Fans of classic Korean cinema will be pleased to learn that the Korean Film Archive has made it possible to watch dozens of older Korean films on line at YouTube. The current YouTube archive includes seventy films organized as eleven overlapping playlists.
In addition to playlists for each decade from the 1940s through the 1990s, there are lists for three well-known directors plus a “Top 10” list and an “HD” list. The three directors included are Kim Ki-young, Shin Sang-ok, and Im Kwon-t’aek. Only a few selected items are available from the works of these directors, and they are not always their best or best-known films. For example, only four of the many films made by Im Kwon-t’aek are available, but the often-sought Sopyonje is among them.
If you missed the Center for Korean Studies comedy film series last spring, you can catch up now via YouTube. Most of the features shown in that series are available in the archive, including The Love Marriage (자유결혼, 1958), A Petty Middle Manager (삼등과장, 1961), Mr. Park (박서방, 1960), Hyperbolae of Youth (청춘쌍곡선, 1956), and A Romantic Papa (로맨스 빠빠, 1960).
The films retain their original Korean soundtracks, of course, but English subtitles are also present in the on-line versions: Look for the “cc” button on the toolbar at the bottom of the play window or the “Interactive Transcript” button below the window.
- Aimless Bullet 오발탄 (1961)
- The Seaside Village 갯마을 (1965)
- Eoh Wu-dong 어우동 (1985)
- Yeong-Ja’s Heyday 영자의 전성시대 (1975)
- Holiday in Seoul 서울의 휴일 (1956)
- Mother and a Guest 사랑방 손님과 어머니 (1961)
- Hwang Jin-i 황진이 (1986)
- The Tae Baek Mountains 태백산맥 (1994)
- Mulberry 뽕 (1985)
- Madame Freedom 자유부인 (1956)
- Yangsan Province 양산도 (1955)
- The Wedding Day 시집가는 날 (1956)
The link to the Korean Film Archive Korean Classic Film Theater on YouTube is: http://www.youtube.com/user/KoreanFilm.