Hwa-ryeo-han-hyoo-ga (2007)

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Hwa-ryeo-han-hyoo-ga: Directed by Ji-hoon Kim. With Kim Sang-kyung, Yo-won Lee, Sung-Ki Ahn, Kwon Tae-won. The story of events leading up to the 1980 Gwangju massacre in South Korea when thousands of students and protesters were killed by armed troops during an anti-government demonstration.

“In the 80u0026#39;s South Korean films as well as TV dramas were almost identically typical in their monotonous plots, stereotyped characters and lack of variety. True, those were the dark ages–ruled by army generals with not much freedom of speech or media, etc. However, interestingly enough, this movie, in the 21st century democracy, attempted to depict an unforgettable (and unforgivable) historical event of 1980 with the very 1980 methods: monotonous, stereotyped and boring… How typical! Unbelievable! It could have been (and indeed shouldu0026#39;ve been) a lot greater movie if it had been for a better director, a better scriptwriter (whoever couldu0026#39;ve done a lot more research than those involved in this failure) because it–the Kwangju Massacre–was one of the most important civil uprisings in the countryu0026#39;s modern history.u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eI was a kid when it happened (fortunately I was living abroad) and I remember watching the news coverage on TV. I watched this movie in a theater in Seoul, and I saw quite a few young students walking out within the first 40-50 minutes. The only reason I sat through the movie was I u0026quot;knewu0026quot; about this historical event. If I hadnu0026#39;t known at all, I wouldnu0026#39;t have even bothered to sit still for 30 minutes. I really wished I could either cry or laugh during the movie; I just couldnu0026#39;t sympathize with any part.u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eMany Korean filmmakers–unlike those who made u0026quot;Tae Guk Giu0026quot; for example–are very capable of ruining great stories…the very true stories given to them on a silver platter so that they didnu0026#39;t have to agonize themselves over creating a great fiction in the first place.u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eI give this movie 5 stars only because it is based on a true story.”


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