The Center for Korean Studies fall 2013 film series wraps up Tuesday, November 19, with the screening of The Journals of Musan (무산 일기), a 2011 release written and directed by Park Jung-bum, who also appears as the lead character in the cast. The film is based on the experiences of a North Korean refugee Park met while attending Yonsei university. It has been commended for bringing attention to the plight of defectors and the discrimination they often face in South Korea.
The plot of the film involves a North Korean defector named Jeon Seung-chul, who struggles with life in the South. Unable to find a job better than distributing fliers, he also struggles to bond with those around him, even at the church he attends. His life changes when his roommate, a broker sending money to the families of other defectors, asks for his help. The broker has been conned by his uncle, who had been helping to funnel defectors’ money into the North through China, and now he needs Seung-chul’s help to recover the lost funds.
The Journals of Musan won the Tiger Award at the 40th International Film Festival Rotterdam, the Jury Prize at the 13th Deauville Asian Film Festival, the New Currents award at the Pusan International Film Festival, the grand prize at Off Plus Camera Festival in Krakow, Poland, and the Golden Star at the Festival International du Film de Marrakech.
Film screenings take place in the Center for Korean Studies auditorium at 1881 East-West Road on the University of Hawai’i Mānoa campus and begin at 6:30 p.m. Korean films are shown with English subtitles. For further information, contact the Center for Korean Studies at (808) 956‑7041 or Professor Young-a Park (email@example.com) at (808) 956‑6387.
For this final screening of the series, join us for light refreshments and informal conversation before the film, beginning at 5:30 p.m.
A short trailer for the film is available here: