poetry, a film about a sixty something year old woman who finds comfort in a poetry class.
It is also a film about the poetry of cinema and it’s ability to allow us to find solance in the careful construction of image, words and the space between words. It’s a way of communicating that Korean writers and directors excel at.
Recently I also saw Jeon Go- woon’s Microhabitat, with the wonderful Esom in the main roll, and was taken on another poetic walk through alienation and liberation in a way that is surprising and empathetic.
In all these films, I also mention Bong Joon-ho and Jin-won Han’s 2019 Palme d’Or winner Parasite; there is a intimate, almost absolutist relationship to cruelty. It rumbles under the poetry of all of these pieces and elevates their social realism to something else.
They makes you stand, stare and wish / hope for that other thing that poetry always offers. That thing that film, when it does it, can do really well.