The third presentation in the Center for Korean Studies fall 2011 film series is director Lee Man-heeâ€™s A Day Off (íœ´ì¼; also known as Holiday), a film suppressed by censors after its production in 1968 and not shown publicly until its rediscovery and exhibition by the Korean Film Archive in 2005.
A Day Off illustrates the suffocating and distorted atmosphere of Korean society in the 1960s through portrayal of a tragic Sunday spent by a pair of poor lovers. The young man knows the woman is pregnant and steals money from a friend to pay for an abortion. He checks her into a hospital and, depressed, goes to a bar, where he meets a woman and briefly escapes from reality. When he returns to the hospital, he finds his lover has died, and he wanders the night streets in agony.
Leeâ€™s film has been called a â€œrare gem of modern cinema that transcends timeâ€ and is said to reflect a surprisingly modern artistic sensibility. It is also cited for its effective use of extreme angles and montage.
A Day Off will be screened Tuesday, October 4, in the Center for Korean Studies auditorium beginning at 6:30 p.m. The CKS Korean Film Series is free and open to the public and is supported by the Timothy and Miriam Wee Memorial Fund at the Center for Korean Studies. For further information, contact the Center at (808) 956‑7041.